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As you may (or may not) be aware, North Somerset Council recently approved the introduction of a selective licensing scheme to improve poor quality private rented housing in Weston-super-Mare town centre.
This saw the introduction of the Somerset Property Network; a group of landlords who decided to join forces to oppose the new licensing scheme – lead by Paul Routledge (veteran property investor) and Samantha Boyd (a PRS tenant) – who, over the last 2 weeks, managed to raise £12,000 to take the council to Judicial Review in order to overturn the decision, as they deemed the initial consultation to be perfunctory and unnecessary; ‘a money making exercise at the expense of good landlords and tenants.’
As of today, North Somerset Council have officially stated that they will not be progressing with the original licensing scheme as they are aware that the Somerset Property Network have challenged this decision, suggesting a number of alternatives.
Committed to driving up the standards of privately rented housing across North Somerset, once they have considered the additional feedback provided by landlords they will carry out a further review of the options available to improve the condition of privately rented homes.
Looking to the future, NSC are now arranging a meet with representatives of local landlords, including members of the Somerset Property Network and the Private Sector Housing Forum to explore the alternatives suggested.
NSC will be in touch in early September to arrange an initial meeting and, in addition, will engage with a cross-section of tenants to obtain a balanced view from the sector.
This truly demonstrates that North Somerset Council is listening and willing to work with responsible landlords to improve housing conditions for all tenants across the county.
Paul Routledge, CEO of TenantReferencingUK.com, said:
CONGRATULATIONS ARE IN ORDER!!!!!!!!!!!!! WHAT A RESULT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
We can now follow the Yorkshire Landlords’ flowers and chocolates with…….
Very well done to our very own Paul R and Samii B
Very well done all of you. I shared your Facebook post to Gainsborough Landlords and it appears to have sparked some interest at last. Now they know it is not a lost cause they might join me in fighting West Lindsey District Council’s selective licensing.
Great Result! – Congratulations.
Would love to see a case study of some kind? Let other landlord groups have some form of “How To” and what to watch out for with bad selective licensing.
All this thank”s to Paul”s magic Pound We”l get our heads together monday Just celebrate now but if any one wants to join the party They can come aboard for another MAGIC pound its a Great Party thanks to us all coming together Many Many thank”s Paul for driving all over the country to let us know there is an open door for help day & night I also have been macheted not very nice I think the greatest thing here is we are not in competion with eachother its a very MAGIC feeling we don”t even have to look over our sholder”s cos we are alll here to protect our Tenant”s & our investments Lets get these guys on from Gainsbourgh I like going there its so clean nice & very friiendly so lets welcome them cos I can see them from here.I car”nt sleep so am going to party alnight long I hav”nt managed to do that since I got my first buy to let, Brill Brill & more Brill
Can all LL please pay £1 towards a general fighting fund.
This to go towards a fighting fund for use by any LL group where a council attempts to introduce a barmy scheme.
LL across the country need financial clout to fight legal cases
Surely everyone of the 2.2 million private LL could afford £1 towards such a legal fighting to assist LL anywhere
I will be paying £1 only
I expect 2.2 million other LL to do the same!!
Thats a great Idea,Ive met alot of L lords over the week end who are over the moon about it one has over 90 properties in Doncaster s yorks which comes of which 76 our in the Licensing area he says he”s got about half the money the bank have said on to the rest plus he”s going to need between 6 to 10k upwards to bring them up to what the council want to do the work & they only give you six months to complete all the work on them all before they give you the license you have already paid for.So he wants to know where to pay his MAGIC POUND
Thats a great Idea,Ive met alot of L lords over the week end who are over the moon about it one has over 90 properties in Doncaster s yorks which comes of which 76 our in the Licensing area he says he”s got about half the money the bank have said on to the rest plus he”s going to need between 6 to 10k upwards to bring them up to what the council want to do the work &amp;amp;amp;amp; they only give you six months to complete all the work on them all before they give you the license you have already paid for.So he wants to know where to pay his MAGIC POUND
I believe there are some other forums trying to raise monies for action groups etc.
