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Coventry Considers Additional Licencing Powers

Posted by Richard Ward

Image courtesy of Flickr, Creative Commons

Coventry City Council is considering whether to adopt additional powers to help move students away from residential streets.

Houses in multiple occupation (HMOs) are regarded as a major concern for councillors as they make up a substantial proportion of the private rented market.

To tackle their growing use, the council is proposing new legislation that would hand it greater control on houses with three or more people.

It is hoped the new measures will address the impact of poor-quality HMO stock, as well as address anti-social behaviour, fly-tipping and noise nuisance.

Commenting on the idea, councillor Gary Ridley, said: "I think it is something that will help to improve the conditions of HMOs across the city."

"There is considerable concern about the amount of HMOs that we now have and some of these are starting to spread into residential areas."

"We have got a housing crisis in this city and in this country and when you look at the map you can start to see the significant areas of traditional family housing stock are being transferred to HMOs, many of which relate to student accommodation."

Whilst an Article 4 direction can be used tackle the problem, the current proposal is seen as providing a more effective solution, which if implemented will come into force in 2020.

The scheme is proposing that all owners of HMOs with three or more tenants from two or more households apply for a HMO licence, costing up to £1,250.

Applicants must also be able to demonstrate they are sufficiently competent and have suitable funding in place.