The Human Rights Act and housing
The Human Rights Act (HRA) covers several basic human rights that every person in the UK is entitled to. Those that relate closest to housing are the right to:
- Respect for private life, family life and home.
- Prohibition of discrimination.
If your local council or housing association makes a decision that you think breaches these rights, we will work closely with you to hold the organisation responsible accountable.
Terms of tenancy
The HRA doesn’t set a level of housing or level of rent that’s acceptable. However, the terms of your tenancy should refer to the property as your ‘home’ meaning you are entitled to enjoy the respect and privacy in your home in line with the HRA. As such, you may have a claim if you feel your housing association or landlord has infringed on your right to privacy or harassed you.
Aids and adaptations
In line with being able to enjoy respect for your home and private life, you should be allowed to make adjustments or include any aids that make living in your home more manageable if you have a disability or mobility issue.
While landlords, councils and associations must act in line with regular, statutory and contractual agreements, there is no specific human right to a home of a certain quality. But courts recognise some situations are, or can become, so bad they affect the tenants’ health and wellbeing. As a result, these situations might breach your human rights, such as the right to freedom from inhumane or degrading treatment.
When making decisions on housing, councils and local housing authorities must ensure that:
- Their decisions do not negatively or unjustly impact the enjoyment of your home.
- They take reasonable steps to protect occupiers from adverse environmental difficulties.
If you find your property doesn’t meet these criteria and your council or housing supplier hasn’t responded to your issues, contact our team.