Nottingham City Council has now introduced a new licensing scheme affecting landlords in specific areas. It came into force at the beginning of this month, requiring 32,000 private rented homes to be registered for a standard fee of £780, or £480 for accredited landlords.
The aim of this new licensing scheme is to stamp out rogue landlords, however many landlords have voiced their opinion that the scheme is simply a way for the council to make more money.
Like many other councils across the UK in areas that have been introducing selective licensing schemes, Nottingham City Council believes that they are the way forward for improving the standards of rented accommodation and put a stop to rogue landlords.
With the current set fees per property for a licence, Nottingham City Council is set to bring in around £23m. A petition is currently running in protest of this scheme, calling for the Government to carry out a review. It focuses on the point that certain areas have been unfairly targeted by the scheme, “particular areas such as the Park Estate, Mapperley Park, Wilford and the City Centre”. It has so far received just over 1,900 signatures, and will run until 2nd January 2019.
Mike Siebert, chair of Nottingham Park Residents Association, has commented: “It [the licensing scheme] is just a way of making money for the council.”
“It backfires if rents go up. It is more expensive to rent than get a mortgage so it will be worse for them. If everyone puts up the price of rent what is it achieving?”
These added costs to landlords are likely to simply be passed on to the tenants in the way of increased rents. This would therefore have an adverse affect on the current situation for those who rent in the affected areas. It is possible that those who actually fall under the category of “rogue landlords” may simply ignore the licensing scheme, so it will be imperative that efficient enforcement will follow.