Calls for HMO overhaul

Posted: 13 Nov 2007 10:55:23 GMT


            Property News - Calls for HMO overhaul

There are calls for a major overhaul of the licensing scheme for Houses in Multiple Occupancy (HMO).

There are calls for a major overhaul of the licensing scheme for Houses in Multiple Occupancy (HMO).

Heritable Bank says that the current scheme, introduced in July 2006, is inconsistent and something of a mystery to many landlords.

The bank claims that many investors have no idea what the licensing scheme entails and it has revealed that many local authorities are charging different amounts in licensing fees.

According to Heritage Bank, landlords can expect to pay £80 per year for a licence in Hillingdon, London, while those in Newcastle must fork out £1,100 per year.

Mark Sismey-Durrant, chef executive of the bank, said that an overhaul of the system is needed.

"This scheme had laudable intentions of raising the quality at the lower value end of the private rented housing sector, but was introduced with no central guidelines on cost or structure and the results were entirely predictable; it has become a revenue earner for the local authorities, instead of a method of improving standards in the private rented sector," he commented.

"The government must urgently review the framework for licensing HMOs, so that all parties know what is required of them and what the likely cost to them will be," added Mr Sismey-Durrant.

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