Scarborough Council fears ministers have gone cold on selective licensing after a year-long wait to get approval for its new plans.

Last summer, the authority voted for a new scheme to cover the Scarborough South area in the town’s Weaponness and Ramshill ward following a public consultation.

This needs government approval as it would take the total number of properties covered by selective licensing above 20%, however, councillors at a meeting of its lives and homes overview and scrutiny committee heard that there was still no news.

Housing manager Andrew Rowe (pictured, above) told the meeting the government had previously blamed Covid for the delay in making a decision.

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He said: “Despite lots and lots of chasing, including some lobbying by the [local] MP, the government has not made a decision on that third scheme yet and we sense that perhaps the government is becoming a little bit cold on selective licensing but we will see.”

Change of emphasis

Rowe added that a number of selective licensing applications from other authorities in recent weeks had been refused, suggesting a “change of emphasis or policy” from the government.

However, a Department of Levelling Up, Housing and Communities spokesman tells LandlordZONE that decisions to approve selective licensing schemes are made on a case-by-case basis and would not be drawn on whether there has been a policy change.

He adds: “Scarborough’s selective licensing scheme application is currently under consideration by the department.”

Councillors heard that one option was to end the first selective licensing scheme the council adopted in 2017 – in Castle and North Bay wards – as all the inspections in that area had been carried out, which would mean it would no longer need the government to sign off on the Weaponness extension.

All privately rented properties within parts of the Central ward in Scarborough were covered by a second scheme in 2019.

Watch the meeting.

3 COMMENTS

  1. That’s great news why not make it 10 times a year and make it 20 times easier. There are some morons highjacking our business and they are not LL’s or proper LL’s.

  2. the rent repayment scheme is open to abuse by tenants,
    Along with the deposit protection scheme, making it easy for tenants to claim a whole years rent back, and 3 times the deposit even when the deposit is returned.
    The tenants do not suffer in any way. Even if a Landlord has not filled the correct paper work.

    Landlords are being targeted by tenants, councils and government policy makers, looking for easy money

    We need a revue, Changes must be made.
    We are not here to shore up the lack of social housing or how poorly councils maintain their housing stock

    Most landlords are desent and carrie out repairs on time, return deposits and kindly give references so tenants
    can move on even if they have not been fair in keeping the property in good order.

  3. This article seems to have some substance to it at the time of writing in it 6 weeks ago. I am awaiting a decision on our own PRS selective licensing scheme and I have written to our PRS local authority in London to establish why there has been an unecessary delay in getting their 3rd party research company, MEL Research, to make official the outcome of it on their own website since September 2021. We are now in November 2021, 6 month since their consultation began, and a senior lead for housing within MEL Research claimed to me a week ago tomorrow that they had sent their own draft outcome to our local authority in mid October 2021, but the answer I got from our own local authority was that MEL Research had experienced problems and hence the delay.

    I suspect this is a case of our local authority refusing to accept the outcome of MEL Research’s draft outcome, and biding their time until the outcome suits our local authority’s agenda, and unjustifiably lines their severly broke pockets when implementing their own selective licensing of rental properties within the next 5 months from now.

    The MEL Research stats during the completion of their consultation did not bear out the need for the local authority to consider selective licensing to begin with in terms of ASBO’s throughout our borough when it was sent out to all residents from May to August 2021, with the deadline extended to September 2021 because all residents were not included and lost time to consider their views before August.

    Michael Gove has recently taken over Robert Jenrick’s role as Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government on 15th September, which also coincided with many other consultations being considered for other local authorties at that time, and perhaps Mr Gove will reverse the decision to proceed with this idea by his predecessor? Let’s watch this space..

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