Newham council in east London became the first local authority in England today to introduce a landlord register.
Private landlords in the borough will have to declare criminal convictions and follow safety rules - or face up to £20,000 in fines.
Councillors said it was a blow to rogue landlords making huge profits by creating overcrowded slums and charging extortionate rates.
Newham has carried out raids since 2010 in a bid to force out the area's slumlords.
Private landlords in Scotland already have to register and the Welsh government is set to introduce a similar law.
But the Con-Dems have ruled out a similar nationwide scheme in England.
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