Suffolk councils delivering project to improve private rented housing sector

‘Safe Suffolk Renters’ is an initiative to support private sector tenants, landlords and other stakeholders

Babergh and Mid Suffolk have joined with Suffolk’s other district and borough councils to deliver a ground-breaking project aimed at improving the experience and environment for landlords and tenants in the private rented sector.

Called ‘Safe Suffolk Renters’, this multi-faceted initiative is designed to create a better understanding of the pressures and problems in the sector, and to improve standards, particularly in the worst private rented homes in the area. To achieve this, the project team will consult widely with tenants, landlords and stakeholders in the county.

The project is already speaking with key stakeholders and is also staging a landmark conference for private sector landlords at the University of Suffolk in Ipswich. Engaging for a Better Future will bring together landlords, representatives of member associations and industry professionals in November. 

The conference will feature practical guidance and information on a range of subjects including mortgages, financing, tax advice, property maintenance and changes to legislation. 

Safe Suffolk Renters has been developed thanks to £2.2m of Government funding. The successful joint bid, made by the five Suffolk councils working as Suffolk Housing Board (SHB), will see the funding awarded over two years by the Department of Housing, Levelling Up and Communities (DHLUC), from a share of its £14m Private Rented Sector (PRS) Pathfinder Programme.

Cllr Richard Winch, Mid Suffolk cabinet member for housing and property, said:

“This is a great opportunity for us to support the private rented sector and improve standards for everyone. The priority is to ensure that all residents have access to quality housing.”

Cllr Jessie Carter, Babergh’s cabinet member for housing, said:

“This additional funding will help us empower landlords and tenants with better knowledge about rights and responsibilities, helping us engage and work closely with them. The overall aim is to improve the standard of the private rented sector housing across the districts.”

Similar conferences for tenants and stakeholders will follow. The outcomes of the overall Safe Suffolk Renters project will be developed into a sustainable model for collaborative working into the future and will also be fed back to help shape future government policy. The initiative has been funded by the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities.

Engaging for a Better Future is free for any landlord to attend, whether they manage a large portfolio or just one property. It takes place at the University of Suffolk’s Waterfront Building in Ipswich on 3 November, between 9am-2pm. Book your free place at Engaging for a Better Future: A Conference for Private Sector Landlords - Safe Suffolk Renters

Suffolk Safe Renters landlord conference