The government has given the go-ahead to Brent’s selective licensing scheme, with the council labelling it, “a major win for both renters and landlords”.
The scheme – one of the largest in the capital - is expected to go live in the spring when all landlords renting out properties in the London borough except in Wembley Park will be legally required to apply for a licence.
Wembley Park is the only ward where the number of private rentals in disrepair does not meet the critical threshold set by the government.
Councillor Promise Knight, cabinet member for housing, homelessness and renters’ security, believes the scheme will massively improve the standard of living for private renters who make up half of all Brent residents. It should also provide clarity for landlords and agents on their responsibilities around property management and safety.
At a time when housing is at a crisis point across London, the introduction of selective licensing will offer renters the assurance of security and safety, says Knight. “Brent will continue to work in partnership with good professional landlords but has a zero-tolerance approach towards rogue landlords,” she adds.
“Any rogue landlords in Brent should be on notice that this expansion means that there will be nowhere in Brent for them to hide.”
Earlier this year the council issued its first banning order against a landlord, preventing him from letting houses in England for five years. Brent has also licensed more HMOs than any other London borough and boasts one of the most proactive enforcement teams in the capital.
Details on how to apply for a licence will be announced in the new year.