Private landlords will need to apply for a licence before they can rent out residential accommodation under new regulations which the Government is preparing to introduce, according to new reports out today.

They claim that the scheme is intended to root out abuses in the current rental market, and which will require each person letting a residential property to pay £50 and register with a national body. This is set to include anyone from developers to buy-to-letters to ‘accidental landlords’ who haven’t been able to sell their property and are renting in the meantime.

Once registered, landlords will need to comply with certain standards set by the Government, and could be struck off the register if they are seen not to be doing so; for now many landlords seem to think that the scheme needs to come with a considerable penalty for not registering – when a similar idea was introduced in Scotland very few landlords put their names on the list until more stringent legislation was brought in.

A green paper is expected to follow in coming weeks.

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