Landlord licensing is a highly contentious issue. Local authorities maintain that landlord licensing is the best way to raise standards in the private rental sector and root out rogue landlords, but many landlords don’t agree. The costs are often high and since rogue landlords are unlikely to apply for a landlord license, it doesn’t make much difference. However, this hasn’t stopped a number of local authorities going ahead with consultation schemes prior to the introduction of licensing in their area.
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Enfield Council’s Nightmare Before Christmas One landlord decided to fight against the introduction of landlord licensing in his area. Constantinos Regas, a landlord with just one property in Enfield, London, was so incensed at the thought of being charged for a license to rent out his property that he made a point of speaking out against landlord licensing at every available opportunity. He even warned the council that a judge had said part of the borough’s landlord licensing scheme was “arguably unlawful”. Sure enough, a High Court ruling issued just before Christmas found that Enfield Borough Council had failed to undertake sufficient consultation and that its landlord licensing policy had been implemented unlawfully.
Croydon Council Extends its Licensing Consultation Plans As a result of the Enfield Council High Court decision, Croydon Council is how having cold feet about the introduction of its own landlord licensing scheme. The original consultation only involved landlords, residents and businesses in the Croydon area, but this has been extended to include landlords and residents from neighbouring boroughs.
The extended consultation will be more costly, but as yet the council has failed to reveal exactly how much extra its council taxpayers will be expected to fork out.