Crackdown on rogue landlords to extend across Rotherham

Private landlords in parts of two Rotherham suburbs will have to licence their properties and meet quality standards under a council scheme, provided the Government approves.

Monday, 10th June 2019, 11:41 am
New controls: Rotherham Council is introducing licencing for private landlords

Selective licencing, where landlords have to register with the authority and make sure their properties meet certain minimum standards for safety and suitability have been in place for several years in some districts.

Now the council has agreed that parts of Parkgate and Thurcroft will see similar schemes introduced.

But the new schemes will mean more than 20 per cent of the town’s private rented housing is covered by selective licencing and national rules means Government approval has to be sought when that threshold is crossed.

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The decision follows consultation in both areas, which Coun Dominic Beck, the council’s housing spokesman on the ruling Cabinet, said had widespread public support.

In Parkgate, private rented housing accounts for 61 per cent of housing and 64 per cent in Thurcroft.

Consultation is also expected in the Little London area of Maltby, which could see a similar scheme introduced there next year.

However, some streets currently subjected to selective licencing could be removed from the scheme, because of the progress made in improving conditions.

Coun Beck said 35 landlords had been prosecuted for failing to licence their homes, 23 prohibition notices had been imposed on homes deemed unfit for habitation and more than 2000 informal warnings given about housing standards.

*A public space protection order has been agreed for the Fitzwilliam Road area, following consultations about problems in the area.

However, consultations in the area revealed many complaints were about vehicles speeding and being badly parked, which cannot be dealt with through an order.

There were also major concerns about drug dealing and use, problems which cannot be properly addressed by a PSPO. It is proposed to ask for police action on speeding vehicles and to set up a multi-agency plan to deal with drug abuse.

The PSPO will be introduced, to focus on issues including noise, drinking, tidiness of business premises.