Property Licensing: Higher standards in Hammersmith and Shepherds Bush

Why Has H&F Council introduced Property Licensing for Landlords?

In an attempt to protect tenants from unscrupulous landlords, Hammersmith and Fulham Council have made property licensing mandatory throughout the borough. “We’re determined to protect renters,” says Councillor Lisa Homan, Cabinet Member for Housing. “Landlords (must) license their properties to meet higher standards for their tenants.” To date, over 2,100 landlords have applied to Hammersmith & Fulham Council for property licenses. Cllr Homan notes, “These new standards enable us to take action against poor landlords and against tenants who cause persistent levels of anti-social nuisance to their landlords and neighbours.”

Raising the Standard of Landlords in Hammersmith and Fulham

With one-third of H&F residents renting their homes, the licensing scheme will touch many Hammersmith and Shepherds Bush locals. John Horton, Director of Horton and Garton, says, “I firmly support the council’s efforts to raise the standards for all landlords across the borough. It’s important that they understand their landlord responsibilities and thankfully the majority are extremely responsible. It’s also great news for the huge number of local renters who now have more protection and can expect higher standards from landlords.” Fire precautions and adequate waste and recycling storage space are addressed within the licensing framework. The council has warned that landlords without the right license may face prosecution.

Pen and Paper Posing Question Are You Licensed? Referring to Property Licensing

Need help managing your Landlord Responsibilities?

For an informed conversation on licensing in LBHF don’t hesitate to contact Ashley Clements. Lettings Manager at Horton and Garton for a decade, he is fully up to date on the legal requirements for landlords and is available to discuss your licensing application over a cup of tea in our King Street office. He adds, “We appreciate that the licensing scheme is designed to protect tenants and also to benefit those landlords who are already adhering to best standards as obtaining a license will give them further peace of mind that all required safety measures are in place.

The cost and workload do however chip away at what are, for some landlords, thinning margins. Landlords should be looking for best value in the fee they pay their agent – expecting and receiving guidance and help to ensure they are compliant. I’m staggered by how often I visit potential new landlords and they’ve met other agents who do not advise them of licensing or worse still have no knowledge of it themselves. The best properties with responsible landlords will always attract the best tenants and achieve the highest level of rent possible.”

The ‘new standards package’ consists of five new measures:

• New standards for licensed rental properties to ensure tenants are safe and problems to neighbours, such as rubbish, are managed.
• Additional landlord licensing requires landlords across the borough to get a licence if they let a property occupied by at least three people who do not make up a single household and who share a kitchen, bathroom or toilet.
• Selective licensing requires all landlords letting a property on named streets, where anti-social behaviour has been a problem, to get a licence.
• A new landlords’ rental charter encourages landlords to commit to best practice in management, housing standards, living rent, charges, protecting tenants’ deposits and security of tenancies.
• A new social lettings agency puts potential renters in touch with the best local landlords who meet all the higher standards expected.
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Have you been properly advised on property licensing laws for landlords? We can help you to manage your legal requirements as a Landlord. Contact our lettings team on 020 8819 0511 today for more advice.