Tenants living in one of the most deprived areas in Norfolk to face rent price hike
PUBLISHED: 09:38 01 November 2018 | UPDATED: 13:43 01 November 2018
Tenants living in one of the most deprived areas in Norfolk will face a rent price hike due to new council red tape, according to ‘fed up’ landlords.
A selective landlord licensing scheme for northern parts of the Nelson ward in Great Yarmouth was approved following a full meeting of Great Yarmouth Borough Council in September.
The proposals will mean private rented housing must be licensed and meet conditions around health and safety standards at a cost of £200 a year per property.
Landlords have hit back at the proposals which will come into effect on January 7, 2019, saying the scheme will hit tenants in the pocket.
John Barker, 58, a private landlord, who has ten properties in the ward has warned rent may rise by £5 a week.
He said: “I have not raised the cost of rent for the past eight years but this will leave me with no choice but to put up the prices.
“There has been very little consultation on this and the council just haven’t listened to our concerns. There are lots of tenants in the Nelson ward who are on the breadline and they are the ones who are really going to suffer.”
Landlords say the council has identified them as an “easy target” with those most deprived set to suffer.
The selective licensing scheme is being brought in to give the council additional powers to tackle poorly managed privately rented property.
Shadow chair of the housing and neighbourhoods committee, Bernard Williamson said the scheme will “bring the standard of housing in the area to a level playing field”.
Chairman of the Great Yarmouth branch of the Eastern Landlords Association, Paul Cunningham is disappointed the council has approved the scheme and believes landlords are bring “punished”.
He said: “Landlords will have no choice but to pass on the cost to tenants. They already have to pay enough tax as it is and they should not be expected to take the hit on this as well.
“There are some council owned properties which have really bad living conditions and these won’t be subject to the licensing scheme.”
The council ran a ten-week public consultation from June to August which saw 93pc of landlords and letting agencies oppose the selective licensing scheme.