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Council pre-judges consultation saying licensing will improve renting

A council has gone out to formal consultation on a licensing scheme - but appears to have pre-judges the outcome.

It says it is inviting views via an online survey about a licensing scheme: but the authority's wording suggests it is already happy with the ideas because it claims the scheme “will improve the quality of rented accommodation” in the area.

Lancaster council currently operates a licensing scheme for HMOs.


It now says: “Introducing selective and additional licensing will allow the council to extend the benefits of licensing beyond HMOs and improve the management of all privately rented properties in areas which need it the most.”

The council now wants a licensing scheme in the West End of Morecambe. The area was selected for an initial scheme having the greatest density of private rented property in the district.

The consultation with tenants, landlords, managing agents and the public will also involve drop-in sessions.

Following the 10 week consultation exercise, final approval will need to be sought from Lancaster council's ruling Cabinet.

A council spokesperson says: "Everyone who rents should have good quality, suitable and secure housing which meets the legal requirements for being rented out.

“Protecting private renters and ensuring licensed rented homes meet certain conditions so they are safe, warm and well managed by their landlords is one of the key aims of the scheme.

"Landlords will be fully consulted and once a scheme is in place they will be supported to reach acceptable management standards where necessary."ton

The survey will close on August 14.

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    It will be a survey full of loaded questions, phrased in such a way, you’d feel unreasonable to say no.
    Do you think properties should be clean, safe and affordable?
    Do you think negligent landlords should be dealt with?
    Etc etc - the answers will be interpreted as support for their scheme which will be effectively just another tax.

    None of the questions will include the consequences of the scheme such as increased rents, less supply of rental stock etc.

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    Council Consultations are usually a farce.
    The Licensing Schemes consultations seemed a farce to me, they didn’t ask the Tenants or the landlords in particular but the general public whom I believe were the most respondents with no input and nothing to loose. How do they know any Tenant or Landlord wanted it and probably didn’t so I agree consultations are fixed.
    Then we have a Mayor who had a Consultation on ULEZ but ordered 200 cameras before consultations ended, its only pretend democracy.

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    We all know this is a guaranteed method of filling up the councils coffer’s 💵💵💰💰. They must be laughing at all landlords 😡

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    Nothing new, I think most Councils are guilty of manipulating these ‘consultations’ to guarantee the outcome they desire. IMO they are not really concerned about ‘ standards’ ( because mostly standards are entirely acceptable). It’s all about raising money.
    In Hastings, the ‘consultation’ was so obviously ‘rigged’ it was laughable. They introduced additional licensing, achieved very little and 5 yrs later, were refused consent to renew the scheme by the then Sec of state.
    The relationship damage with PLL’s is now biting them in the bum, very few PLL’s will have anything to do with them and of course they are now more than desperate for rental housing. All too typical of too many councils.


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