News

Havering Council to push ahead with plans for landlord licensing scheme

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Havering Council has reaffirmed its intention to implement a landlord licensing scheme following debate at the Council meeting on 14 September 2016.

This follows the implementation of a HMO Article 4 Direction which came into force on 13 July 2016 (read here), removing permitted development rights for new HMO developments in the borough. 

A motion presented at the Council meeting on behalf of Havering Council’s Labour Group read:

This Council reaffirms its decision to introduce an Article 4 Direction and an effective Licensing Scheme of Private Landlords as soon as it can and further agrees as a matter of priority to ensure that it takes action under the Housing Act 2004 when it has concerns about the quality of accommodation provided in residential property within the Borough and also to use both housing and planning powers simultaneously to take action against rogue Landlords”.

The motion was then amended by the Conservative Group to read:

This Council brought Article 4 Directions into force on 13 July 2016 and reaffirms its decision to bring an effective Licensing Scheme of Private Landlords as soon as it can and further agrees as a matter of priority to ensure that it takes action under the Housing Act 2004 when it has concerns about the quality of accommodation provided in residential property within the Borough and to work with the Council’s partners to use all available powers (including anti-social behaviour, housing and planning) to take action against rogue Landlords”.

The amended motion was unanimously carried at the Council meeting by 46 votes.

A further motion by the Residents’ Group complaining about the lack of enforcement in Havering was withdrawn and will be resubmitted at the next meeting.

Research by London Property Licensing has placed Havering Council at the bottom of the league table when it comes to housing enforcement action. There have been no prosecutions of landlords under the Housing Act 2004 and no Rent Repayment Orders obtained over the last five years. It seems this may be about to change.

For further information on housing regulation in the London Borough of Havering, visit www.londonpropertylicensing.co.uk/havering

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