Council drops lettings licensing scheme after massive backlash
This is a rare story: a council has dropped a plan for a lettings licensing scheme as a result of 900 people responding to a consultation, the biggest feedback in the council’s history.
Telford & Wrekin council wanted a selective licensing scheme but as a result of the consultation are now having a five-point crackdown on abuses connected with rental property, without the need for landlords to buy licences.
The Shropshire Star newspaper says that under the original plans, private landlords in certain areas of Telford would have had to buy five-year licences before letting out properties.
However, the new plan instead includes a ‘rogue landlord taskforce’, an enhanced set of licensing conditions for HMOs, a new housing enforcement policy, a bigger environmental cleaning team to tackle fly-tipping, and more enforcement officers.
The selective licensing proposal was only for specific areas whereas the new measures will be across the entire council patch.
A council spokesman says: “We have to invest in this, working with others and partnership to make it work. If it doesn’t, we might have to revisit selective licensing. We’re satisfied and confident there’s as many people as possible on board and that we’re going to make it work.”