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Council may stop family homes being turned into HMOs

A local authority is considering introducing measures to prevent landlords turning family homes in one of its conservation areas into HMOs. 

Reading council in Berkshire says residents in one of its conservation areas have spoken of "the blighting effect" of numerous HMOs within the same street. Currently the conservation area status allows the council to protect the exteriors of the properties but now the authority wants powers to limit landlords' rights to develop by altering the uses of internal rooms, too.

If agreed, landlords will need planning consent before a family home becomes an HMO. 

A BBC report on the issue says that problems raised by residents include the loss and alteration of front walls to provide off-street parking and poor quality of the HMO conversions. 

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