Communities and Local Government CommitteeFurther written evidence submitted by the East Midlands Property Owners

A Small Addendum

My comments are not intended against the safety aspects of HMO’s, rather some of the provisions, such as room sizes and number of people permitted (which do not apply to owner occupied property for example), and where a newborn child can tip a property into HMO status, with a newborn considered to be a person on the premises, under the 2004 Act. My personal opinion is that the 2004 Act is very poorly written, and does not take account of the real world situation and the increasing demand for multiple occupation.

The matter is further aggravated by the insurance position, and insurance companies either refusing to insure DSS occupied properties, or putting on heavy increased premiums, at a time when income from such persons via benefits is falling and is becoming less and less certain. There is an urgent need for a Government funded insurance scheme to cover some properties, something on the lines of pooling together of premiums on a non profit basis.

The increasing imposition of discretionary HMO licensing as things stand, with insurance and other problems, seems to me to be a recipe for disaster, which will not improve matters and if anything create more homelessness.

January 2013

Prepared 16th July 2013