Haringey Private Tenants Meeting – Thursday 15th August, 7pm

Haringey Private Tenants Meeting Thursday 15th August
7pm, In the Cafe, North London Community House
Moorefield Road, nr Bruce Grove Station. (venue to be confirmed)
Please join us to discuss taking action around housing issues for private tenants in Haringey – All welcome!

If you are concerned about the situation for tenants renting in Haringey, have renting problems yourself and would like to take action to try and solve these problems please join us for this open meeting next Thursday. The meeting follows on from the successful Affordable Housing For All Event at Wood Green Library which we organised back in March and the Letting Agents Day of Action we organised in Haringey alongside other London private tenants groups in April.

Due to the rise in new private tenants groups across London, and the existence of the London Coalition of Private Tenants Groups – London Renters (which some of our members attend), private tenants issues are becoming higher on the national agenda. Now’s the time to really join in with these voices and discuss what we can do locally and alongside groups in neighbouring boroughs. Perhaps now is also the time to meet more regularly again so we can take actions forward.

In April, Haringey Private Tenants organised the successful Community Housing Inspectors protest against Letting Agents who continue to discriminate against any private tenant on low income or Housing benefit, demand extortionate ‘fees’ for ‘administration’, inventories and renewal of contracts – In Scotland these fees are illegal -  and also to demand that rents are brought down to affordable levels. You can learn more about this protest here: http://haringeyhousingaction.org.uk/community-housing-inspectors-expose-anti-social-practices-by-haringey-letting-agents-and-serve-cease-desist-orders/ or watch the video.

A few things we might want to discuss
- Rights for renters in Haringey.  How can we ensure private tenants know the rights that do exist, demand them, plus how to improve these rights and generally empower private tenants.
- Rents are too high. How can we campaign to bring rents down?
- Tenancy lengths. Should we be campaigning for longer tenancies?
- What do people think about the registration of landlords? Is it a good thing?
- Proposals from the DCLG make recommendations for accelerated eviction processes for non-payment of rent or other contractual failures by tenants which would further erode the rights of tenants and provide landlords with even more power to get rid of tenants they decide they don’t want anymore – and much quicker – it’s important we take action to show the voice of private tenants and what our needs and demands are, to be able to find secure, affordable, well maintained homes just like anyone else.
- Private tenants on low incomes who require housing benefit in order to afford their rent are being discriminated against by landlords and letting agents across Haringey and are increasingly unable to find affordable, appropriate and secure housing. What action can we take to support people in this situation? Should we be naming and shaming landlords and letting agents in Haringey?
- Or other issues you think are more important?

If you would like to be kept informed of Haringey Private Tenants meetings and activities, please email michelle@riseup.net

PRIVATE RENTING?
Secure Tenancies for all
   Until 1988 most tenancies were secure / long term and rents were capped by law at affordable levels. We can all be demanding this now.
Bring rents down   A tenant who cannot afford the rent can try to negotiate a reduction.   Contact the Council’s Housing Advice Team – they have negotiated lower rents with many landlords.
No to discrimination   Outrageous signs like ‘No DSS’ (people on benefits) must be challenged. Such discrimination must be banned, just like racism and sexism. And Letting Agents fees should be scrapped.
Resist evictions   If a landlord wants to evict they must first issue a valid Notice To Quit – eg. It’s not valid if they’ve not put your deposit in an official protected scheme. Then they have to go to court. Get advice. If they evict illegally, or harass a tenant, it is a criminal offence. Some tenants are arguing in court that an eviction would infringe their legally-protected human rights to family life.

August 6, 2013  Tags: ,   Posted in: LOCAL CAMPAIGNS, NEWS