News: London council wants to double scale of HMO licensing

Tue, 23 Feb 21

A London authority wants to extend its licensing regime for HMOs and landlords have just over two weeks left to respond.

Lambeth council’s new proposals would see licensing for all HMOs in the borough - double the number of HMOs currently licensed - and as usual the authority claims this will drive up standards.

“The aim is to ensure that tenants living in a licensed HMO can rent with confidence knowing that their property has been properly inspected and licensed by the council. Landlords also benefit as they can advertise a certified property which is clearly managed in a responsible manner and meets legal standards” says a statement from the council.

The private rented sector in Lambeth has grown significantly with just under 50,000 households; that’s 34.5 per cent of the borough’s households, compared to 20 per cent nationally. 

There are around 5,000 Houses in Multiple Occupation currently in Lambeth, which is more than 10 per cent of the sector.

Council deputy leader Jennifer Brathwaite says: “We have a huge number of residents living in private rented accommodation and we are determined to use the powers available to us to drive up accommodation standards for households while tackling rogue landlords and illegal HMOs.


“Many landlords operate responsibly, however, we are also concerned about those who rent out smaller HMOs and certain flats that are HMOs and fail to provide acceptable conditions.”

“Where landlords are failing to meet their obligations to their tenants we’ll take action, and have already imposed fines against those operating HMOs who have failed to meet the required standards. This latest move offers the opportunity to expand that protection to more households in the borough.”

The consultation closes on March 12 and you can make your views known here.

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