In some areas
local authorities are beginning to designate their district or part of their
district to be subject to licensing requirements. This appears to be more
prevalent in London Boroughs.
selective licensing applies, normally all houses within the private rented
sector for that area must be licensed, except where they are required to be
licensed as Houses in Multiple Occupation. This restriction can be imposed if
the area is or is likely to become an area of low demand for housing, and the
designation is likely to lead to improvements in the economic and social
conditions of the area.
serious implications for landlords who control a property required to be
licensed under a selective licensing scheme, not least because it is a criminal
offence to manage or control a property that is not licenced, if it is required
to be so.
licensing requirements can also restrict the termination of assured shorthold
tenancies. Under Section 21 of the Housing Act 1988, a landlord may serve
a notice (a Section 21 notice) on an assured shorthold tenant giving two
months’ minimum notice that the landlord intends to apply for possession.
Provided that the statutory requirements are met, a court must make a
possession order. No element of tenant default is required. A landlord
may not, however, give a Section 21 notice to a tenant of a property that is
required to be licensed under a selective licensing scheme, but that is not so
selective licensing scheme applies is therefore an important consideration for
landlords or those advising landlords when seeking possession of a property let
to an assured shorthold tenant.