Selective Licensing in Telford Petition

It's a TAX on good landlords
Please sign our petition
Rents will rise in Telford as a result of “badly thought out” council plans to licence a selection of landlords, say Wrekin Landlords Association.
It is “the final nail in the coffin” for fed up landlords with some vowing to sell up rather than pay the controversial licence fee, which they claim is “nothing but another tax,” they say.
Telford and Wrekin Council’s scheme to licence private landlords in seven selected areas of Telford will blight those areas and make the “grave housing crisis” even worse. It will mean less properties to rent especially hitting tenants on benefits, says association chairman Bernie Lewis.
They claim it is another stealth tax on the hard hit rental sector to raise £1.2m by the back door with landlords forced to raise rents to pay rising costs.
Many private landlords are already “on their knees” after a series of financial cuts.
Private landlords face paying £610 per property to the council which claims it can improve the standard of private rented homes and reduce litter, flytipping, crime and anti social behaviour.
But landlords say the council must solve the social problems by clamping down on rogue landlords and tenants instead of penalising good landlords.
“The council appears to be blaming private landlords for anti social behaviour and littering which is a nonsense. The council should concentrate on identifying the perpetrators who litter and carry out anti social behaviour and use the laws that are already here to deal with it.”
Mr Lewis adds that in a recent Government guide to local authorities, councils were advised to be pro-active to identify problem properties with targeted inspections and take enforcement action.
“Hard hit local private residential landlords have had enough. Many are planning to get out of the business. It has all become too much for many small landlords,” says Mr Lewis.
Cuts in mortgage relief, an increase in stamp duty, tax changes on property incomes and the removal of council tax exemption, are forcing people out of the rental sector, he warns.
“Instead of easing our burden, the council plans to increase it. Some landlords are now refusing to take benefit tenants.”
The landlords association held an emergency meeting on Tuesday the 21st to launch a campaign to fight the proposals due to be discussed by Telford & Wrekin Council's Cabinet meeting on Thursday the 23rd.
They urge all private landlords to sign a petition on We will fight the case in the courts, if necessary.
It was a “cynical move” by the council to designate just under 20 per cent of properties as eligible for the licensing scheme as anything over that figure will trigger permission for landlords to object, says Mr Lewis.
Under the scheme, landlords and letting agents in Hadley, Leegomery, Malinslee, Hollinswood, Brookside, Sutton Hill and Woodside would be required to apply for a five year licence. Landlords face up to a £20,000 fine if they don’t comply.