Rouge landlords are making tenants’ lives a misery by ignoring mould, leaking roofs and broken boilers, an East Marsh councillor has claimed.
Councillor Nicola Aisthorpe wants to see tougher scrutiny of who can rent properties so that residents aren’t driven away. She’s warned that the poor condition of properties is blighting parts of Grimsby with more fly-tipping.
The Liberal Democrat councillor has called for the council to introduce selective licensing in the ward, which would require landlords to get permission first. Plans for this were paused during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We constantly have people telling us that their landlord doesn’t care about mould, damp, leaking roofs, broken boilers or the lack of insulation. This quite simply drives people away,” Councillor Aisthorpe said.
“In parts of the ward like Rutland Street, Castle Street and Harold Street, more than 70% of the properties are rented. Many of the properties are in poor condition.
“It’s hard for people to have pride in the area when they’re facing these problems. The fact that so many people are moving in and out frequently also leads to a lot of fly-tipping in the alleys.
“People moving out might not care about their rubbish because they’ve had such a bad experience, and rogue landlords will just dump waste to make room for the next tenants.
“Not all landlords are causing problems – there are very good ones in the area. They are in the minority though.
“We really need selective licensing to protect tenants and stop them from being exploited. It would give the council greater enforcement powers to use against bad landlords, and save time and money.
“Until then, they will continue to be a blight on the community.”
North East Lincolnshire Council explored selective licensing in the East and West Marsh in a public consultation in 2020. This was postponed because of the economic upheaval caused by the pandemic.
A full council meeting earlier this year was told that the officers were currently looking into how a licensing scheme could be delivered. Councillor Callum Procter, the portfolio holder for housing, said he was keen to look at how it could be rolled out across the whole borough.