Tackling “rogue” HMOs: council gets tough on landlords thanks to vigilant residents

TOWN RESIDENTS HELPING: Wimborne Road in Winton

TOWN RESIDENTS HELPING: Wimborne Road in Winton

First published in News by

VIGILANT residents and council enforcers are helping to tackle “rogue” Houses of Multiple Occupation (HMOs) in Bournemouth.

The council said it was committed to taking tough action to enforce HMO legislation, which requires landlords to submit a change of use planning application if they want to create a new shared house of three or more people.

These applications then are refused if more than 10 per cent of the properties within 100m radius are already HMOs. This can often be the case in Winton, where there are a high number of student houses, and Boscombe, where they are a large number of bedsits.

Recently, the council refused change of use permission to a property in Parker Road, Winton, which was being used as a HMO without the correct permission.

Winton East Cllr Pat Oakley, pictured, said this was an example brought to the council’s attention by vigilant residents. “There is a vigilance locally and residents are very good at identifying rogue HMOs,” he said.

“If there are any, they need to apply for planning permission and if the area has a high percentage of HMOs they should expect to be refused.

“I know there are other properties in the area being looked into at this time.”

Gary Josey, Bournemouth council’s service director for housing, said: “We are committed to raising the standards of housing in Bournemouth and we will take tough action where landlords are in breach of management regulations and licensing conditions.

“The council has implemented a number of measures to achieve this, including the appointment of a specialist officer to target rogue landlords, focused enforcement action, a stronger landlord accreditation scheme and closer working with the police, university and the community to bring about the improvements needed.”

Comments (4)

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1:42pm Tue 26 Aug 14

Stuart_Lane says...

Unfortunately the council doesn't have a register of HMO's, it has to piece together an incomplete picture from council tax records, the voluntary license scheme and now residents flagging up unregistered HMO's. Surely it is time for a self funded COMPULSORY license scheme. With this in place the council would KNOW where the HMOs are and would also have the ability to revoke a license if a where properties are poorly managed and have become a living hell for neighbors. This would also address the issue of party houses.
Unfortunately the council doesn't have a register of HMO's, it has to piece together an incomplete picture from council tax records, the voluntary license scheme and now residents flagging up unregistered HMO's. Surely it is time for a self funded COMPULSORY license scheme. With this in place the council would KNOW where the HMOs are and would also have the ability to revoke a license if a where properties are poorly managed and have become a living hell for neighbors. This would also address the issue of party houses. Stuart_Lane
  • Score: 4

2:15pm Tue 26 Aug 14

Bob49 says...

or simply inspect the properties and pay WHAT THEY ARE WORTH when it comes to housing benefit and not the maximum allowable

that way there would be some pressure on landlords to keep these properties up to scratch

at the moment the only incentive is to cream off as much as possible in rents whilst spending the minimum in maintenance
or simply inspect the properties and pay WHAT THEY ARE WORTH when it comes to housing benefit and not the maximum allowable that way there would be some pressure on landlords to keep these properties up to scratch at the moment the only incentive is to cream off as much as possible in rents whilst spending the minimum in maintenance Bob49
  • Score: 2

3:29pm Tue 26 Aug 14

Lord Parkstone says...

Easy way to start is go visit all the immigrants locally and see how many people live there. Its the norm for them to sleep in the beds in rotation a day and a night shift. They do it like this because it keeps their costs down so they can send more money out of the country and back home as well as surviving on the minimum wage. The social must have a record of who lives where though due to all the handouts they get just for arriving here.
Easy way to start is go visit all the immigrants locally and see how many people live there. Its the norm for them to sleep in the beds in rotation a day and a night shift. They do it like this because it keeps their costs down so they can send more money out of the country and back home as well as surviving on the minimum wage. The social must have a record of who lives where though due to all the handouts they get just for arriving here. Lord Parkstone
  • Score: 5

2:15pm Thu 28 Aug 14

Townee says...

It's a pity the licensing couldn't be retrospect for all student house where anti social problems exists.
It's a pity the licensing couldn't be retrospect for all student house where anti social problems exists. Townee
  • Score: 0
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