Nottingham Housing Disrepair Affects 1 in 5 Homes

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Nottingham Housing Disrepair
 Allaya Hussain
Legally reviewed by: Allaya Hussain In: Housing Disrepair

1 in 5 Nottingham Homes are “Non-Decent”.

Almost 1 in 5 Nottingham homes have been deemed not good enough ahead of the council’s plan to improve the city’s housing. The council recently states that 18 per cent of their homes are “non-decent” according to figures from the English Housing Survey. For a home to be deemed “non-decent” means adheres to one of the following:

  • The housing has a hazard.
  • The housing poses an immediate threat to a person’s health.
  • Not effectively insulated.
  • Not effectively heated.
  • The housing is not in a reasonable state of repair.
  • Lacking modern facilities.

These concerning statistics were revealed while councillors were examining the authorities draft Housing Strategy. The strategy aims to identify the city’s key housing challenges and outlining how the council will tackle them ahead of a public consultation on the document.

Pressing Issues Result in Nottingham Housing Disrepair

Nottingham council states that their key housing issues are a lack of affordable housing to rent and that which is rentable is ‘low quality’. Furthermore, Nottingham has a higher number of homeless people and rough sleepers. Finally, the council is facing issues of energy efficiency and carbon emissions of the city’s homes.

Aging Housing Stock Leading to Homes in Disrepair

An aging housing stock is partly to attribute to the high number or Nottingham homes in disrepair. More than a quarter of the city’s homes are over a hundred years old. In addition, more than half of the homes are more than fifty years old. The council explains that this has caused many of the homes to fail adequate standards of energy efficiency. As a result, 18.1 per cent of Nottingham households are experiencing fuel poverty in comparison with the 13.1 per cent average in England. Therefore, nearly a fifth of residents are unable to keep their properties warm for a reasonable price.

Decline in Home Ownership

Homeownership is on the decline in Nottingham, significantly below the country’s average and social housing stock is significantly reduced. The report details that 24,000 council homes have been sold through Right-to-Buy schemes since the 1980s. The authority is losing 270 discounted homes a year. The total value of these discounts amount to £14 million per year. While the council homes are being sold more than 10,000 people remain on the Housing Register waiting list. Additionally, only 1,500 available lettings are given each year.

High Levels of Homelessness

According to the committee demands for homelessness support in Nottingham are “extremely high and increasing”. The city council cites a rise in homelessness as a key factor in them becoming unable to meet the legal requirement to deliver a balanced budget this year.

The city council has expanded temporary accommodation for families from 88 in 2017 to 441 units by November 2023, and offers 430 units of supported accommodation for single homeless individuals. The housing challenges in Nottingham are attributed to demographic factors, high levels of deprivation, and a projected population increase of over 15,000 people in the next decade, with many residents on low incomes.

Families Living in Fear Due to Nottingham Housing Disrepair

Nottinghamshire Live highlights some of the horrendous living conditions around the city. In recent interviews, they give a voice to tenants struggling to get themselves heard.

Mum Agnieszka Sobkow has been living with a hole in her bedroom ceiling for almost three months. She said she was scared for her, and her daughter’s life.

“This is dangerous, we don’t feel safe in our own home. We’re worried the whole roof is going to collapse one day,” Agnieszka said.

“We’re just fighting for basic human rights because living like this is not normal. There are pieces of wood and plaster and metal falling through the hole all the time and there are also wires hanging out but the loft is wet so we’re worried about what might happen.”

High Numbers of Students

Additionally, Nottingham houses more than 60,000 students. Most of these students live in converted family properties, further contributing to the shortage of quality housing available in some areas.

The Council’s Strategy for the Nottingham Housing Disrepair

In the council’s draft strategy, the city states their vision that homes in Nottingham will provide people with a safe, warm, and affordable place to live. Furthermore, they add that every home will be of good quality and part of vibrant local neighbourhood where everyone has the chance to thrive. They state that they believe that regardless of tenure and housing type all citizens should be able to access housing that meets their needs now and into the future.

The council’s plan has three aims:

  1. “Meeting the city’s diverse housing needs and aspirations.
  2. “Driving excellence in housing standards and services across all tenures.”
  3. “Enabling new-build housing growth and regeneration for a green and prosperous Nottingham”.

What to Do When Facing Housing Disrepair as a Tenant: A Legal Guide

If your home falls below acceptable standards due to neglect from your social landlord, taking legal action may become necessary. Promptly reporting any issues to your landlord is crucial, providing them with an opportunity to address and rectify the problems swiftly. However, if your landlord fails to respond, ignores the reported issues, or performs repairs inadequately, pursuing legal action against them becomes the appropriate course of action.

Taking the necessary steps to address housing disrepair is essential. Residing in unsafe conditions can pose risks to you and your family’s well-being.

It’s imperative to act decisively to safeguard your rights and ensure that your living environment meets the required standards.

Seek Legal Support with AWH’s Housing Disrepair Solicitors

If you or someone you know is grappling with the distressing reality of substandard housing conditions, you don’t face this battle alone. AWH’s dedicated housing disrepair solicitors are experts at advocating for your rights. Our solicitors ensure that living conditions meet the standards tenants deserve.

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