Durham County Council (DCC) are proposing to introduce Selective Licencing county wide!
Landlords could have to pay a licence fee of £590 per property!
Tenants could see rent increase by £5 per week!
Many Landlords could sell up. This could trigger falling house prices.
It will be harder for Tenants to find property to rent.
There are already more than 150 Acts of Parliament and 400 regulations affecting landlords in the private rented sector. As well as this, Councils also have several enforcement powers such as civil penalties and banning orders, and we feel that the Council should make full use of these powers before introducing a licensing scheme.
There is no definitive evidence to prove that selective licensing schemes on their own are effective but there is evidence that those with additional targeted and funded initiatives have improved specific areas. Landlords can reasonably ask if a combination of targeted initiatives and a co-operative scheme can be better.
There are alternatives such as a co-regulation scheme where good landlords work with the council in a self regulated scheme which deals with standards and complaints, whilst non-member landlords continue under the scope of local Authority enforcement.
We believe a Durham PLuSS co-operative scheme working with Durham council is a better way.
Good landlords can sign up to the scheme and council tax and land registry records could be used to help identify and target the criminal landlords who would not sign up to selective licensing and continue to ignore regulations by operating under the radar.