But I believe irrespective of who uses the fund there should be a legal fighting fund for ALL to use
So I would have NO objection if the RLA wanted to use some of the funds to fight a legal case
Or some Scottish LL wanting to fight his local council on some stupid regulation they may have introduced
As I would only be paying £1 per year; what do I care?
In 5 years there would be a fighting fund of 10 million quid; there being about 2.2 million private LL .operating as corporate or sole traders
It would be used as a sort of LL legal aid fund where recognised institutions etc could apply for funds to fight cases
S24 being one of the most obvious recent ones and of course still ongoing.
Obviously there would have to be someone managing the fund
Perhaps the RLA and NLA together could do this; though why they don’t just drop their differences and become the NRLA I’ll never know!!
So every year EVERY LL pays £1 toward a fighting fund
How hard can that be!!
Even if you cease being a LL will you really begrudge having paid say £30 over
We LL need to band together to defend eachother no matter where in the UK this is
We could do it; with a £1 contribution per year
I was going to suggest £1 per property per year; but that somewhat comes away from what you describe and I agree could be a ‘magic pound’!
NO LL can afford to be parochial cos as sure as eggs are eggs a nutty scheme up North will find its way down to the South West!!
So if we get our £1 in who is going to mess with us!!??
With a 2 million fund the WBBS legal action could have been funded entirely by the National LL Legal Fund!
ONLY LL or their representative organisations big and small would be able to apply to the find.
There would have to be some sort of legal oversight of such a fund by a QC so that relevant cases are fought.
But even the most disengaged LL in the UK; surely every year he could afford £1 and have access to what would be the BIGGEST Legal Fund of any organisation
Plus getting £1 from LL would have caused them to become known so that they could qualify to use the funds.
The vast majority of LL wouldn’t have any issue with that PROVIDING the database was PRIVATE and would NEVER be divulged to GOVT or the Security Services
So who is going to set up a Legal fighting fund with contributions accepted only from LL for £1!!??
In fact the fund should have articles of administration which state that no more than £1 maybe paid to the Legal fund per year per LL!!
I’m sure the ‘magic pound’ would achieve much social media comment and is something that I believe most LL would be willing to pay into.
Having 2.2 million LL paying £1 is what they call a force multiplier.
It would certainly make councils and Govt think again with their supposed unlimited legal funds.
They have to be responsible with taxpayer’s money; not so a private fund.
We could fight ANY legal action we so chose
Let’s face it every year there would be another replenishing 2 million quid in the pot!!
Perhaps EVERY LL that signed up to pay their £1.00 to a National LL Legal Fund would automatically be signed up for LRS; which would enable them to use LRS services if they wished!?
Yes thats what makes it the MAGIC POUND it opens doors that other wise can”t be opened .
Yes thats what makes it the MAGIC POUND it opens doors that that can”t be opened
Please tune into BBC Radio Bristol at 7:30am tomorrow morning.
So please spread the word far and wide!
Listen live here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/radiobristol
Please find this mornings BBC Bristol interview with Paul R here:
http://bbc.in/2bsexlj (1 hour, 6 minutes, 28 seconds in)
Just listened to your interview Paul, where can I get this home made ‘Russian’ Vodka?
Its been a very good weekend Thank”s Paul R for making us feel very proud to be part of it all great speech on the radio, Oxfordshire council have had there bugget cut by 50m the cry gets bigger Kind regards
Just heard back from Arden Chambers, barristers in London who won a past Selective Licensing Judicial Review, where on the evidence that we supplied they were prepared to take the case on !!
Meeting went very well yesterday, and we’ve now set up the company: North Somerset Landlord Accreditation Scheme Limited.
So far no-one has asked for their money back; requesting that their donation be turned into NSLAS shares.
So if you would like your donation to be converted into shares please let us know and feel free to donate more to access more shares.
Deadline for shares is next Friday (2nd September). Those of you who have requested share conversion will receive certificates in due course and those we haven’t heard from will automatically be converted into shares, unless we hear from you beforehand.
Lots still going on, so please WATCH THIS SPACE for more updates.
