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Views sought on Preston rules around multiple occupancy houses

Posted on - 14th March, 2020 - 7:00am | Author - | Posted in - Cadley, Deepdale, Fishwick, Frenchwood, Housing, Plungington, Preston City Centre, Preston News, University
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Pic: Tony Worrall

Residents and landlords are being asked their views on the current rules about houses of multiple occupancy (HMOs) in some areas of the city.

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Preston City Council is carrying out a review of the system which requires developers to obtain planning permission to convert properties into HMOs for up to six people.

Under the current regulations, houses in Ashton, Cadley, City Centre, Deepdale, Fishwick, Frenchwood and Plungington, can only be converted with permission from the council.

The restriction was imposed in February 2012, following a consultation in which the public raised concerns a high concentration of HMOs in these areas could lead to problems with parking, noise and amenities affecting the local community.

Deputy Leader and Cabinet member for planning and regulation, Councillor Peter Moss, said: “From time to time the council reviews policies to see if they are still relevant. Residents and other interested parties are then consulted to see if any changes are required.

“It may be that you think changes should be made or that you agree with the decision to keep restricting the number of houses in multiple occupation in certain areas across the city – and we need to know your views.

“I would strongly encourage the residents of Preston to engage with us and have their say on what could impact on local communities in the future.”

Read more: House prices up after a strong start to the year

In October 2010, the Government amended legislation to allow changes of use from single dwellings to houses in multiple occupation (HMOs) to take place without the need for planning permission.

Where further control over such conversions is considered necessary, local authorities can make directions that specify an area or areas in which permitted development rights are withdrawn and planning permission is then required for the proposed change of use.

In February 2012, the council confirmed an Article 4(1) Direction to seven areas of Preston following public consultation.

Now the council is seeking the views of residents and interested parties to decide whether the direction is still needed.

The consultation is currently on Preston City Council’s website until Monday 13 April 2020.

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