THE District Council has taken steps to shorten the length of licences for Houses of Multiple Occupation (HMO) in a bid to improve tenants’ living conditions.
Landlords letting out such properties will now need to apply for a new licence every three years - the previous licence period was five years.
The move follows a number of prosecutions of HMO landlords in recent months after they failed to properly maintain their properties and put their tenants’ safety at risk.
East Lindsey District Council said it was reducing the licensable term from five years as part of its continued efforts to drive up living standards for tenants.
The shorter term will mean the council can carry out more frequent inspections in order to alleviate any ongoing issues with regard to the HMO management regulations, and potential hazards.
Portfolio Holder for Housing at the District Council, Councillor William Gray, said: “Many HMOs in East Lindsey operate to a high standard but sadly some don’t.
“This policy decision means we will have a firmer grip on the standards in licensable HMOs and be better placed to take action should they fail to be maintained to a level that provides a dignified and safe way of living.”
An HMO generally needs to be licensed if it is a building used as permanent accommodation of three floors or more with at lease five tenants, with some shared facilities.
Anyone who owns such a property and is unsure whether it requires a licence, should contact the District Council on 01507 601111 for advice.