In the last year it has become very clear that many Local Authorities are looking very carefully at Private Sector Landlords and the various aspects of licensing.
Some Councils have considered Selective Licensing, a discretionary scheme that allows local authorities to introduce licensing for all privately rented properties, with a charge, in a given area. Others have examined Additional Licensing, which is basically extending Houses of Multiple Occupancy (HMO) licensing to smaller properties. Continue reading HMO licence fees up 650 percent
I am writing this after reading an article with the opening line “A Labour MP says that every MP he knows “is desperate for help in dealing with rogue landlords”.”
Here is a radical idea – penalise local authorities who do not use their legal powers to enforce the law!
This is what happens to good landlords: Continue reading Here’s a radical idea – Stop Shooting Fish in a Barrel
Article 4 Directions for managing HMOs will only work if they are accompanied by good planning policies – a Southampton perspective
By Guest Columnist Cllr Jeremy Moulton, Conservative Councillor for Freemantle Ward
On 23rd March Southampton City Council will join a number of other councils who have implemented new planning rules, called an Article 4 Direction, which governs houses in multiple occupational (HMOs). This will mean that landlords looking to convert an existing family home to an HMO will require planning permission. Currently only HMOs with more than 6 tenants need planning permission but the new rules will also apply to ones with 3 to 6 unrelated people. Continue reading Article 4 Directions – a Southampton Perspective
A council housing inspector was locked in shared flats by a defective lock while inspecting fire safety precautions at the property.
Magistrates heard the incident happened after Wyre Council had received complaints about the flats in Windsor Terrace, Fleetwood, Lancashire. Continue reading Council Inspector Trapped by Defective HMO Locks
Planners are cracking down on landlords who have added extensions to 24 homes in just three streets without permission.
Manchester City Council says 14 of the illegal extensions were built on properties owned by two landlords. Continue reading Eyesore Extensions Must Go, Planners Tell Landlords
A landlord who defied planning laws to convert three houses in to houses of multiple occupation (HMOs) has been stripped of £112,500 in rents by a judge.
Piara Singh Sehajpal ignored planning rules and turned three houses in 16 letting rooms and rented them out at £800 a month each. Continue reading Judge Strips HMO Landlord of £112,500 Illegal Rents
A rogue landlord was fined £8,000 for failing to maintain standards at a shared house that was taken over by a council.
Ken Herring, 66, admitted four offences of not complying with house in multiple occupation rules before Oxford Magistrates. Continue reading HMO Landlords Fined for Flouting Fire Safety Rules
Landlord Pavlos Chatzinopoulos was fined £2,515 for making tenants share with cramped rooms with tenants they did not know.
Swindon Council swooped on the property after a female renter tipped them off about the state of the house in multiple occupation when a man moved in to her room with her. Continue reading Landlord Forced Tenants to Share Cramped Rooms
As winter kicks in, Let Insurance Services are impressing on landlords to have their fire safety measures in place. They say shared housing is “seven times more likely to have a fire in the home.”
The company also believe more regulation needs to be implemented to ensure all rented properties are safe; up until now the only fire measures legally required are fire resistant furniture. Continue reading Are your tenants fire safe?
A London council has won a criminal compensation order against a letting company who failed to licence a house in multiple occupation.
In what is believed to be a landmark case, Newham Council claimed rent paid to the company, Sumal & Sons Properties, of Stamford Hill, was a criminal benefit as the property did not have an HMO licence.
A judge at Inner London Crown Court agreed with the argument and awarded £12,000 fines, costs and compensation for rent paid while the property was let without a licence. Continue reading Letting Unlicensed HMO is a Crime, According to Judge