North East Lincolnshire Council has been running a public consultation on proposals to consider implementing a selective licensing scheme in parts of East and West Marsh in Grimsby.
The proposals would see landlords of private rented accommodation in parts of the East and West Marsh wards requiring a license to continue to let their premises. To get a license, landlords and letting agents would need to ensure that each property in these areas meet a set standard and that they manage their tenants in an appropriate manner.
Updating the public on the consultation, Councillor John Fenty, deputy leader of North East Lincolnshire Council and portfolio holder for housing, regeneration and skills, said:
“We remain fully committed to doing what we can to improve the standards of private rented accommodation in our area and come down hard on those landlords that are exploiting their tenants by providing substandard property.
“However, in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, we are keen to understand the economic impact caused by the virus, before taking any decision on the scheme.
“The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government produced guidance in June 2020, asking local authorities to pause the process of implementing any selective licensing scheme wherever practicable, extending the consultation period wherever possible to a date more suitable. Pausing our consultation will mean we are not in conflict with the latest government advice regarding the COVID-19 outbreak.
“Pausing the scheme provides an opportunity to understand the economic impact caused by the virus, before taking any decisions.
“We are working with landlords to ensure that fewer tenants are evicted due to the financial impact of COVID-19, and now is not the time to place further financial burden on the sector.
“We will continue to run the consultation to give as many people as possible the opportunity to have their say on the proposals.
When we have a greater understanding of the longer term impact of COVID-19 on the economy, I will look to reconsider these proposals.
“In the meantime, the Council remain committed to ensuring landlords abide by Housing Legislation and taking strict action where regulations are flouted and will be taking steps to tighten our enforcement procedures.”
People can still have their say on the proposals by visiting www.nelincs.gov.uk/have-your-say.