Why are we considering selective licensing?
This consultation is now closed. We’ll publish the results and details of any scheme on the council website after evaluation of all comments and consultation feedback. If we introduce a scheme, we will give three months' notice before it comes into force.
We have introduced a revised Private Rented Sector Strategy (2020-2025) with a detailed implementation plan. This sets out the Council’s approach to the private rented sector over the next five years. The new Housing Strategy (2022-2032) reaffirms our commitment to improving the safety, quality and management of private rented sector homes.
There are approximately 90,000 private rented properties which is 38% of the total housing for the City of Manchester. We know that many PRS (Private Rented Sector) properties provide good quality accommodation, however there are areas of Manchester where PRS properties are not managed to a good standard.
We work with teams across Community Safety, Compliance and Enforcement regularly and work with landlords in the private rented sector in dealing with complaints about anti-social behaviour, poor property management, waste issues and proactively work to remove any concerns in these areas.
Despite this, we have not seen sustained improvements in areas unless additional interventions are introduced. Enforcement against individual properties alone will not improve standards to the level required across each area.
Manchester has previously had an accreditation scheme, and we have considered voluntary accreditation as part of our work in Manchester. However, our experience is that these schemes inevitably attract landlords who are already providing a good service to their tenants and do little to engage or improve the property conditions of those landlords who are not.
The Council has the power to introduce ‘selective licensing schemes’ in areas of Manchester. In these areas private landlords, or their managing agents, would need to have a licence for each house that they rent out. There are approximately 3,200 private rented properties in the current selective licensing schemes and the proposed selective licensing schemes would affect 1,100 private rented properties.
Selective licensing ensures that:
- The proposed licence holder is fit and proper to manage their properties.
- The licence holder complies with the conditions of the licence, leading to improvements in property management and reductions in anti-social behaviour
- Property inspections can be targeted
- Landlords provide necessary certification
- Unlicensed landlords can face an unlimited fine if prosecuted through the courts, or up to £30,000 if issued by the council.
To make sure that selective licensing helps to improve social or economic conditions, we want to introduce designated zones within the ward areas of Cheetham, Levenshulme, Longsight, Moss Side and Whalley Range, and Rusholme.
Find out more about the benefits of selective licensing and how areas are chosen