Poverty and Inequality

04.04.19

Bristol council brings in licencing scheme for private landlords to protect renters

Private landlords in 12 areas across Bristol will now have to pay £1,200 for licensing to rent properties as part of a council’s bid to improve protection for renters.

Bristol City Council has agreed to expand the licensing scheme to wards identified as areas with high concentrations of houses in multiple occupation (HMOs), meaning landlords there will have to pay a fee which will fund the scheme and the inspection teams.

An independent survey commissioned by the council found that one in five of the properties were at an immediate risk to the safety of tenants, with one in three homes in Bristol rented privately.

It is expected to cost the council around £1m a year to inspect 6,000 properties, and landlords who don’t meet the required standards or refuse to get a license could be given substantial fines and enforcement action will be considered.

The scheme applies to HMOs, which are properties rented to three or more people who aren’t related, including hundreds of shared student houses, and the council has targeted the houses whose standards are more likely to be lower than the city average.

The council say the licensing scheme will help improve property conditions as officers will be able to inspect every privately rented property to ensure it meets regulations.

This comes as the university minister Chris Skidmore has warned that landlords who fail to meet standards for student accommodation will “face justice” under new regulations.

Councillor Paul Smith, cabinet member for housing, said: “I am delighted that this vital scheme is being rolled out across central Bristol. We know from experience that licensing is a good way to deal with issues of poor standards of accommodation and inefficient property management.

“Although most landlords are providing quality rented accommodation and a good service to their tenants, we are aware that a significant number of HMOs are being poorly managed and maintained in these areas.

“As the private rented sector continues to grow, it is vital that we continue to take steps to help protect vulnerable tenants and ensure that everyone in the city has access to decent housing.”

The licences will typically last five years, and several thousand licenses have already been issued following the scheme’s use in other parts of Bristol.

The chair of the Association of Local Landlords in Wessex, Rob Crawford, said: “We are aware there are landlords who are not as good as others and do need some help and education in providing the appropriate standard of accommodation.

“But why should good landlords be charged to address those issues from rogue landlords?”

Comments

There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment

 

public sector executive tv

more videos >

latest public sector news

The National Audit Office's guide to cloud services

25/06/2019The National Audit Office's guide to cloud services

The National Audit Office’s digital transformation expert, Yvonne Gallagher, focuses on assessing the implementation of digital and related... more >
How community-led initiatives can help save the housing shortage

19/06/2019How community-led initiatives can help save the housing shortage

Tom Chance, director at the National Community Land Trust Network, argues that community-led initiatives are a productive way of helping to solve... more >
Aberdeen's green transport fleet attracting international attention

19/06/2019Aberdeen's green transport fleet attracting international attention

Aberdeen City Council’s hydrogen spokesperson, councillor Philip Bell, highlights the Granite City’s determination to play a leading ... more >

editor's comment

25/10/2017Take a moment to celebrate

Devolution, restructuring and widespread service reform: from a journalist’s perspective, it’s never been a more exciting time to report on the public sector. That’s why I could not be more thrilled to be taking over the reins at PSE at this key juncture. There could not be a feature that more perfectly encapsulates this... read more >

last word

The importance of openness after Grenfell

The importance of openness after Grenfell

Following the recent Grenfell Tower tragedy, Lord Porter, chairman of the LGA, argues that if the public are going to have faith in the safety testing process then everything must be out in the o... more > more last word articles >
Cheshire East seeing success with university partnerships in children's social care

25/06/2019Cheshire East seeing success with university partnerships in children's social care

Cheshire East Council’s director of children’s social care, Jacquie Sims, explains how a new approach to training programmes for social care workers has brought better results. K... more >
The National Audit Office's guide to cloud services

25/06/2019The National Audit Office's guide to cloud services

The National Audit Office’s digital transformation expert, Yvonne Gallagher, focuses on assessing the implementation of digital and related change programmes. Cloud services can bring ... more >

the raven's daily blog

New rules to change the future of Social Value

05/06/2019New rules to change the future of Social Value

The government has announced the introduction of new rules to change the future of social value and make the way housing developers stump up the money for infrastructure both simpler and more transparent. These regulatory changes are designed to help achieve its ambition to deliver 300,000 extra homes per year by the mid-2020s.  ... more >
read more blog posts from 'the raven' >

comment

Peter Kyle MP: It’s time to say thank you this Public Service Day

21/06/2019Peter Kyle MP: It’s time to say thank you this Public Service Day

Taking time to say thank you is one of the hidden pillars of a society. Being on the receiving end of some “thanks” can make communit... more >
How community-led initiatives can help save the housing shortage

19/06/2019How community-led initiatives can help save the housing shortage

Tom Chance, director at the National Community Land Trust Network, argues that community-led initiatives are a productive way of helping to solve... more >
Aberdeen's green transport fleet attracting international attention

19/06/2019Aberdeen's green transport fleet attracting international attention

Aberdeen City Council’s hydrogen spokesperson, councillor Philip Bell, highlights the Granite City’s determination to play a leading ... more >
A fifth of public sector workers have never received a thank you from the people they serve

13/06/2019A fifth of public sector workers have never received a thank you from the people they serve

A fifth of the country’s public sector workers say they have NEVER received a ‘thank you’ for doing their job as Public Service... more >

interviews

Artificial intelligence: the devil is in the data

17/12/2018Artificial intelligence: the devil is in the data

It’s no secret that the public sector and its service providers need to invest in technology to help make better use of their resources. Bu... more >
Digital innovation in the public sector: The future is now

17/12/2018Digital innovation in the public sector: The future is now

One of the public sector’s key technology partners has recently welcomed a new member to its team. Matt Spencer, O2’s head of public ... more >
New Dorset Councils CEO on the creation of a new unitary: ‘This is going to be the right decision for Dorset’

05/11/2018New Dorset Councils CEO on the creation of a new unitary: ‘This is going to be the right decision for Dorset’

The new chief executive of one of the new unitary authorities in Dorset has outlined his approach to culture and work with employees, arguing tha... more >
Keeping the momentum of the Northern Powerhouse

15/10/2018Keeping the momentum of the Northern Powerhouse

On 6 September, the biggest decision-makers of the north joined forces to celebrate and debate how to drive innovation and improvement through th... more >

public sector focus

View all News