09 Feb 24
2024 is already on track to surpass 2023’s record of 32 new schemes, with 19 selective and additional licensing schemes and consultations taking place within the first four months of the year.
Already this year, six new licensing schemes have begun in Greenwich, Nottingham, Islington, Warwick, and Luton.
London takes the lead with active consultations starting in Haringey, Lambeth, Waltham Forest, and most recently Bexley, all signalling a strong determination to implement new selective and additional licensing measures across the capital.
Luton has been the most recent council to implement new licensing schemes, with both additional and selective measures launching this week.
Around 14 schemes are also set to terminate this year, with a strong likelihood of scheme renewals.
The impending Renter’s Reform Bill and calls by landlords to discontinue selective licensing schemes makes it highly probable that councils will push to renew these measures before the passing of the bill.
Many councils are now issuing banning orders to landlord letting out an unlicensed properties, emphasising the common trend in councils for stronger enforcement against non-compliant agents and landlords in the face of unprecedented new schemes. That this approach is very similar to to the Post Office onslaught against sub-postmasters has not gone un-noticed.
2024 looks like it will be a pivotal year for property licensing in the UK. With a record number of new schemes and consultations, the landscape is shifting rapidly.
Landlords and agents must be vigilant in ensuring that their properties are licensed and compliant with even the most minute details of compliance with HHSRS, licence conditions, HMO Management Regulations as cash-strapped councils look to repair their failing budgets by what is rapidly becoming the biggest covert land grab via mafiioso-stye enforcement where the council is the sole beneficiary and the fines that councils help themselves to unchecked can represent up to half the value of the property.
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