Councils to ‘approve’ professional landlords

Bournemouth Council has launched one of England’s first accredited landlord registers in a bid to tackle poorly-maintained properties and anti-social behaviour.

The scheme also covers Poole, Christchurch, East Dorset and Purbeck and will hold the details of accredited landlords and the properties they let.

The council is the one of the in England to create a register, allowing tenants to find out if their landlord is listed and complain to the accreditation body if they have any problems or concerns.

Robert Lawton, cabinet member for housing at the council, said the register will allow enforcement staff to focus on problem landlords and properties.

“To get this accreditation landlords need to meet certain criteria, so if they are on the register our officers know they have well-run properties,” he explained.

Focus on bad landlords

“They can then concentrate on those landlords who, for whatever reason, are not signed up, and will be better able to tackle the various problems caused by HMOs particularly in the Boscombe and Winton neighbourhoods.”

Council officers will still deal with urgent problems such as landlords who will not repair broken boilers.

The scheme has been welcomed by Bournemouth landlord Julia Carter, who agrees the register will give buy-to-let property owners more support and assure tenants that their landlords are professionals.

Bournemouth East MP Tobias Ellwood also praised the initiative.

A similar scheme has also been launched in Peterborough and is being run by the Landlord Accreditation Scheme in conjunction with the National Landlords Association and Peterborough City Council.

Improve standards

Landlords of private rented property in the city can join the scheme by completing a training course on renting property.

Adam Cliff, who is representing the scheme for the local authority, said it will improve rental and management standards and allows members to promote themselves as competent landlords in a highly competitive market.

Those who become part of the scheme can take advantage of free advice seminars and workshops on different aspects of operating and managing rental properties, discounts on Energy Performance Certificates and free access to the National Landlords Association library and services.



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