Worcester landlords 'concerned by student homes limit'
Published by Sarah Ashcroft
Landlords in Worcester have declared their concern over plans to put in place a limit on the number of student homes available in the city.
Worcester City Council has launched plans to introduce tougher planning measures on the issue of turning properties into houses of multiple occupancy (HMOs), which are often lived in by students. The Worcester Standard told how some people in the city are worried the St John's district is already becoming a 'student ghetto'.
Councillor Richard Udall has already warned there is a chance the area could become a "bedsit village". As such, tougher guidelines could be introduced to curb the development of homes that are fit for those in full-time education.
However, the National Landlords Association (NLA) is unhappy with the prospect of planning controls and said any limit on student accommodation could force prices up and make it more difficult for students and low-income families to afford a place to live.
Don Robbie, the NLA's representative for Worcester, said: "By limiting supply many people will be pushed out of the city. While there are small areas of the city with significant levels of HMOs, Worcester derives great benefits from these.
"This is not the time to restrict affordable shared housing - the council has existing powers to deal with the problems associated with letting properties of this type."
There is due to be a meeting in the city on Wednesday (April 10th) to discuss the plans and landlords and letting agents are invited to attend to find out more about what lies in store. The NLA is pushing for more to be done to mitigate the impact of students, rather than banning the development of homes suitable for them.
Should the council's plans become a reality, it could be bad news for landlords in Worcester who wish to add to their property portfolios in the future in a bid to attract students - a typically profitable market - to their rental abodes.
Published on: April 4, 2013
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