16:03 PM, 20th January 2011, About 12 years ago 1
Landlords have launched an online campaign against a council’s proposals to micromanage shared houses by introducing planning controls and extra licensing.
The National Landlords Association is running a Facebook and Twitter campaign in protest at Portsmouth City Council’s intention to introduce article 4 selective licensing for house in multiple occupation (HMOs) in the city.
Save Housing in Portsmouth aims to encourage hundreds of HMO landlords and tenants in Portsmouth to write to councillor and local MP Mike Hancock, who chairs the committee due to vote on introducing selective licensing in a few weeks.
The NLA is speaking out because they believe restricting shared homes will reduce housing options in the city, while the council considers shared housing has negative effects on neighbourhoods that suffer problems from increased traffic and parking, rubbish and antisocial behaviour.
NLA chairman David Salusbury said: “Unfortunately Portsmouth, like other cities across the country, has a lack of good quality affordable housing. The proposed designation will ensure it has even less.
Shared house restrictions will reduce city’s housing options
“Aside from the obvious impact this will have on local landlords, these plans will be devastating for the many people who have little option other than to rely on shared housing. Be they young professionals unable to get on the property ladder, students unable to secure accommodation on the University of Portsmouth campus or vulnerable and low income people on Portsmouth City Council’s housing waiting list, all will struggle to find a home.”
Save Housing In Portsmouth supporters can download a campaign letter to send to Councillor Hancock from www.landlords.org.uk.
Facebook followers can join the ‘Save Housing In Portsmouth’ campaign page and Twitter users can tweet the campaign hash tag #savehousinginportsmouth .
Portsmouth is one of several cities that have recently announced plans to take on extra powers to govern shared housing – others include Oxford, Milton Keynes, Manchester, Leeds, York and Newcastle.
Portsmouth NLA landlord Ken Staunton said: “I fear if the proposal succeeds, it will make it impossible for local landlords to provide more homes for sharers, students and people on low incomes.”
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