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What is Selective Licensing?

What is Selective Licensing and why introduce it in Ashfield?

The Housing Act 2004 provides councils with the power to introduce licensing of privately rented properties in selected areas with the aim of improving conditions for local tenants and the surrounding community.

Selective Licensing requires all private rented properties within the designated area to be licensed. Certain standards and conditions are required to be met in order for a licence to be granted.

We recognise that there are many good landlords in the licensing areas, however there are also problems associated with poor quality or hazardous rented property, transient populations, poorly behaved tenants and anti-social behaviour which can have a detrimental effect on the community.

As an area becomes less attractive, properties are left empty or increasingly are purchased by speculative investors. These landlords may have no interest in the area and often rent to tenants who have not been properly vetted, leading to further anti-social behaviour and decline. 

Selective licensing was first introduced in parts of Stanton Hill and Sutton Central (New Cross) for a 5 year period, commencing February 2017. In late 2021 a review of the schemes was conducted. The review concluded that there had been improvements in property condition and management practices but that it remained work in progress and some wider ASB and community based issues persisted.

The review recommended renewing selective licensing in the designated areas albeit with revised geographical boundaries and a review of the principles of the schemes and scheme conditions.

Under the terms of the new schemes the Council believes that Selective Licensing will benefit the designated areas by increasing demand for property by:

  • Ensuring privately rented properties are well managed
  • Tackling unprofessional landlords and supporting good landlords
  • Reducing anti-social behaviour through more stable communities, more responsible and knowledgeable tenants and fewer empty properties
  • Ensuring the local area is a more attractive place to live
  • Encouraging responsible residents to stay.

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