Cardiff Council has written to landlords as well as letting and estate agents (such as CPS Homes) across Cardiff to inform them that HMO Licence Fees could increase in the New Year should a planned proposal be passed by the Cabinet.
In the document the council has revealed that the planned HMO Licence Fees increase is primarily down to the financial pressure being put on the council by the UK’s Government in Westminster. All non-protected services are required to deliver savings of more than 23% in 2014/2015. They are also expected to meet other saving challenges throughout the year.
Cardiff Council has revealed that it took into consideration the costs of delivering HMO licensing fees and charges by other authorities for delivering similar services when deciding to raise HMO Licence Fees. They have stated that the staffing costs of delivering HMO licencing in 2012/2013 was around twice as much as the income generated and that an increase in HMO Licence Fees is justified as the new prices still complied with the regulations. These regulations state that the costs of HMO Licensing must be reasonable and proportionate to the costs of procedures and formalities.
The proposed charges for 2014 are dependent on the type of licence applied for, the HMO Licensing for licensed properties in the mandatory scheme will increase from £700 to £770. Relicensing for the same structure will increase from £250 to £275. Relicensing to a new owner on revocation of an existing HMO Licence will increase from £200 to £400.
The Cathays additional licensing scheme will increase from £600 to £660 whereas a discounted Cathays additional scheme will increase from £425 to £560. Privately owned purpose built student flats will not see a HMO Licence Fee increase as the cost is per flat, it will remain at £100.
Cardiff Council has announced that it will undertake a review of the fee structure in 2014 in order to provide landlords and letting & estate agents with accurate costs for the years that follow. Cardiff Council announced that it is welcoming any and all comments on the fees in order to consider the future pricing structure.
The proposal will be submitted to Cabinet members in 3 weeks’ time so if anyone has any comments please submit them to Operational Manager Bethan Jones before the 8th November. The comments will be considered in any decisions made going forward.