Licensing & Registration for Landlords in Wales
Author: Caroline Walton
The Housing (Wales) Act 2014 was introduced with the aim of improving letting and management standards for people who rent private accommodation across Wales. From this Autumn all private landlords who have a rental property in Wales must register themselves and the addresses of their rental properties. Landlords who undertake letting and property management activities at a rental property in Wales must apply for a licence via Rent Smart Wales unless they instruct an agent to do the work on their behalf in which case the agent must be licensed.
In order to obtain a licence a person must be adequately trained, and also declare themselves ‘fit and proper’. Rent Smart Wales provide training directly or indirectly via a Rent Smart Wales approved training course delivered by an approved body.
It is also proposed that in Autumn 2016 a range of enforcement powers, such as fixed penalty notices and prosecutions, will be introduced and landlords and agents found to be ignoring their new obligations will have action taken against them by local authorities and the licensing authority. This gives people a year to comply with the legislation without fear of legal action.
The new legislation and Rent Smart Wales will replace the existing voluntary Landlord Accreditation Wales scheme, which has been operated by Cardiff Council on behalf of all local authorities in Wales.