Some local authorities are using delegated powers to create new licensing schemes for landlords under the Housing Act 2004 – Havering included.
Licensing schemes were introduced in an effort to improve the quality and safety levels of the housing stock in a given area.
If your local authority has implemented a licensing scheme for landlords, it is usually the case that you will be required to complete an application form and send it to the local authority concerned. Various information regarding the property, its occupants and the type of tenancy being utilised will need to be completed.
The local authority will arrange for an inspection to take place. The Council’s officers will usually attend and notify the prospective landlord if any works are required to meet health and safety standards. Any alterations required will then be re-inspected at a later date to ensure compliance.
Failure to comply obtain a licence (where one is required) is a criminal offence which is likely to result in a significant fine for the landlord concerned.
Havering Borough Council has just announced its decision to exercise its power to create a licensing scheme for the area shown on the map below. As you can see, it covers a fairly wide area and will affect ‘Houses in Multiple Occupation’ unless the property is subject to a statutory exemption.
This new licensing scheme will take effect from 1 March 2018.
To find out how this may affect you as a buy-to-let landlord, please contact a member of our Residential Property team for impartial legal advice. Call on 01708 229444 or email us using our contact form.The contents of this article are for the purposes of general awareness only. They do not purport to constitute legal or professional advice. Specific legal advice should be taken on each individual matter. This article is based on the law as of November 2017.