Landlords could have to provide details for a Northern Ireland register for the first time under new government plans.
The proposals will include a rent deposit scheme to protect agreements between tenants and landlords. There will also be an education program to ensure that landlords and tenants are aware of their respective rights and responsibilities. The plans are part of a new private rented strategy, entitled 'Building Sound Foundations'
"The introduction of a landlord register will help to ensure that all private landlords are held accountable, that they are made aware of their responsibilities, and also of their rights", states Margaret Ritchie.
"The strategy will also ensure a higher standard of home in the private rented sector, and that those more vulnerable people living in private rented homes are better supported to help them sustain tenancies".
Grainne Long from the Chartered Institute of Housing welcomed the new strategy and said it supported the department's plans for a tenancy deposit scheme "which will provide protection for both the landlord and tenant should a dispute arise"