New licensing scheme proposes sliding scale depending on past performance

Barking and Dagenham council’s proposal for a replacement Selective Licensing Scheme, along with a new Additional Licensing Scheme, signals the ongoing effort to ensure quality housing for residents in the private rented sector. The existing scheme, which has been in place since 2015 and has licensed over 17,000 properties, reflects the council’s commitment to regulating rental properties and maintaining housing standards.

The introduction of a new Additional Licensing Scheme to cover small Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMOs) that fall outside the scope of mandatory licensing demonstrates the council’s recognition of the diverse housing landscape and the need to address different types of rental properties.

The proposal to offer discounts on licensing fees for landlords who meet certain criteria, such as demonstrating compliance with standards through audits or accreditation, is a proactive approach to incentivizing good practice among landlords. By rewarding compliance with discounts, the council aims to encourage landlords to maintain and improve their properties, ultimately benefiting tenants and the wider community.

A council spokesperson’s emphasis on the importance of private rented properties in meeting housing needs underscores the collaborative approach between the council and landlords to ensure the provision of quality homes for tenants. By working closely with landlords, the council seeks to foster a culture of responsibility and accountability within the private rental sector, while also taking enforcement action against those who fail to meet the required standards.

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