Tuesday, 8 March 2011

Landlord fined for ignoring council warnings

A landlord in Leeds has been fined over £2000 for failing to licence his property properly.

At Leeds Magistrates Court on Thursday 3 March 2011, Mr Samuel Arthur Cross pleaded guilty for failing to apply for a Selective Licence for his property at 3 Clark Crescent in Leeds.

Mr Cross was fined £1000 with costs of £1240.40 plus a victim surcharge of £15.00.

As part of a campaign to improve housing in the Cross Green and East End Park part of the city , the Selective Licensing Scheme ensures that all owners of privately-rented properties need a licence to operate. Failure to get a licence, or comply with the conditions, can lead to a fine.

Mr Cross stated that he could not remember receiving any letters despite being sent numerous warnings by the Selective Licensing Team to apply for the five-year license, which cost just £525 per property covering a five year period.

The purpose of the licence is to allow the council to attach conditions that ensure appropriate property and management standard are adhered to.

Councillor Peter Gruen, Leeds City Council executive board member with responsibility for neighbourhoods and housing said:

“This prosecution is a further example of Leeds City Councils’ determination to pursue and prosecute landlords under the Selective Licensing provisions.

“Our selective licensing team has been very successful since the scheme was introduced in October 2009, and have pushed through over 25 prosecutions already, making us one of the most, if not the most successful councils in the UK for dealing with landlords without a selective licence.”

Notes to editors

Selective Licensing was introduced following the presentation of a business case which was presented to the secretary of state in May 2009. The area of Cross Green and East End Park was selected due to being identified as having a high degree of empty properties in the area.

In May 2009 the Secretary of State granted Leeds City Council permission to introduce Selective licensing under the provisions of Part 3 of the Housing Act 2004 in specific areas of Cross Green and East End Park. From the 1st of October 2009 Selective Licensing came into force.

Under the Act any person, owner or landlord who is in control of a property which is being let /rented out within the Selective Licensing Area of Cross Green and East End Park must apply for a licence.

The cost of the five year licence is normally £525 which equates to approximately £2.00 per week over a five year period.

Where a landlord holds a current HMO Licence for a property within the Selective Licence Area they do not need to apply for a further Licence under the Selective Licensing provisions.


Ends

For media enquiries, please contact;
Cat Milburn, Leeds City Council press office (0113) 247 4450
Email: Catherine.milburn@leeds.gov.uk