HC Deb 06 November 1962 vol 666 cc784-5
14. Mr. Frank Allaun

asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government and Minister for Welsh Affairs if he is aware that landlords are not at present legally obliged to carry out and pay for necessary repairs to the hot water system in their houses; and if he will introduce legislation to make this compulsory.

Sir K. Joseph

Under the Housing Act, 1961, the landlord is responsible for such repairs if the lease was granted after 24th October, 1961, for a term of less than seven years. Controlled tenants can use the certificate of disrepair procedure under the Rent Acts.

Mr. Allaun

But surely it is a ridiculous anomaly that when a public health inspector can insist on the landlord of a normal house repairing leaking roofs, he cannot insist on the landlord repairing burst pipes? Is the Minister aware that I can give him details of a case where a tenant in poor circumstances has had to go without hot water for weeks because the landlord will not do the repairs?

Sir K. Joseph

The 1961 Act put on landlords in tenancies occurring after the date mentioned the obligation where the lease is shorter than seven years. If the hon. Gentleman will send me details, I shall see if anything can be done within the existing law.

Sir W. Wakefield

Can my right hon. Friend say what steps have been taken to reduce the need for repairs and also to stop wasting running water by having a different design of tap from that now in existence? He will be aware that on the Continent there are other kinds of taps that make the need for repairs Jess, and they certainly stop a great deal of water wastage.

Sir K. Joseph

That is another and most constructive suggestion and I hope that my hon. Friend will put down a Question.