A group of landlords in Oldham are set to present the local council with a petition opposing the town’s selective licensing scheme.
Local landlord Zahoor Ahmed says that he has a petition against selective licensing, which has been signed by 150 fellow landlords.
He asks: “Last year I was letting out a property and the tenant left without paying six months rent. Why aren’t they protecting landlords? This is unfair on a lot of people.”1
Landlords Sign Petition Against Licensing Scheme
Oldham Council has selected 16 areas in eight districts due to low housing demand.
Licensing has already been implemented in St. Mary’s, from 1st May this year, and Hathershaw and Waterhead from 6th July.
Additional schemes are due to be launched in Hollinwood and Primrose Bank from 1st September and in Coldhurst, Alexandra and Oldham Edge from 1st January 2016.
Oldham Council will charge landlords a license fee of £490 per rental property for a five-year period.
A council spokesperson states: “Many rented properties fail to meet the required standards, which can have a terrible impact on tenants.
“This scheme aims to ensure private landlords meet satisfactory standards. Landlords need to show basic safety checks have been carried out and they have appropriate management arrangements. All the money that comes in is put straight back into the scheme.”1
Oldham Council ran a consultation on the matter, which ended on 30th September 2014.
80% of 3,672 respondents agreed that selective licensing would improve the elected areas and 85% said they believe the council should have more control over how private landlords manage their properties.
Of the 249 landlords that responded to the consultation, only 20% thought that landlord licensing would have a positive effect on the selected areas.
Councillor Dave Hibbert, Cabinet Member for Housing, Planning and Transport, says: “It is clear from the consultation that our residents, including tenants in private sector homes, back our plans. Good landlords have nothing to fear from this scheme.
“Some landlords have expressed that they think it’s wrong to target all landlords and we have some sympathy with this view. However, selective licensing treats all landlords in an area the same and creates a level playing field.”1