would have many benefits all round, if legislated correctly.
Any training to provide an industry standard practice
would be welcomed with open arms by any landlord, as
long as they benefit from it and are not going to end
up out of pocket in order as they comply. The wider
community and local business would also feel the benefit
in licensed areas as crime, vandalism and anti social
behaviour should also be reduced and the area regenerating
itself as public pride is restored
will be a few who will fight any proposed legislation;
they will not want to be regulated as they fear that
it will impact on their income stream. The sad truth
is they are scared of something, be it a failure on
their part, or a cost implication. Meanwhile the savvy
investor will bite the bullet, spend the cash if necessary
and try to stay one step ahead of the game.
legislation is still being introduced, despite the promise
in November 2008 from Iain Wright MP, minister with
responsibility for the private-rented sector, who said
the Government was committed to not bringing forward
knee-jerk legislation that would hamper the growth of
the sector but, instead would target the rogue operators
which give responsible landlords a bad name. Currently
the NLA estimates that there are now 50 Acts of Parliament
and over 70 separate sets of regulation affecting landlords
with new legislation coming into force all the time.
Much of the new law is less than sympathetic to investors,
according to David Whitaker, of Mortgages for Business,
the buy-to-let broker. He says: “The past 18 months
have seen a raft of legislation that ignores the interests
of private landlords. We have seen an increase in housing
authority pathfinder projects – whereby the Government
now pays DSS tenants’ rents directly to the tenant
rather than the landlord, as well as the changes in
law relating to HMOs.
2008 Salford City Council became the first local authority
to introduce a selective licensing scheme in the Langworthy
and Seedly Regeneration areas. In 2009 Salford City
Council also became the first to prosecute a private
landlord for failing to obtain a licence required under
such a scheme. In addition to a £2500 fine, the
landlord faced costs and improvement orders of £20,000
to ensure that the properties were brought up to an
councils are also prosecuting landlords of HMO’s.
A Bolton landlord now has a criminal record and has
been fined by Salford Magistrates for failing to obtain
mandatory licence for a house in multiple occupation.
Since July 2006 it has been compulsory for landlords
of larger HMO’s to licence their properties and
Landlords can be fined up to £20,000 for failure
to obtain a mandatory licence. Similar instances have
also hit the press around the country and the courts
have been far from leinient. His Honour Judge Corrie
stressed that “authorities are right to be vigilant
concerning such infringements not only in terms of the
individual, but also to maintain public confidence,
For landlords large and small, there is a need to protect
the public, particularly those who rent properties...”.
The message to all landlords is make sure you,
your business and your properties are compliant with
the law and make sure you keep up with any changes in
legislation. In some areas change is necessary and if
it requires local initiatives to drive things forward,
then we should go with it, embrace it and live in the
hope that the changes are not too expensive.
supplied by Mike Clarke Property Investor