Letting agents and landlords will have to win planning consent to erect To Let signs in student areas of Leicester from next month.
The city council has been granted powers by government to enforce stricter measures on agents wanting boards near to De Montfort University and the University of Leicester.
Last year the council prosecuted student lettings firm Unipad Ltd and another company, Dexterford Ltd, for the display of advertisements without advertisement consent.
Now under new rules coming into force on July 2 this year, penalties for non-compliance can be up to £2,500 for the offence in principle and then daily fines of £250 for a continuing offence.
“We know that people who live close to the universities are concerned about the almost permanent proliferation of ‘To Let’ boards on their streets. We have had a voluntary code of practice in place for a number of years but only a handful of landlords complied with this. Despite our best efforts, these advertising hoardings continue to create an eyesore in areas with a high concentration of rental properties" says a spokesperson for the council.
Letting Agent Today reported back in 2016 that the council submitted a request for Regulation 7 direction powers; the council was given the green light by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government in February this year.
Agents will be given formal notice to remove any boards ahead of the new system coming into effect.