BANES hikes Mandatory licensing costs by £200 from 1 January!

Filed in Landlords by on 5th January, 2024 0 Comments

Hard on the heels of the announcement that it would not be renewing its Additional licensing scheme, BANES announced a £200 hike in the cost of the Mandatory licensing scheme. A licence will now cost £895 for the 5 year period.

While it has to be acknowledged that costs can rise, a 28% hike seems somewhat disproportionate.

The fees for licensing schemes are only supposed to cover the Council’s costs so it is difficult to see what costs can suddenly have increased part way through the financial year that runs from April 1 to March 31. The inference is clear – having lost an income stream by not renewing the Additional licensing scheme, the Council is trying to shift some of those costs onto the Mandatory scheme. Legally, I don’t think they can do that because the amount of staff time spent on the Mandatory scheme will be exactly the same as before.

BANES has been asked about this but so far, has not provided an answer. Landlords are urged to contact the Housing Standards team and while you are probing them about this, you can ask them what steps they have taken to reduce their costs, both in staff terms and office accommodation and other central costs given that the scope of their activities has reduced.

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