Selective Licensing in Leeds at £825 per property!

by Readers Question

15:52 PM, 7th August 2018
About 3 months ago

Selective Licensing in Leeds at £825 per property!

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Selective Licensing in Leeds at £825 per property!

I have just heard about proposals for selective licensing in parts of Beeston and Harehills in Leeds.

I am quite shocked as 12 of my 15 properties fall within the proposed area in Beeston. At £825 per property this would cost me £9,900.

There is a consultation Click Here

Have any other Leeds landlords heard about this?

Have landlords in other areas found that these schemes always go ahead after the consultation period?

Richard

“Consultation

We are currently holding a consultation to gather feedback about making certain areas in Beeston and Harehills Selective Licensing areas. We have not yet made any decision about this. To shape our decision, you can take part in our consultation which is open until 31 October.

Locations being considered for Selective Licensing

We are considering parts of Beeston and Harehills as potential areas for Selective Licensing.

What happens next?

Once the consultation is finished, we will gather the feedback and look at the available evidence before making a decision on whether to go ahead or not. No decision will be taken before then. If approved, it is likely that any Selective Licensing scheme would start in Autumn 2019.
Selective Licence fees

The proposed licence would cost £825 per property. If you are a member of the Leeds Rental Standard then you would receive a discount of £150 on your application.
Warning
Landlords who let a property without having a licence would be committing an offence, and could face an unlimited fine or a civil penalty of up to £30,000.”



Comments

Susan Bradley

17:34 PM, 7th August 2018
About 3 months ago

I don’t have any properties in those areas of Leeds but Last time I was at a meeting arranged by Leeds council they said they didn’t want to go down that route and that if you joined the Leeds rental standard (for free) they would class you as a good landlord and leave you to get on with things. It’s disturbing that they are now thinking about bringing it in but they might be more open to objections if they are indeed reluctant?

Richard Harrison

17:59 PM, 7th August 2018
About 3 months ago

I found this in the Frequently asked questions:-
"As a result of the inequalities in these areas, the Council is considering focusing its actions and resources to try and make a difference. For a number of years, the Council has operated an accreditation scheme for landlords in Leeds. Whilst very successful in some areas, it has not been successful across the city. More recently, the Council has supported the Leeds Rental Standard in the city. This is a self-regulation scheme run by the sector, for the sector as a means to recognise good landlords in the market. Like previous accreditation schemes, however, it has not consistently been taken up by landlords in Beeston and Harehills".
As I don't use letting agents I didn't know much about the scheme. The council certainly never warned that if we didn't join a scheme they would introduce selective licensing. I have already decided to sell one property which is due to come to the end of its fixed term shortly. Unfortunately most of my properties have fixed term deals that have a few years to run, so I would have to pay high early repayment charges. The first properties I bought in 2007 are on base rate trackers, but the prices on those are either below or just getting back to the prices I paid in 2007 (despite spending a lot of money on them). I think landlords will be put off and prices may drop if the scheme is introduced.

Mark Alexander

7:30 AM, 8th August 2018
About 3 months ago

Selective Licensing consultations have resulted in the ideas being knocked on the head a few times. However, this has only happened when the Councils have received an overwhelming negative response.

In the vast majority of cases, the schemes have been introduced because only a handful of landlords have fought back.

Apathy costs money!

My advice is that you spend as much time getting more landlords to help you to fight the Council as you spend actually fighting the Council.

You cannot win this battle on your own, you need to recruit and Army.

Take inspiration from what landlords in Bournemouth recently achieved - see link below.

https://www.property118.com/another-council-abandons-selective-licencing-proposals/

Also see the article about a recent win in regards to Selective Licencing at the Court of Appeal

https://www.property118.com/selective-licensing-scheme-additional-powers-ruled-illegal-court-appeal/

Other wins for landlords in regards to stopping Selective Licencing in its tracks have occurred in:-

Telford & Wrekin >>> https://www.property118.com/consultation-feedback-halts-selective-licensing/

and Milton Keynes >>> https://www.property118.com/milton-keynes-abandon-selective-licensing/

I wish you good luck and request that you also help promote my petition to Theresa May - link below.

https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/competition-will-increase-the-quality-of-housing-of-all-tenures

Richard Harrison

8:03 AM, 8th August 2018
About 3 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Mark Alexander at 08/08/2018 - 07:30
Thanks Mark, I will have a look at those. I have already told a few people about the proposed scheme and consultation. Also, I have already signed your petition, shared it on Facebook and told a few people about it (two told me they had signed).

john henderson

8:50 AM, 8th August 2018
About 3 months ago

Yes Richard I spoke to them on Monday as I nearly choked eating my breakfast.

The actual cost is for the 5 year term and about £675 if you join the leeds rental standard . I was a member but they changed the scheme last year so I didn’t rejoin.

I will have 3 properties affected.

I called them and filled in the questionnaire. Get this filled in with your objections as it seems this info will be looked at.

I spoke to the housing team and explained it was a bad idea but asked if they had ever thought about using carrots as well as sticks. So reward good landlords with warm good houses against the ones who do nothing. This scheme could easily do this.

I also have the email of every landlord and agent on the private rent scheme so maybe I need to do a block email.

I am up for working as a unit, maybe we can get in touch privately.

John

Mark Alexander

8:54 AM, 8th August 2018
About 3 months ago

Reply to the comment left by john henderson at 08/08/2018 - 08:50
Please don't share your emails here John, I already have them both.

I will email Richard and give him your email address. He can then contact you directly if he wishes to do so.

I will do the same for any other Property118 member if they leave a comment to give me their permission to share their email addresses with you both.

john henderson

9:02 AM, 8th August 2018
About 3 months ago

Thanks Mark, that’s ok.

Richard Harrison

9:04 AM, 8th August 2018
About 3 months ago

Hi John, I saw a post about the scheme on Facebook on Monday and haven't got over the shock yet. I have already filled in the questionnaire and obviously made it clear I am not in favour.

Mark Alexander

9:18 AM, 8th August 2018
About 3 months ago

May I suggest you share this article on as many Landlord related Facebook Groups as possible.

Simply copy the page URL and paste into Facebook

Alistair Cooper

9:48 AM, 8th August 2018
About 3 months ago

Apologies if I am moving off the Leeds specific topic, but on the subject of fees (even for the new mandatory licensing) they are becoming ridiculous. St Albans have only just woken up to the 1st October deadline and released their bargain fees (which they claim only cover costs and are not a profit centre) at £153 per occupant! That equates to £1683 for a single property having seven bedrooms, 4 of which are over 10m2 so capable of accommodating a couple).
When I raised the question of how it costs treble to process a license for one property compared to another I of course got no response!
No accreditation scheme, no discounts whatsoever for 'good' landlords, and a vitriolic note that all fees must be received in clear funds by 30th September and no instalments whatsoever!
Clearly drafted by someone with a clear understanding of the cashflow problems of the average HMO landlord.... of course we all have a spare £17k in cash floating around doing nothing constructive
Also, in higher rent areas such as Hertfordshire dictating to grown adults that they cannot possibly reside in a room of 6.49m2 despite generous communal space will only have one consequence... the disappearance from the market of any accommodation option below £600pcm .... I'm sure that will help all my tenants only bringing home circa £1000 dramatically improve their living standards!

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