Private sector housing - Privacy notice

Croydon’s Private Sector Housing Team [PSHT] is committed to providing a good service and at the same time protecting and respecting your privacy.

The PSHT are responsible for providing a range of services designed to improve the standard of the large private rented sector in the Borough. This includes houses in multiple occupation (HMOs), responding to service requests about property repair including fire safety, energy efficiency and electrical safety and services around property inspections including to support non-UK visa applications (immigration property inspection report) and HMO advice visits.

This Privacy Notice details the retention of information in respect of the previous Croydon Private Rented Property Licensing Scheme 2015 [CPRPL 2015]. Following the decision in June 2021 by the Ministry for Housing Communities and Local Government to refuse the Council’s application for a further scheme, it was considered appropriate to retain some of the data provided under the scheme to support the statutory role of the PSHT to provide tenants and landlords with advice to ensure that their rights are protected and provision of safe and suitable private sector accommodation to continue to promote standards, safety and compliance in the private rented sector.

The information collected under the previous CPRPL consisted in summary of:

  • contact details of; applicants, license holders and interested parties.
  • property ownership and/or tenancy details;
  • relevant business, company details;
  • details of those residing at properties;
  • information relating to property standards and safety issues, gas safety certificate, tenancy agreement, electrical safety certificates;
  • application forms, declarations, individual witness statements and tenancy deposit protection information;
  • information relating to enforcement action; and
  • the property licensing status.

This Privacy Notice explains how the Council will use some retained information in relation to the work of the PSHT and how we protect your privacy in compliance with our legal obligations under the Data Protection Act 2018 and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) 2018. This Privacy Notice applies to any activity involving our use of your personal data, for example, collecting, storing, sharing, and secure disposal.  

The Data that has been Retained

The Data Sets have been retained, following a data minimisation process, to only retain information that is directly required to support the statutory role of PSHT.

These Data Sets will be subject to further Annual Review commencing in December 2023.

List 1

List 1 consists of data obtained as part of the application process and property inspections:

  • Historic Licensed premises address;
  • Historic Licensed premises applicant and contact details;
  • Date of historic application, licence granted and status of licence at the end of scheme;.
  • Date of historic inspection (if carried out) and outcome. Some inspection records retained (.
  • Details about the property at point of application (connected to gas, fire precautions, age, three of more storeys and property type); and/or
  • Details about the property occupation at point of application; three or more occupants, for HMO permitted numbers, number of kitchens and number of living rooms.

List 2

List 2 consists of contact information, from the application.

  • Name of historic licence holder; and
  • Contact details of historic licence holder.

During the scheme and to date the Council have used this contact information as a means for communicating with landlord and property agents with newsletters, information about licensing and updates in relation to the private rented sector. The information will be retained in a live format with the opportunity for the landlord or agent to amend their details or request to be removed from the database.

As a result over time List 2, will evolve to be a live data set as follows:

  • Name of a historic licence holder, current landlords, letting agents or property management companies; and
  • Contact details for a historic licence holder, current landlords, letting agents or property management companies;

This will enable the PSHT to engage with landlords, letting agents and/or property management companies to promote best practice in the Borough’s private sector housing.  

List 3

Prosecution Information, consisting of data in relation to those cases where enforcement action was taken by the Council during the CPRPL 2015, by the Council.

This relates to information in respect of a landlord, letting agent or property management agent who received a simple caution and/or financial penalty. On occasions the offender would be placed on the Mayor for London Landlord and Local Authority property checker data base. (The historic landlord and/or license holder would have been informed of this at the time).

Retaining the data and using it in a controlled way has allowed the PSHT to continue to promote standards, safety and compliance in the private rented sector.

The lawful basis on which we use this information

The Council considers that the Lawful basis for processing was at the time it was originally collected and continues to be Article 6 (e) Public task: the processing is necessary for the Council to perform the following tasks in the public interest to supports its official functions listed below:

  • Section 3 of the Housing Act 2004 requires that a local housing authority must keep the housing conditions in their area under review with a view to identifying any action that may need to be taken by them. The data can support a high level review.
  • Enforcement action contained in Chapter 2 (improvement notices, prohibition orders and hazard awareness notices); the new emergency measures contained in Chapter 3 (emergency remedial action and emergency prohibition orders), and the existing kinds of enforcement action dealt with in Chapter 4 (demolition orders and slum clearance declarations).
  • The requirements under part 1 of the Housing Act 2004 and for landlords under the Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm (England) Regulations 2015 it is a duty to provide smoke alarms on every storey. The same regulations, under regulation 5, place a duty on a local authority, where they consider there is a premises with a breach to serve a remedial notice on a landlord.
  • Licencing as a mandatory Home of Multiple Occupation under Part 2 of the 2004 Act.
  • To support the exercising rights under section 96(5) of the 2004 Act a local housing authority or tenant may want to apply to a property tribunal for a rent repayment order.  

How your Data will be used

The data will be used for two purposes:

  • to enable PSHT to engage with landlords, letting agents and/or property management companies to promote best practice in the Borough’s private sector housing; and
  • to PSHT to perform the following tasks in the public interest to supports its official functions as detailed above.

Who we share information with

We may share information about you to third parties where permitted or required by law to do so for all lawful purposes as specified in this Notice:

  • other Croydon Council services so they can carry out their statutory roles and support our service (e.g. community protection, anti-social behaviour team, wider Public Protection and Licensing, corporate internal fraud investigation team, social services, complaints, business intelligence, corporate finance, legal services, IT services, quality assurance, debt recovery and council tax);
  • government departments e.g. Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local and Government, Department for Work and Pensions, HM Revenue and Customs, Home Office and Mayoral private sector housing team and other local housing authorities or social housing providers;
  • tenants who are taking formal action as enabled by various legislation such as making a rent repayment order, in defence of eviction through service of an unlawful section 21 notice, applying for injunctions or taking steps under the Fitness for Human Habitation Act 2018 for repairs or compensation; and
  • HMRC, Police and fraud prevention agencies, HM Courts and Tribunals System Health and Safety Executive and/ or law enforcement agencies in relation to the prevention or detection of crime or fraud.

We will only share your information with other orgainsations and/or individuals in accordance with the requirements of GDPR and/or the Data Protection Act 2018, and where there is a legal basis allowing this to take place.  

Storing this information

The data is stored securely in Council databases. This includes within the council server or databases of companies under license to provide a service which includes the storage, interrogation and access facilities.

PSHT will usually keep records for up to 7 years after provision in case of queries, information requests, repeat enquiries and they will then be destroyed securely.

Cases relating to enforcement action will be retained for 7 years from final decision (with no appeal made). .

We securely destroy all information once we have decided that it is not lawfully retained and no longer need it.

If you would like to know more about how we store your data, please contact hsg- privatesector@croydon.gov.uk.

Requesting access to your personal data

Under GDPR and the Data Protection Act 2018, you have the right to request access to information that we hold about you. To make a request for your personal information, contact the Council’s Information Management Team at SAR@croydon.gov.uk.

Further information

The GDPR and the Data Protection Act 2018 gives you a number of rights to control what personal information is used by us and how it is used by us. Information about your data rights is listed in the Council’s corporate Privacy Notice.

If you have any questions or concerns about the way we collect, store or use your personal information, please contact in the first instance hsg- privatesector@croydon.gov.uk

For advice about data protection issues, you can contact the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) 

We reserve the right to amend this Privacy Notice at any time and will keep it under review. If we do make any changes, we will post the current version to our website at this address.

For more general information about how the Council uses your information and your data rights, please refer to the Corporate Privacy Notice.