Licensing rules set to be extended to all HMOs in Warwick district - The Leamington Observer

Licensing rules set to be extended to all HMOs in Warwick district

Leamington Editorial 9th Aug, 2023   0

MORE shared homes in the district could be made subject to licensing rules in a bid to improve conditions for tenants.

Warwick District’s Council’s Cabinet was set to consider whether to implement an ‘additional licensing scheme’ for certain homes in multiple occupation (HMOs) when it met yesterday (Wednesday).

Following a public consultation which took place earlier in the year, councillors will examine the survey results and decide whether to extend the current scheme to households comprising three and four persons, as well as tenants living in purpose-built blocks of flats including student accommodation.

Under the current regulations only HMOs with five or more persons living as two or more households are subject to mandatory licensing.

HMOs have also been the focus of a string of complaints from residents in recent years – ranging from issues of noise to rubbish.

WDC housing spokesperson Coun Paul Wightman said: “There are around 600 HMOs already licensed under ‘mandatory licensing’ in our district and in the region of 800 HMOs which would be required to obtain a license under an ‘additional licensing’ scheme.

“Including more homes under our umbrella would ensure that landlords of HMOs submit detailed information regarding themselves and their properties including important safety documents such as fire alarms, gas and electrical safety certificates.

“If approved, it will also mean that properties are thoroughly inspected by council officers before a licence is issued to ensure they meet minimum standards with conditions requiring the landlord to maintain and manage the property effectively.

“This measure can only increase the level of assurance that can be provided to residents who live in these properties and will undoubtedly help to keep people safe.”

Should Cabinet agree to go-ahead with the additional scheme, further approval will be required by full council in the autumn to agree the licence fees.

If approved, it will then become a legal requirement to obtain a licence in order to operate any HMO in Warwick district from January.

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