Deadline nears on landlord licensing consultation

 

There is a less than a week to go to have your say on proposals to introduce a licensing scheme for Liverpool’s private rented properties.

The deadline for landlords, tenants, residents, businesses and other organisations to air their views on the scheme is 16 June.

This is the last week of a 12 week consultation programme in which everyone has been  given the chance to have their say on the proposals, which aim to drive up the management standards of private rented properties in Liverpool and address the issue of low demand that the city currently faces.

There is still time to complete a short 10 minute on-line questionnaire about the proposed licensing scheme  at www.liverpool.gov.uk/selectivelicensing

The council’s proposals are set out in full and you can respond to questions around a range of issues, including whether you are in favour of the proposal. You can also say if you agree with the proposed conditions attached to the licence and about the fee structure.

Councillor Ann O’Byrne, cabinet member for housing said: “It is vital that we hear your opinions.  Citywide Selective Licensing is a proposal which we believe will improve the management of rented properties across the city.

“It is only one of a number of measures on housing that we are taking or proposing to address low demand and create a better environment for people to live and work in the city

“I know that there has been a lot of interest in the selective licensing proposal and it has triggered a lively debate and we welcome that. I would urge anybody with an interest to fill in the questionnaire or register their opinion.”

Independent research company Opinion Research Services (ORS) are  carrying out the consultation.

As well as filling in the questionnaire on-line, people can also write to Liverpool Selective Licensing Consultation, Opinion Research Services, Freepost (SS1018), PO Box 530, Swansea, SA1 1ZL – to leave written feedback or request a printed copy of the questionnaire. People can also leave comments by calling 01792 824 741 or e-mailing Liverpool.licensing@ors.org.uk

The results of the consultation will then be considered by the council before it makes a decision on whether and how to introduce selective licensing. If a decision is made to introduce a licensing scheme, it is expected it will come into force in 2015.

.Liverpool’s proposals for a citywide licensing scheme would mean that all landlords who privately rent properties in the city would require a licence for each of their rented properties. The Council would need to determine that the proposed licence holder is a ‘fit and proper’ person to manage their properties.

The plan aims to drive up standards of tenancy management, isolate poor landlords and make them easier to identify, secure a consistent level of responsible property management, and promote an understanding among residents about what they can reasonably expect from their landlord.

It also aims to help empower tenants – who currently have no way of knowing the quality of their prospective landlord – and help them make informed choices, promote greater confidence in the rental market and help improve demand.

Proposals for the licensing scheme were first considered at the end of 2012, and since then, the city council has been collating an extensive range of evidence from a number of internal and external sources to produce a comprehensive business case, paving the way to the start of the formal consultation.