Telford & Wrekin Council’s Cabinet is set to agree to abandon its selective licensing proposals in light of alternative measures at its meeting this week (15th February).
The Council had originally consulted on these proposals last year, seeking views on the introduction of licensing schemes in four areas: Hadley & Leegomery, Malinslee & Hollinswood, Brookside & Sutton Hill, and Woodside.
The National Landlords Association (NLA) had lodged objections to these proposals on the basis that they are likely to increase costs for landlords and tenants alike in the affected areas, whilst not actually solving the problems identified by the Council.
If these proposals had come into effect than landlords with privately rented properties within the designated areas would have had to apply for and obtain a 5 year licence in order to continue letting out their property.
A report on the consultation responses received by the Council set out the views of respondents and included recommendations for next steps. It concluded that there was insufficient support from residents and landlords to introduce the schemes, with over two-thirds (66.8%) of the 907 consultation respondents agreeing that they would not address the issues of low housing demand and anti-social behaviour.
Going forward, the report recommends that alternative actions are taken to tackle the problems identified, including:
- Implementing enhanced license conditions for Houses of Multiple Occupation (HMO’s) along with a new license fee and a DBS check requirement for applicants.
- Major Pride in Our Community investment being provided over the next two years to tackle hot spots across our borough where environmental standards need improvement and the Environmental enforcement team will be out on site to tackle the minority of residents who blight the community by committing environmental crime such as fly tipping, littering and committing Anti-social behaviour.
- Deployment of powers and tools contained within the new Housing Enforcement Policy which will be used to tackle rogue landlords.
- Bidding to secure external funding to increase the number of Environmental Health Officers and Trading Standards officers with specialisms in Housing related engagement and enforcement.
- A new enhanced landlord accreditation scheme.
You can read more about the proposals in the Council’s Better Homes for All report.
Telford & Wrekin Council’s Cabinet is recommended to approve the report’s recommendations when it meets on Thursday 15 February (Agenda Item 9)