Council plans to curb HMO shared houses

AFS Team·12 December 2012·3 min read
Council plans to curb HMO shared houses
Landlords will need planning permission to switch family homes in to shared houses in multiple occupation (HMO) in Haringey, North London, as the council starts the process to clamp down on private renting. Councillors want to introduce article 4 planning constraints from November 2013. The direction will take away permitted development rights from landlords wanting to convert a family home to an HMO. The council is concerned that many local landlords are moving extra tenants in to letting properties and want to control the number of HMOs following complaints of bad behaviour and poor upkeep. Moving in more tenants in to a neighbourhood also upsets public services – for instance school pupil numbers can fall, while demand for rubbish collection and parking rises. Councillor Nilgun Canver, Haringey’s cabinet member for the environment, said: "We have wanted this for some time. Residents have told us about problems relating to HMOs on certain streets and this planning tool will help us identify which properties are suitable for conversion and, if given planning permission, we can ensure that their tenants get to live in properties that conform to health and safety guidelines. "Problems with fly-tipping and uncontrolled rubbish disposal often stem from tenants in HMOs not being guided by landlords to dispose of goods in the correct manner. I sincerely hope this Article 4 will help us regenerate those streets which have been most affected by these conversions." The planning controls will apply to several neighbourhoods: • Seven Sisters • Tottenham Green • Tottenham Hale • West Green • Bruce Grove • White Hart Lane • Northumberland Park • Noel Park • Woodside • Bounds Green • Harringay • St Ann’s Landlords can comment on the move by emailing [email protected] by 5pm on January 11, 2013. View a copy of the direction, including a map of neighbourhoods affected, at council’s Article 4 Direction page. About 40 councils have imposed or are planning to bring in article 4 directions, mainly to curb the spread of shared student houses in university cities.