I am really pleased to be able to do a review of this well known and respected legal text book on disrepair and tenants rights. It has been a long time coming as the last edition was 1999! As the introduction acknowledges, the world of housing disrepair was a very different place then.
In fact the introduction gives us a useful short history of the period from 1999 to date, touching briefly on the Law Commissions and subsequent reports (which have resulted in a resounding lack of action by the government, presumably because the answers provided in the reports are not those they want to hear), the 2004 Housing Act, the Decent Homes program, the tolerated trespassers problems, claims farmers, and the problems of obtaining professional legal help under legal aid.
The book covers very much the ground you would expect.
- Chapter 1 looks at contractual rights and the provisions of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985.
- Chapter 2 looks at common law rights (ie negligence and nuisance) and statutory rights (Occupiers Liability Act 1957, Defective Premises Act 1972 and the Human Rights Act 1988)
- Chapter 3 looks at civil remedies, covering direct action and court action
- Chapter 4 looks at the vexed question of funding, covering legal aid, insurance, and conditonal fee agreements
- Chapter 5 covers proceedings under the Environmental Protection Act 1990
- Chapter 6 covers the various provisions of the Housing Act 2004
- Chapter 7 is a useful chapter covering various miscellaneous matters such as asbestos, condensation and dampness, gas safety,, HMOs and overcrowding, and
- Chapter 8 looks at damages
- There then follows some useful appendices including extracts from the legislation, some guidance on understanding experts reports, and some precedent documents
The book is clear and authoritative, and everyone working in the field of housing law should have it on their desk.
Published by LAG, the book authors are Jan Luba QC and Beatrice Prevatt, both barristers at Garden Court Chambers in Lincolns Inn Fields, and Deidre Forster of Powell Forster Solicitors. You can buy Repairs: Tenants’ Rights online from Amazon (affiliate link).