Letting agents in London will need to check more closely whether a property comes within the capital’s myriad property licensing schemes after its mayor Sadiq Khan launched a checking tool for tenants.
Renters who suspect their home should be licensed but is not, and who might be in line for back-rent via a Rent Repayment Order, can now use Khan’s new Property Licence Checker.
After filling in a few basic details about the property, it tells them if their landlord or property is licensed and offers help to make rent repayment orders with their local council’s help.
“My new property licensing checker is a key part of my work to redress the imbalance of power that currently exists in the London private rented sector,” says Khan.
“London’s renters deserve to live in safe, secure, comfortable accommodation, whilst councils need the tools to deal with rogue operators.”
Councillor Darren Rodwell (pictured), London Councils’ executive member for housing & planning, adds: “This will be an extremely useful ‘check and challenge’ tool to empower tenants and support boroughs in our crackdown on rogue landlords. In the face of weak regulation set at a national level, London boroughs are pleased to be working with the GLA to push up standards in the capital’s private rented sector.”
But Isobel Thomson (pictured), Chief Executive of Safeagent, warns: “The success of this initiative depends on the information being accurate and all parties being correctly advised of their legal responsibilities.
“We would encourage everyone to cross reference the information with each Borough’s website to ensure compliance.”