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Council launches consultation on new selective licensing scheme

Nottingham City Council has launched a public consultation on plans to introduce a selective landlord licensing scheme in the city.

The consultation, which runs until 31 March 2017, offers local people, landlords, tenants, letting agents and other interested individuals and organisations the opportunity to comment on the proposal which would see a selective licensing’ scheme introduced requiring private landlords to obtain a license demonstrating that they and their properties met certain standards.

The council is concerned that the surge in privately rented housing in Nottingham in recent years has led to poor standards in the city’s PRS, having received more than 4,500 complaints from private tenants in the last four years.

Poorly managed and maintained properties in areas with a high proportion of private rented housing are also contributing to higher levels of crime and anti-social behaviour in those neighbourhoods, the council claim.

It is anticipated that the cost of the license, which would cover the majority of properties in Nottingham, would be £600 for five years with a proposed £140 discount for accredited landlords.

Councillor Jane Urquhart, the council’s portfolio holder for planning and housing, said: “The introduction of a licensing scheme for private landlords is a key objective in the Council Plan published last year in order to improve the quality of privately rented housing in the city

“People renting privately have a right to expect a decent standard of accommodation. Many of the 43,000 plus privately rented properties in the city are well-managed but, judging by the 4,500 complaints we have dealt with over the last four years, a significant number aren’t. Poorly managed properties also cause problems for local neighbourhoods affected by the crime and anti-social behaviour that can results.

“The council believes the introduction of a licensing scheme would not only bring benefits for tenants, local communities and council tax payers by reducing the cost of enforcement action necessary, but also landlords who, by obtaining a license at a reasonable cost, will be able to clearly demonstrate to prospective tenants that they meet required standards.

“We’re keen for as many people as possible have their say in the consultation and tell us what they think about the selective licensing proposal as a way of improving the quality of privately rented accommodation in the city.” 

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