In a long reply on another post on HMOs last week, I concluded with the following paragraphs:
In essence this is where we are at today:
So what’s the likely result? Well You tell me, but what I see is that unless the Council decide to use Article 4, with the liberalised controls, the increased demand for HMOs will be met with an increased supply; the Council's enforcement team will do their best to police HMO quality, but if Council performance on the control of illegal conversions is anything to go by the impact will be limited.
What's the Solution?
I'd like to hear that I'm wrong in drawing the conclusions that I do, but it seems to me that we desperately need Article 4. Other Councils seem to agree. They're applying for it. Haringey say it’s too expensive. What exactly is the cost? I’d like to see the Council’s report on that.
I’ve been told that much of the cost is in the need to apply for the powers. However, in a previous post I quoted the Royal Planning Institute:
“Most importantly the Minister is also advising that councils with policies already limiting HMO development in parts of their locality, can bring in Article 4 Directions straightaway, without notice, to coincide with the national policy change.”
The problem we had with the spread of gambling establishments was principally an issue with national legislation that the Council had little influence on. With this issue, the Council has the power to control the unmanaged spread of HMOs. If five years down the line, the borough is witnessing multiple problems as a result of an explosion of HMOs we will be justified in pointing the finger at the Council as being responsible and justified in holding them accountable for failing to use the powers that are available.
I'm posting here just to check if folk think we should consider applying pressure for Article 4 or just let the fates do their worst?
I think we should definitely apply pressure and I would be happy to get involved...
I think we have to apply pressure for Article 4 otherwise there will be a lot more mismanaged HMOs.
Agree, me too.
Is anyone clear why Art 4 is so expensive?
Enforcement IS seriously lacking and will be even more so if Art 4 isn't introduced. I've also heard you can get things passed by going through the "right" channels anyway, even if they don't meet with planning policy and rules.
One of the vans in my street (this one actually has a parking permit) has "Rooms to let" emblazoned on the side. There is also a url to a website. Their mission statement from their website:
"We aim to provide students with the opportunity to live in a shared house, mixing with people from many different countries from around the world. Not only will you be able to experience the exciting sights and sounds of London from near central locations – but also learn about other cultures and nationalities and languages first hand."
The van is very clean and modern (and did I mention has a parking permit). I'm just trying to say that it appears someone is trying to do student accommodation nicely, not all HMOs are bad.
Hi John, thanks for the link.
It just shows you can't believe everything you see or read. I couldn't resist looking up their list of accommodation and lo and behold it includes one of the most troublesome, overcrowded, unlicensed HMOs in our area, I'm sure there are more.
No wonder they can afford lovely new vans, I'm seeing them everywhere, the clue is in the name of the company/ group !