Duncan Lewis

Residential Property

Commercial Property

Antisocial behaviour by tenants in private holdings would entail their landlords being fined

Date: (26 June 2012)    |    

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To tackle ‘broken down’ communities where tenants run riot a crackdown is being aimed where the landlords of such tenants would face fines up to £20,000.
Areas in the city where antisocial behaviour has been shattering the peace, officials were looking to impose new rules on private landlords.
There are some public housing providers like the Derby Homes which has to take immediate action if there is any antisocial behaviour reported but the same is not applicable with the private landlords.
Derby City Council was looking into Government rules which would allow it to create zones in which landlords must be licensed.
Initially the plan would be started in some areas of the city where residents have complained about antisocial behaviour from tenants in rented properties.
Private landlord Dawn Gee said people were already being driven away from certain neighbourhoods because of the problem.
She said that she sure was certain that action had to be taken as the landlords had a part to play.
There have been instances where people have been driven away from parts of Normanton due to the antisocial behaviour by gangs congregating and fly-tipping.
Stanton Street and Porter Road has lot many ‘To let’ boards adorning the properties.
Ms Gee said that the community had broken down and she was eagerly waiting for some measures which would bring about a change.
But she said that the new rule would be difficult to enforce as it would only end up with the law-abiding landlords who engage with this, while the problem landlords would ignore it. There was a question of how the council would enforce this?
The council has not yet outlined areas where the licensing could be introduced, but has said the new rules would allow it impose fines of up to £20,000 on landlords who did not comply.
Section 82 of the Housing Act 2004 allows councils to apply to the Government for approval to designate an area as a "Selective Licensing" area where all landlords in that area will have to hold a licence.
Landlords must comply with a test to make sure they are "fit and proper" to hold a licence, including ensuring that the properties are safe, they have no criminal convictions and they can, and will, work with the police and council to deal with antisocial tenants.
Those landlords who fail to get the licences face fines of up to £20,000 and landlords who don't meet their responsibilities could be penalised by up to £5,000.