Landlords are being warned about overcrowding their properties with plans for new licensing regulations being discussed in parts of Peterborough.
New licences for landlords could be introduced in a bid to improve conditions after photographs revealed shocking conditions in some rented homes.
Some pictures taken in the Millfield area of Peterborough included bedrooms filled with litter, kitchens with rotting food and filthy bathrooms.
Council officers say the problem is due to landlords overcrowding homes with tenants.
Peterborough City Council has now agreed a 10 week consultation over plans to introduce a selective licensing policy in parts of the city.
From April next year, landlords would have to pay £600 for a single property licence and £900 for a house of multiple occupancy (HMO).
The licences would last for five years and set out a number of conditions aimed at ensuring properties are up to standard.
Landlords could be fined £20,000 for failing to licence a property or £5,000 for failing to comply with conditions.
If the scheme is successful the council could introduce it across the city over the next 10 years with a special enforcement team being set up.
Adrian Chapman, the council’s executive director of operations, said: “We have seen a gradual decline in property values in the area and this has created a number of issues.
“Instead of being sold to families, properties have become over-crowded with tenants or sub-divided into flats and bedsits.
“There has been poor behaviour by some tenants as well as littering, parking and street drinking problems all caused by poorly managed residential accommodation across the patch.
“We want to support landlords, this is not just about enforcing and it will support tenants in the process.”
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