Licensing schemes look to substantially increase

A surge in property licensing schemes and consultations in the UK in 2024, as reported by Kamma, indicates a shifting landscape for landlords and letting agents. With a record number of new schemes and consultations, 2024 is poised to surpass the previous year’s figures, reflecting the evolving regulatory environment in the rental market.

Orla Shields, CEO of Kamma, emphasized the significance of 2024 as a pivotal year for property licensing in the UK, urging landlords and agents to remain vigilant in ensuring compliance with licensing regulations. The introduction of six new schemes in locations such as Greenwich, Nottingham, Islington, Warwick, and Luton, along with active consultations in London boroughs like Haringey, Lambeth, Waltham Forest, and Bexley, highlights the high demand for selective and additional licensing measures, particularly in urban areas.

The impending expiration of fourteen schemes this year presents an opportunity for councils to reassess and renew their licensing measures, especially in anticipation of potential changes brought about by the Renters (Reform) Bill. This legislation could potentially impact councils’ ability to impose selective licensing schemes, prompting them to take action before its passage.

Kamma also points to the enforcement efforts of councils like Newham, which issued its first banning order to a landlord for renting out an unlicensed property. This underscores a broader trend among councils to crack down on non-compliant landlords and agents in response to the growing number of licensing schemes.

Overall, the data from Kamma reflects a dynamic regulatory landscape in the UK rental market, with councils actively implementing and reviewing licensing measures to ensure compliance and protect tenants’ rights. Landlords and agents are advised to stay informed about these developments and proactively address any licensing requirements to avoid penalties and maintain legal compliance.

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