Hillingdon additional licensing scheme extended until 2020
Hillingdon Council have extended their additional landlord licensing scheme for another five years, making it more important than ever that landlords check whether their rental properties need a licence.
The scheme, which applies to two storey Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMOs) occupied by five or more people, covers a large area in the south of the borough and came into force on 9 November 2015.
The council says that the additional licensing scheme is an important part of their overall Housing Strategy and that the continuation of the scheme enables greater controls to be applied to HMO housing stock for the benefit of the tenants and surrounding neighbourhoods.
Under Hillingdon’s previous additional licensing scheme that ended in March 2015, the council licensed 362 properties out of an estimated total of 577. This suggests over a third of licensable HMOs managed to evade the first licensing scheme completely.
In the meantime, the initial licence application fee charged in 2015/16 has more than doubled from £480 to £980 per property and the discount for accredited landlords has unfortunately been removed.
Following expiry of their first additional licence, landlords are being charged £735 per property to renew the licence for a further five years.
Commenting on the new scheme, Richard Tacagni, Managing Director at London Property Licensing said:
“With additional licensing extended for another five years, it is important that Hillingdon Council step up promotional activity and initiate enforcement action against those landlords who evaded the first licensing scheme completely.
“Without robust enforcement action, compliant landlords are burdened with extra costs, whilst rogue landlords continue to evade the law and place their tenants’ lives at risk“.
Research by London Property Licensing revealed that Hillingdon Council took five housing prosecutions over a three year period April 2011 to March 2014, so on average just under two housing prosecutions a year (read here).
For more information on property licensing in Hillingdon, you can visit www.londonpropertylicensing.co.uk/hillingdon.