North West

Manchester City Council consider alternatives to licensing

RLA
Written by RLA

Private properties and landlords requiring licences is becoming so common place that it would be easy to assume a national mandate had been written. However, this is not the case and Manchester City Council has learnt from previous schemes that licensing does not work. The Council is considering more targeted action for better results…

Private properties and landlords requiring licences is becoming so common place that it would be easy to assume a national mandate had been written. However, this is not the case and Manchester City Council has learnt from previous schemes that licensing does not work. The Council is considering more targeted action for better results.

Manchester ran a selective licensing scheme for a full five years and concluded the scheme was not worth the time and money. This experience has led Councillors into considering alternatives to traditional licensing.

Some proposals include providing tax breaks to good landlords, while ‘zero tolerance’ sanctions on criminal landlords will send a clear message to perpetrators. The council is to lobby Government for new powers under the promises of devolution.

These powers would give the Council the ability to effectively target the small number of rogue landlords that tar the entire Private Rented Sector (PRS).

They also aim to deal with anti-social tenants who can cause as much misery to the sector as criminal landlords. Arguments that licensing as a ‘one size fits all’ for councils are starting to wear thin with landlords successfully challenging proposals, most notably, such as Enfield and Hyndburn.

The RLA is against licensing in general and welcomes Manchester Council’s progressive thinking. Further details are expected and hopefully the scheme will improve private renting in the Borough.

The RLA supports the notion of ‘Co-regulation’ where compliant landlords are allowed to self-regulate while others are subject to local authority regulation and enforcement.

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About the author

RLA

RLA

The Residential Landlords Association (RLA) represents the interests of landlords in the private rented sector (PRS) across England and Wales. With over 23,000 subscribing members, and an additional 16,000 registered guests who engage regularly with the association, we are the leading voice of private landlords. Combined, they manage almost half a million properties.

1 Comment

  • We’ve been undertaking area -based initiatives and advising local authorities regarding their worth. We have the ‘Leeds Neighbourhood Approach Team’ which works pro-actively & exclusively on area – based projects in conjunction with partners. The results have been pleasing. There are three area-based initiatives and a specific project where flats above shops have been targeted. Our neighbourhood approach has involved using existing Housing Act and general environmental health provisions. The true success comes in getting other internal/external partners involved. Information, knowledge and experience is shared and the outputs are magnified, Our selective licensing scheme started in 2009 and expired in 2014. The Leeds Neighbourhood Approach feels similar to our selective licensing scheme, albeit shorter in duration.

    https://twitter.com/LeedsPRSHousing

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