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Landlord licence plan aims to axe rogues

Landlords could have to apply for a licence to let residential properties in Government plans to clamp down on rogue landlords.

They will have to pay around £50 to register with a national body and comply with standards. It would have the power to strike off anyone who does not comply with the standards.

National Landlords Association senior policy adviser Elizabeth Brogan says the NLA welcomes the proposals as long as they do not deter good landlords. She says: “Landlords would get penalty points for minor offences, like you do with a driving licence, and in a worst-case scenario they could lose their licence.

“The private rental market is the last sector that is still housing people. If there is any restriction on that, then the sector will contract and where are people going to be housed in the future?

“We are concerned to make sure the proposals work for the responsible landlords who are doing a good job already. We have always wanted to see rogue operators eliminated. The proposals have potential but there is a lot of detail to be worked out.”

London & Country technical manager Richard Morea says: “Professional landlords will not worry about this as they are well versed in what they have to do. The question is who is going to police this?”

In a separate move this week, The Association of Residential Letting Agents is introducing a licensing scheme and a code of practice for letting agents. Members of the scheme will have to hold a professional qualification relating to lettings and have professional indemnity insurance.

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