Selective licensing

We currently operate two Selective licensing schemes in Doncaster. One in Hexthorpe and one in a designated area of Edlington. If you rent out a property that is tenanted in those areas, you are likely to require a licence. 

Do I require a licence?

If you live in a property that meets the criteria of a HMO, you will need to apply for a houses in multiple occupation licence.

If you don't, please click the relevant row below.

Hexthorpe

All privately rented properties in Hexthorpe need a licence during the scheme. The Hexthorpe scheme runs from 1st July 2015 – 30th June 2020.

Edlington

All privately rented properties in the designated selective licensed area require a licence during the scheme. 

The boundary of the designated selective licensed area is defined by:

  • Staveley Street to the north
  • Auburn Road and the allotment gardens to the west
  • Carr Road to the south
  • along Broomhouse Lane to North Street/Square to the east

See below for a map of the area.

The Edlington scheme came into force on 7th February 2018 and will run for 5 years, until 6th February 2023. 

  A map of the designated selective licensed area in Edlington.

Please read the other questions and answers section if you're:

  • a managing agent for a landlord
  • an agent/landlord intending to seek repossession to sell the property

For a list of exemptions, please read the following section.

Who is exempt?

  • Any HMO which is already licensed under a mandatory HMO licence requirement. 
  • Properties owned by a Registered Social Landlord (e.g. St Leger or other RSL) 
  • The property has been prohibited under Section 20 of the Housing Act and this action has not been suspended. 
  • It is subject to a management order or empty dwelling management order under part 4 of the Housing Act 2004 (currently none in Hexthorpe or Edlington) 
  • Property is managed or controlled by Doncaster Council, a Registered Social Landlord, South Yorkshire Police, South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue or a Health Service Body. 
  • Properties occupied on business tenancies (occupied for the purpose of a business carried out by the occupier). Example shop managers flat above the shop. 
  • Licensed Premises, any area occupied that is also covered by a Premises Licence for sale or supply of alcohol. (Licensing Act 2003, s.14) 
  • The term of the tenancy is more than 21 years. 
  • Houses let to family members (family member is defined as married to each other or living in equivalent relationship, parent, grandparent, child, grandchild, brother, sister, uncle, aunt, nephew, niece or cousin. A relationship of the half blood or a step child is to be treated the same). 
  • If lodgers live with you and share your accommodation you are exempt from licensing. We may request evidence the property is the main or only residence of the owner before this exemption is confirmed.

For full details of exemptions please refer to The Selective Licensing of Houses (Specified Exemptions)( England ) Order 2006.

What will the licensing fee cost?

Both schemes have been implemented as co-regulation selective licensing schemes. This means applicants can:

  • apply direct to the council and pay an upfront, one off licensing fee, to cover the duration of the scheme
  • sign up to a membership with Home Safe, where they pay an initial licence fee and then a monthly membership fee and annual inspection fee

For the full costs, click the relevant row below. 

Hexthorpe fees are:

  • Applications to the Council £245

or

  • Applications through Home Safe £75 plus registration fee £25+VAT plus monthly direct debits to Home Safe of £4.50+VAT
    First year inspection £50+VAT (obligatory for all members)
    Inspection training course £50+VAT (if you want inspect and self-certify your property in year 2-5 rather than paying £50 per annual inspection).

Landlords who have multiple properties within Hexthorpe must pay full price for the first application, however, will be eligible for a £15 discount for each application thereafter.

Edlington fees are:

  • Applications to the Council £515

or

  • Applications through Home Safe £80 plus registration fee £25+VAT plus monthly direct debits to Home Safe of £4.50+VAT
    First year inspection £50+VAT (obligatory for all members)
    Inspection training course £50+VAT (if you want inspect and self-certify your property in year 2-5 rather than paying £50 per annual inspection).

Landlords who have multiple properties within Edlington must pay full price for the first application, however, will be eligible for a £15 discount for each application thereafter.

Apply for a licence

When should I apply?

If you are a landlord/managing agents/ business, applications must be submitted immediately as the schemes are already in operation. If the property is currently empty and due to be occupied, an application is required as soon as occupied however, we would encourage you to apply prior to the tenants moving in.

What will I need for the application process?

Applications need to include: 

  • the completed application form including disclosure of convictions, 
  • the relevant fee, 
  • a completed property declaration form if the property is in the Hexthorpe scheme

During the first verification visit a copy of the Gas Safe Certificate and a recent inspection of the electrical installation (less than 5 yrs old) will also be requested. In addition for HMOs we will ask to see a Fire Detection & Alarm System Certificate.

How can I apply?

Please select the relevant option below depending on which co-regulation scheme you have decided to use (see Licence fee cost section above for details of each scheme).

For applications made directly to the Council, we encourage digital online application through the website GOV.UK.

For applications made through the Home Safe route, www.thehomesafescheme.org.uk Home Safe will forward an application to the Council on your behalf in a different format.

What happens if a landlord does not apply for a licence?

It is a criminal offence to operate without a licence. On conviction a landlord can be given an unlimited fine.

How can I find out if a landlord has a current licence?

