20th Sep, 2018

New legislation could see landlords facing a hefty fine

Ian Hughes 14th Sep, 2018 Updated: 14th Sep, 2018

LANDLORDS who let shared houses without a licence in Warwick district could find themselves facing a £30,000 fine from next month.

New legislation will mean all shared properties – formally known as ‘Houses in Multiple Occupation’ or HMOs – with five or more unrelated tenants will have to be licenced.

Currently, only houses with three or more storeys let to five or more unrelated tenants require a licence – but from October 1 any property regardless of storeys, which is let to five or more unrelated people, will need to hold a licence from Warwick District Council.

Landlords and agents who fail to get a licence will be committing an offence and could be slapped with a fixed penalty notice of up to £30,000 or face prosecution.

The new rules affect several hundred known HMO properties in the district and over the past few months the council’s Private Sector Housing team has been working with landlords to help them through the licensing process, carrying out property inspections to make sure they are safe and meet the required standards.

District housing spokesman Coun Peter Phillips said: “We very much welcome these changes to HMO licensing, which give both tenants and landlords in our district reassurance that their property meets the highest standards of safety.”

“I would urge all landlords to contact us as soon as possible to ensure that they are fully compliant by the October 1 deadline.”

Visit www.warwickdc.gov.uk/hmo or call 01926 456358 for further details.

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