Landlords are facing stricter new conditions on how they operate their property as part of an effort to curb the impact that houses of multiple occupancy (HMO) can have on communities.
The conditions, which cover cleansing issues, repairs to common property and dealing with neighbour complaints, will come into effect following a review of HMO licensing by the council’s Licensing and Regulatory Committee. The review identified many concerns linked to the presence of HMOs in neighbourhoods across the city, particularly where there are high concentrations of this type of rental property.
High levels of refuse from HMOs being left in back courts and lanes is a common complaint with a surge in bulk waste being dumped at the end of the academic year also being raised as a recurring problem. Public consultation feedback also focused on difficulties with securing support from HMO landlords for repairs and maintenance to common parts of flatted property. How to deal with noise and other anti-social behaviour was also flagged as a source of on-going disputes.
While it was found there is no legal basis for a cap on the number of HMO licences issued within Glasgow, the review reiterated that the purpose of HMO licensing is to protect public safety. The review conclude that better management of HMOs was a practical way forward.
The new conditions for HMOs will cover:- general refuse; maintenance, insurance and repairs of common areas; bulk refuse; neighbouring residents and statutory notices. All of these conditions will be incorporated into a new code of conduct, which will apply to all HMO licence holders.
As part of the new conditions, a pilot project will be operated through the cleansing service provided by the council’s Neighbourhoods and Sustainability department. The pilot will involve landlords notifying the council in advance of flats being cleared of items at the beginning or end or the academic year to ensure bulk waste is reported for collection.
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