A council wants to introduce private rental sector licensing as part of a pledge made back in 2018.
Plymouth’s Labour controlled council pledged two years ago that: “The vast majority of landlords in Plymouth are good and take care of their properties, but there are far too many poor quality homes. We will toughen up enforcement of housing in the private rented sector to drive up standards for renters. If, within 12 months, the private rented sector has not taken substantial steps to improve standards, we will begin the process of introducing licensing schemes for the private rented sector.”
Now it says new licensing proposals - along with national initiatives such as the government’s drive for increased energy efficiency in rental properties - will drive up standards.
A council spokesman says: "We know that most landlords in Plymouth take seriously the responsibilities they have towards their tenants. What these policies do is ensure is that the small minority who take their tenants for a ride cannot fall through the cracks; cannot make excuses and most importantly; cannot exploit the people who pay them hundreds of pounds a month in rent.”
He continues: "We said we would drive standards in the private rented sector up and with policies like these, that's exactly what we're doing.”
Part of Plymouth’s licensing proposals involve asking landlords to pay just for the application to get a licence - they pay again if they are successful and a licence is granted.
A council statement claims this approach is “increasing fairness to potential landlords by only charging the second stage fee for successful applications.”