Tough new licence policy for landlords

Fylde Coast Landlords Forum chairman Paul Bamber

Fylde Coast Landlords Forum chairman Paul Bamber

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A controversial scheme to impose tougher controls on landlords will be introduced in Blackpool after councillors gave it the go-ahead.

More than three quarters of resort landlords are opposed to the initiative which means they will have to pay up to £935 for a licence from March.

But a consultation found around two thirds of residents welcomed the move which it is hoped will tackle anti-social behaviour and improve housing conditions.

Blackpool Council’s executive voted unanimously to approve the scheme which will cover around 751 privately-rented properties in the South Beach area.

Coun Gillian Campbell, cabinet member for housing, said: “We are introducing this scheme to improve the quality of life for people living in this part of Blackpool. We will work with both landlords and tenants to achieve this.

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“This is a flagship policy for us. The scheme will support the work of the vast majority of landlords, while also clamping down hard on a significant minority who feel they are above the law and fail to manage their properties appropriately.

“This is just a start – in the future we hope to introduce the scheme, where appropriate, in other parts of the resort too.”

Selective licensing imposes conditions on landlords relating to issues including property management, fire safety and the selection and management of tenants.

But the Fylde Coast Landlords Forum says the council already has sufficient powers to tackle rogue landlords.

Its chairman Paul Bamber has warned the cost of paying for licences will leave landlords with less money to invest in their properties.