Use our search to find out if a property in Hexthorpe or Edlington has been granted a Landlord licence.

Other questions and answers

 What are the conditions of the licence?

Conditions of the licence include:

  • The need for landlords or their managing agents to pass a fit and proper persons test. This is to make sure the applicant is suitable to hold the licence. We will consider any history of serious poor management or outstanding criminal charges that are inconsistent with operating as a compliant landlord.
  • The need to obtain tenant references
  • Confirming tenancy agreements are in place and provided to tenants
  • The effective management of anti-social behaviour
  • Ensure the property is not overcrowded
  • Maintenance of the external appearance of the property, including gardens and rear boundary walls
  • Adequate security of the property
  • * For Homesafe members only - there is an additional condition stating that your licence will no longer be valid should your membership with Homesafe lapse (for whatever reason). In effect this means you must either be a Homesafe member with a licence through them or get a licence directly from the Council. 
Hexthorpe Licence conditions
Download (229KB - PDF)
Edlington Licence conditions
Download (391KB - PDF)

Conditions of the licence state that landlords need to provide some information in different languages. How will they do that?

The licensing scheme will request landlords to gain a signed copy of a notice of how to dispose of waste and a notice in respect to acceptable behaviour from all their tenants. These notices are available in a pre-agreed format and can be requested by emailing SelectiveLicensing@doncaster.gov.uk or calling 01302 737573.

 Are licences transferable?

No, a licence is personal to the licence holder and specific to the property. If a property changes hands then a new licence will need to be applied for. If the licence has been obtained via the council, no refund is payable for the remaining period of the licence.

 I am a managing agent for a landlord - do I (the agent) have to apply for the licence?

You may need to apply for a license if you're a managing agent for a landlord, and you have a contract where you (the agent):

  • undertake day to day running of the property(s)
  • collect the rent(s)
  • deal with emergencies
  • advise the landlord of any further property maintenance

The law considers the person having control of the property to be the most appropriate person to be the licence holder. Therefore, if the owner of the property is an absentee landlord, and you have control of the property, you as the managing agent may be deemed as the most appropriate person to hold the licence. However, if the owner requires you to obtain permission to carry out any maintenance or repairs, letting or evicting of tenants it is possible the owner would be the person responsible and therefore required to be the selective licence holder. If you are unsure who should apply as the licence holder, please contact the licensing team using the details on this page.

 I am an agent/landlord intending to seek repossession to sell the property, do I apply for the licence or a temporary exemption? 

You can apply for a temporary exemption however you have to demonstrate the steps that you are taking to acquire possession and to sell on the property. Each application for exemption will be dealt with on a case by case basis and you will have to confirm this in writing to the department for the temporary exemption to be considered. If agreed, the temporary exemption is only valid for 3 months. After which, if you need further time, you could apply for a second temporary exemption but the circumstances to give a second and final temporary exemption would have to be exceptional. 

 What do officers look for when completing property inspections?

When inspections are carried out officers will be checking compliance with the specific licensing conditions and also looking at the general condition of the property.

Generally if the licence is obtained through Doncaster Council, a Doncaster Council officer will carry out the inspection. If the licence is obtained via the Homes Safe Scheme, an officer from Home Safe will carry out the inspection. However, to ensure consistency Doncaster Council officers will carry out inspections of properties licensed through the Home Safe Scheme. This may result in multiple inspections in a year however disruption to the tenants is kept to a minimum.

 What are the benefits of the schemes?

There is clear evidence that certain types of ASB in Hexthorpe and Edlington are persistent, and the majority of these incidents are linked to occupiers living in the private rented sector. Selective Licensing is being introduced to:

  • Tackle the issue of anti-social behaviour
  • Deal with issues of low demand and area decline
  • Support inexperienced landlords
  • Engage with those landlords who's management arrangements are unsatisfactory

Selective licensing will make sure your landlord is managing and maintaining your home so that it is kept in good state of repair. They’ll also be expected to act in a responsible manner. This will include carrying out tenant vetting, issuing valid tenancy agreements and securing deposits in one of the government’s nominated schemes.

Selective Licensing is about improving tenancy management in the private rented sector for the greater good of the area and the wider community. It is anticipated this could improve the areas for everybody, landlords included.

It is hoped the scheme will reduce problems in the area, stabilise the private rented sector and make these more desirable places to live in the longer term.

 What do landlords get for their money?

The licensing fees go towards covering the cost to the council of administering the licence schemes, processing the fit and proper person checks, issuing the licences and the annual compliance checks and reporting. 

 I am a tenant do I need to do anything?

As a tenant you do not have to apply for a licence. However, your landlord will request that you agree, sign and adhere to a couple of documents that are required under the selective licensing scheme. These are the Anti-Social Behaviour Document and the Waste Management Document. These documents detail what is expected from you as a tenant in Hexthorpe and Edlington areas and are available in several languages on the web page. You will also be expected to facilitate access to officer in order to carry out annual inspections.  

If you believe your landlord is not maintaining your property or is treating you unfairly, please contact the Selective Licensing Team.

Contact details

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Last updated: 01 February 2019 15:25:26