Council asks LZ readers for views on bid to increase PRS regulation

The boss of a large London borough has asked LandlordZONE readers who have properties within its borders to respond to the council’s consultation on a larger selective licensing scheme.

Tony Jemmott, who heads up Brent councils’ private housing team, says landlords and tenants have until 23rd January 2023 to respond before the council moves to win approval for the scheme, which is to be introduced in two phases.

These will replace the existing selective licensing scheme that was introduced in 2018 covering five wards within the borough, but which expired in May this year after running for five years.

Now, Brent is proposing to bring in selective licensing across 21 wards kicking off within just three wards that are the poorest and containing PRS stock most urgently in need of licensing, later expanding it with a further 18.

Due to its size, this designation would need confirmation by the Department of Levelling up Housing and Communities (DLUHC), but if given the green light would go live in 2024.

Consultation call

Jemmott (pictured) has urged any affected readers to fill in the questionnaire. “Whether you are a private tenant, landlord, managing or letting agent, local resident or business, we want to hear your views on the councils’ proposals for private property licensing in Brent,” he says.

If this all sounds familiar, then it landlords with good memories will recall that Brent tried a similar expansion in 2020 just before the Covid pandemic struck, this time increasing it to cover 15 wards.

The secretary of state at the time rejected its bid, with NRLA spokesperson John Stewart saying it would just “identify the good landlords who register and then tax them. [The proposals] do nothing to flush out the criminals who stay under the radar”.

Landlords wishing to let Brent know their views on the new proposals should fill it in here.

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