Author: Tracie Croft
On 18 April 2017, Doncaster Council opened consultation on the introduction of a Selective Licensing Scheme for privately rented properties in parts of Edlington; likely to be predominantly the Royal Estate.
The purpose of the scheme is to help tackle anti-social behaviour in the area.
What is Selective Licensing?
The Council has the authority to implement a specific licensing scheme for privately rented properties within areas where there are high levels of anti-social behaviour. This is normally done if they believe that Landlords are failing to play their part in preventing or tackling tenant’s anti-social behaviour. The schemes are applied to selective areas and normally last 5 years.
Hexthorpe currently has a selective licensing scheme operating throughout the whole area and according to Doncaster Council this has reduced anti-social behaviour in that area.
What does this mean for landlords with properties in Edlington?
Landlords will need to apply for a licence to allow them to let the property to tenants.
Landlords will also be required to pass a ‘fit and proper persons’ test. This means landlords who have been prosecuted for illegal eviction or harassment of tenants may not be granted a licence and therefore cannot let out their property within Edlington.
Landlords will also need to abide by certain obligations imposed on them by the Council, for example; obtaining tenant references, signing anti-social behaviour agreements, maintaining the property to a required standard and ensuring the property is not overcrowded. This list is not exhaustive and a full list of requirements can be found by visiting www.doncastercouncil/selectivelicensing.gov.uk.
How much is the licence?
The licence fee will be set at a one -off cost of £515.00 when purchased directly from the Council for both single and multiple properties or £80.00 if purchased from an Approved Partner Accreditation Scheme which is currently Home Safe Scheme Limited.
Some properties such as HMOs will be exempt from the scheme. This should be checked directly with the Council.
What happens if I don’t apply for a licence?
If the scheme is implemented and you do not apply for the licence within 3 months, you will be charged an additional £80.00. If the licence is not applied for within 6 months, an unlimited fine and/or a civil penalty of up to £30,000 may be issued.
The Council will be conducting searches and inspections to ensure that all properties have a licence and that both Landlords and Tenants are abiding by the conditions of the licence.
What do I need to do now?
Doncaster Council will be holding two information days specifically for Landlords within the area:
Monday 23 May 2017 10am -1pm Civic Office, Waterdale, Doncaster
Thursday 8 June 2017 2pm – 5pm Civic Office, Waterdale, Doncaster
Should the scheme be approved it will start in December 2017. This means that all Landlords within the selective area must have a licence by March 2018.
If you are Landlord and would like advice regarding the implications this proposed Selective Licensing Scheme may have on you and your properties, we have a dedicated Landlord team on hand to answer any questions or concerns you may have. You can contact us on 01302 320621 or alternatively email us at email@example.com.