A leading London local authority is polling residents about whether to extend its ban on For Sale and To Let boards, claiming estate agents ‘make a healthy living without them’.
Camden council already enforces board bans in five conservation areas but it is now polling residents on whether to ban boards outright within its borders or apply the restrictions just to conservation areas and high streets.
“Estate agent boards continue to be one of the most common complaints made to Camden’s Planning Enforcement Team,” says Danny Beales, its Cabinet Member for Investing in Communities (left).
He claims that estate agents in the existing areas where the ban operates have been disregarding the regulations, and that agents’ boards are seen as “outdated eyesores, which merely add unnecessary clutter to our streets and take up valuable Council resources as we seek to secure their removal.”
If residents of Camden vote in favour of a complete or extended ban across the borough, additional powers will be applied for from the Secretary of State.
One local agent says he is unconcerned by the proposals. James Morton, a veteran director of Hampstead estate agency Dexters, told local media that boards were less relevant to house hunters than a decade ago.
Rightmove and Zoopla
“The ban came into place in Hampstead nearly 30 years ago, and in Belsize and elsewhere more recently, so we’re used to it,” he said.
“When the ban came in to Belsize around 15 years ago, we were worried, but then listing on the internet took off. With the amount we pay to Rightmove and Zoopla to be listed, lots of people house hunt on there.
“People don’t drive around looking for houses now, unlike before.”
The consultation is due to end on February 26th.