Hi all – good news!… As I’m sure you’re aware I’m very busy and although I love to be involved and am happy to use all the resources of my company (and great staff) to help everybody I simply would not have had the time to be able to put together, control and run the Accreditation. Therefore I had to think hard about who I thought would be best for the job, so I asked Sam Jackson; ex-vice chair of the NSC Landlord Forum and who
I know is an excellent business person – so would be a fantastic choice IF I could get her..!! So I offered her the position of Director in Charge of Operations, to control and develop the new Accreditation Scheme, whilst being supported by myself
our staff and our resources and funded by our wonderful group of Networkers who have left their money in the pot as shares.
Any queries, please call me on 0800 9994 994.
I think perhaps the National LL Accreditation Association
NSC is too parochial
LRS is UK wide.
I would like my magic pound contribution to go towards any LL or organisation that wishes to fight a case on behalf of themselves and potentially ALL other LL.
If I have a share! I want it gifted back to to NLAA!
The NSC has led the fight back
Now onto bigger and very important campaigns like S24 which is struggling to achieve the funds required for the ongoing JR.
All LL have to do is pay £1
If every LL did this there would be enough to fight every single licensing scheme and the S24 JR and the cases against the Skipton and BoI over their alleged mortgage misspelling
2.2 million quid would go a long way to defending all LL from duff legislation!
Yes that sounds realy good plan,. why is there a closeing date to put the magic pound in or di I pick that up wrong?
This just goes to show how out of touch some of our councillors truly are.
Councillor Mike Bell obviously hasn’t read the consultation or the ‘data’ behind it – furthermore, he posted on his facebook page that he was meeting with council officers YESTERDAY to find out why the licensing scheme had been abandoned; therefore made a quote to the Mercury (last week) on something he had no idea about until yesterday?!
IT IS A FACT THAT: the Freedom of Information Request returned from NSC, on the 750 complaints NSC based the Selective Licensing Scheme on, proves that the data they were using was perfunctory and misleading;
– In 2014 there were actually only 101 complaints within the proposed selective licensing area.
– Only 5 of these received notices of improvement.
– All five landlords complied with the work that needed to be completed, therefore no further action was taken.
To claim that our landlord group has ‘bullied’ the council into abandoning the scheme is utterly preposterous. No one has ever challenged the council like this before…and why? Because the majority of North Somerset citizens feel BULLIED BY THE COUNCIL.
Perhaps Councillor Bell will put his hand in his pocket and pay the £100,000 court costs that NSC will incur, via local rate payers money, if we’re forced to go to judicial review?…
Councillor Bells comments are embarrassingly churlish and actually bring to the forefront why landlords and the council have always had problems in communicating with one another. The likes of Councillor Mike Bell do nothing to the democratic process for working together for a better future, it is this mentality that they feel they are superior to us all which is totally detrimental to the success of this town getting a better future.
Landlords have not bullied the council we have asked to show them a better way that will not be detrimental to good landlord and good tenants and that is what they have offered us and I suggest that Mr Bell take a hard look at what we are all trying to achieve by debate rather than him throwing his toys out the cot because he has not got his own way based on a perfunctory consultation and spurious figures.
What a shame that we’ve come this far and then one councillor has chosen already to start slinging mud, and so much work has gone in by so many to find a better way. Therefore Councillor Bell may think about his outburst in the Mercury and why we are where we are and then reflect that the way forward may be to work together. I do not suggest that Councillor Bell is one, as I have never met him, however even the most bigoted fools understands that you catch more flies with honey than you do with vinegar.
I invite Councillor Mike Bell to meet me at the office to explain the case thoroughly and then maybe he won’t have such a sheltered view.
The simple fact is, we haven’t bullied anyone! What Paul and Samii have done is give us a voice, a voice we’ve never had before.
WE as landlords are constantly bullied by the council, Shelter, action groups, the media, EVERYBODY. This shows working together is the best way and NSC have unbelievably opened their eyes and ears and given us a chance to try and prove to them that there IS a better way forward.
What a shame the likes of Mr Bell have kept both his eyes and his ears closed… maybe this will be a reflection on his future
…Mr Bell, start listening and work with us NOT against us.
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