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July Vote For Landlords Licences

A fresh attempt to licence Jersey landlords will be debated next month.

The Environment Minister has published his plans for a scheme aimed improving the standard of rented homes.

Deputy Jonathan Renouf is bringing forward the regulations under the Public Health and Safety (Rented Dwellings) (Jersey) Law 2018 which sets minimum standards.

If politicians agree, a licence will be needed for each individual home rented out. 

Social housing providers - including Andium  - will require a licence 'to ensure a level playing field'.

The regulations won't apply to properties already registered as lodging houses or under the 1948 Tourism Law.

They will be no pre-inspection for landlords who apply before 31 March, but officers will be able to make random inspections.

"Using this (regulation), officers would be able to carry out proactive, targeted, risk-based inspections and have much easier access to details of the landlords for each property should it be necessary to contact them. There would also be random inspections, so that landlords will not know whether or not an inspection was the result of a complaint or just random selection."

The Minister describes the proposed licensing scheme has having a four-phase approach to enforcement: 'engage, explain, encourage and enforce'.

It says officers will 'work with relevant parties to ensure matters are dealt with in appropriate timescales, safeguarding the health and safety of tenants'.

Ultimately, there will be a mechanism for withdrawing a licence if the landlord fails to make improvements in the specified period but this would be 'last resort'.

 If a property has a licence application refused, not renewed or a licence is withdrawn, then it could not be rented out.

Renting out an unlicensed property would carry a fine of up to £10,000.

Previous attempts to licence landlords have been rejected by the last States Assembly

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