Housing Advice - Existing Private Tenancy

The Housing Advice service may be able to provide help and advice to existing private tenants who may be a victim of harassment, illegal eviction or experiencing trouble or issues with their landlord. In these cases, there are specific legal powers that we may be able to use.

The Council's powers under the Protection from Eviction Act 1977

Harassment and illegal eviction as defined in the Protection from Eviction Act 1977, are criminal offences.

We have powers to prosecute persons who commit offences. Our Housing Officers investigate complaints and mediate between the parties wherever possible. We will consider bringing a prosecution where the evidence is sufficient to indicate the likelihood of a successful prosecution and where it is in the public interest.

The Council's powers under the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985, as amended

The Council has powers to prosecute landlords who fail to fulfil their obligations under the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985, as amended.

Such matters include the failure of landlords to provide rent books and the failure of freeholders to give long leasehold tenants information concerning service charges and insurance.

Where a complaint is received the Council's Housing Officers will endeavour to secure that the required information is provided. However in the case of persistent failure to provide the information a prosecution will be considered.

The Council's powers under S.33 of the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976

The Council has a power under S.33 Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976, to make arrangements to secure the restoration or continuance of gas, water or electricity supplies for the benefit of residents (usually tenants) where the supplies have been, or are likely to be, cut off because of failure by the owner of the property to pay for the services.

The Council will consider making such arrangements only as a last resort for emergency cases and then only when young children or elderly persons are affected. When invoking its powers the Council will only make arrangements with the suppliers which do not involve financial liability falling upon the Council. In every case the Council will co-operate closely with the suppliers and wherever possible enlist the suppliers' support and assistance.

Further information

For further information on the above or any other issues you may have with your private tenancy, please contact us as we may be able to offer some advice and assistance.


Related pages

Housing information and advice

Homelessness and Housing Advice Service Charter

Homelessness and Housing Advice - Equal Opportunities

Contact details

Housing Advice Service
Stevenage Borough Council
Daneshill House

01438 242242

The Housing Advice Service is open on weekdays between:
8.45am and 5.15pm (4.45pm on Fridays)