Module Identifier LA34910  
Module Title HOUSING LAW  
Academic Year 2003/2004  
Co-ordinator Professor Christopher P Rodgers  
Semester Intended for use in future years  
Next year offered N/A  
Next semester offered N/A  
Other staff Ms Anne E Barlow  
Pre-Requisite LA10110 or LA30110 or LA15710 and LA15830 or LA35830  
Co-Requisite LA36130 LA36130  
Course delivery Seminars / Tutorials   4 Hours Seminar.  
  Lecture   20 Hours  
Assessment TypeAssessment Length/DetailsProportion
Semester Exam1 Hours  50%
Semester Assessment1 Hours Essay: Essay of 2000 words (Required in week 7)  50%
Supplementary Assessment By combination of Examination and Coursework.   

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:
To analyse the interaction of social policy objectives with the law in practice, and convey to students an understanding of the problems of implementing social policy objectives through use of the law and legal means.

Brief description

"An Englishman's Home is his Castle". An adage which is hardly true, yet the law does confer considerable protection on residential occupiers, and especially on vulnerable groups such as tenants and the homeless.. The law of housing fulfils a social welfare role - most of the legislation is concerned with ensuring that vulnerable groups in society have the right to a home and decent living conditions. The course considers the law governing the provision of "social" housing for rent, by local authorities or housing associations, and the privatisation of council housing in the 1980's. It also takes in the homelessness legislation, and considers what duties local authorities have to house homeless families. The course then considers the legal protection given to both private sector and public sector tenants, in terms of security of tenure and legal control of rents. The final element in the legal protection of occupiers is the law against Unlawful Harassment and Eviction, which provides basic safeguards against mistreatment and harassment by unscrupulous landlords.


To examine the social policy objectives of Housing Legislation and (i) the law governing the allocation and provision of social housing, (ii) the legal protection of residential tenants in both public and private sector rented accommodation.


The course will be taught by lectures and seminars. The lectures will provide the foundation elements upon which the student can build his or her own knowledge of the subject through additional reading. The seminars will explore, in a more detailed way through the forum of discussion issues (usually topical) chosen from the foundation material. Students will be expected to have done independent reading for seminars and to take part in argument and discussion in the seminars. Seminars are normally taken by the member of staff lecturing in the appropriate area of the course and aim to promote structured, persuasive and logical argument supported by appropriate material or examples.

1. Housing - An Historical and Theoretical Overview

2. Public Sector Housing Provision

2.1 The role of the state in housing provision.

2.2 The Role of Housing Benefit as a housing subsidy

2.3 The public sector under the Housing Act 1985

2.4 Who should house the homeless?

3. Homelessness

3.1 The Duties of Local Authorities under Part VII Housing Act 1996 - to whom are they owed and how adequate are these?

3.2 A consideration of the impact of these reforms

4. (a) Private Sector Rented Housing

4.1 The Rent Acts

4.2 The re-introduction of free market principles by the Housing Act 1988

4.3 Protection from eviction and harassment.

4.4 Tenants Rights : Security of Tenure and Rent Control.

4. (b) Public Sector Rented Housing

The "Tenants Charter" security of tenure and Housing Act 1985, Part IV

Reading Lists

No single book covers the whole course. The following is a sample of recommended reading
** Recommended Consultation
Partington and Hill (1991) Housing Law: Cases, Materials and Commentary
Arden and Hunter (1997) Homelessless and Allocations 5th.
Hughes and Lowe (1998) Social Housing Law and Policy
Madge (1998) Housing Law Casebook 2nd.
Bright and Gilbert (1996) Landlord and Tenant Law
Arden Manual of Housing Law 6th.
Rodgers (1995) Private Sector Housing Law


This module is at CQFW Level 6