A group of letting agents, landlords and investors has failed in its bid to force a high profile council to reconsider its scheme for licensing private rental properties.
The Croydon Property Forum, a group of property professionals in the Croydon area, wanted to overturn the local council proposal to introduce compulsory licensing of landlords, who from October must now pay £750 per property every five years.
The court hearing to consider the request for a judicial review took place on August 4 but the decision was made public only yesterday.
Croydon Property Forum Ltd is a not for profit company that has been formed, in its own words, “to protect the interests of Croydon landlords and to protect the identities of its members who are challenging Croydon Council over its pending borough wide landlord licensing scheme which in our opinion is unjust to private landlords and tenants, and damaging to the interests of the London Borough of Croydon.”
However, following the decision to refuse judicial review, it has been described by Croydon council leader Tony Newman as “developers and landlords who have sought to exploit the vulnerable and attack Croydon’s Labour council.”
Under the scheme, any landlord without a licence faces a fine of up to £20,000. Those who breach the terms of their licence can be prosecuted and fined up to £5,000.
Landlords who register for a licence before the scheme's introduction on October 1 will be charged £350, while those who apply later will pay £750. Over 1,000 landlords have so far registered claims the council.
We have extensively reported on Enfield’s Labour-led council’s recent abandonment of a landlord licensing scheme following a successful judicial review by just one landlord.