County Durham wide scheme would be an unfair tax on landlords and tenants

Proposed Scheme license costs up to £590 per property but this could change. After 1 year Nottingham city council increased the license fee by over £100 as the original fee did not cover costs 

Associated costs, e.g. 5 yearly electrical inspection certificates (previously only required by HMOs), property works and lots of extra time and paperwork to prove compliance to licensing rules

Need to apply for a license in time or face large fines - up to £30,000!

Required to inspect properties regularly although tenants can refuse admission

Proposal requires privately rented housing owners to obtain 5 years of housing references for tenants

Concern on existing schemes that Selective Licence enforcement focus is on checking known good landlords who sign up, Rogue landlords continue to ignore it and fly under radar

Landlords organisations argue that the scheme unfairly penalises the GOOD landlords and GOOD tenants for doing absolutely nothing wrong.

Landlords will be left with no choice but to pass the cost of licensing onto tenants, in the form of higher rents

Darlington Council is a separate Unitary Authority and DCC cannot include Darlington properties in this scheme. An easy check is if your rental property pays council tax to Darlington it will not be included. However Darlington Council are likely to consider their own scheme if Durham go ahead as planned.

The council consultation questionaire is here

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