HMO planning guidance wins approval

HMO planning guidance wins approval

HMO planning guidance wins approval

First published in News by

PLANS restricting the amount of Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMOs) in Worcester have been given the thumbs-up.

At a meeting of Worcester City Council’s planning committee on Thursday, August 21 members discussed a proposed scheme which will restrict any new HMOs from being set up in an area where more than 10 per cent of properties within a 100 metre radius are already occupied by multiple people.

The HMO Supplementary Planning Document (SPD) is being introduced following the implementation of the council’s Article Four Direction – which requires landlords wishing to change a house from a residential dwelling to a HMO to submit a planning application – at the start of July.

Cllr Andrew Roberts said the thrust behind the scheme was to protect the living conditions of people in the city.

“The wellbeing of local people will always be most important,” he said.

HMOS are defined as properties occupied by between three and six unrelated people sharing basic amenities such as a kitchen or a bathroom and are commonly used by students, temporary workers and those on low incomes.

Although member for St Clement’s – which has the greatest concentration of HMOs in the city at 9.87 per cent – Cllr Chris Mitchell suggested the scope of the SPD should be expanded to prevent more than 10 per cent in one electoral ward rather than a 100 metre radius, members did not agree to support the idea.

But the council’s economic development and planning policy manager David Blake assured members the impact of the scheme would be monitored on a regular basis.

“If there is an effect that is unforeseen or harmful we will be able to review the process,” he said.

The other areas of Worcester with the greatest amounts of HMOs include St John’s at 9.01 per cent, the Arboretum at 4.41 per cent and Cathedral ward at 3.3 per cent.

The SPD will also only allow a change of use to a HMO where it will not result in more than two next door to each other and there is adequate provision for off-street parking.

However, an application may be permitted within areas of very high HMO concentration where it can be proven there is no demand for regular housing.

Members voted unanimously to support the plans and the document will now be voted on at the next meeting of the council’s cabinet on Tuesday, September 16.

Comments (2)

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10:39am Fri 22 Aug 14

Jabbadad says...

Well it's no suprise that the most student or HMO properties are in St Johns since suprise suprise is the UNIVERSITY, and when knowing that there could well be 3,000 additional students arriving those counillors who rushed to press to wallow in the UNIVERSITY status granted are now, because of a lack of planning by both them (COUNCILLORS) and the UNIVERSITY who don't seem to bother what disruption they cause whether over accomadatio or Parking problems, fogetting their past blinkered Ostrich type support.
Well we are here now and the proposed plans are as if drawn up by the un-educated.
Other universities when operating split campus sites as Worcester now, also provide transport between accomadation and the Universities. So without transport is it any suprise that students (who are our future) would try to get accomadation close to the University, ST JOHNS???
I ask you.
Well it's no suprise that the most student or HMO properties are in St Johns since suprise suprise is the UNIVERSITY, and when knowing that there could well be 3,000 additional students arriving those counillors who rushed to press to wallow in the UNIVERSITY status granted are now, because of a lack of planning by both them (COUNCILLORS) and the UNIVERSITY who don't seem to bother what disruption they cause whether over accomadatio or Parking problems, fogetting their past blinkered Ostrich type support. Well we are here now and the proposed plans are as if drawn up by the un-educated. Other universities when operating split campus sites as Worcester now, also provide transport between accomadation and the Universities. So without transport is it any suprise that students (who are our future) would try to get accomadation close to the University, ST JOHNS??? I ask you. Jabbadad
  • Score: 3

1:35pm Mon 25 Aug 14

Roger5 says...

The University itself is responsible for the highest concentrations of students' accommodation, but guess what, they always get permission for providing crowded housing with no parking (for example the block in Samsome Walk, in the Arboretum area). I guess they would like to operate a cartel!

In Bath where a similar restriction has been imposed, rents have gone up, as when a property that has been let as an HMO is sold, it is not being replaced. How are high rents to encourage students to come to the town, bringing their spending-power with them, and boosting our economy? All mis-management by narrow minded administrators in local government. No vision, no strategy, no flipping idea! Don't these people understand that Worcester has to compete to develop economically? No wonder no land being made available for jobs is being developed! (As reported this week in WN).
The University itself is responsible for the highest concentrations of students' accommodation, but guess what, they always get permission for providing crowded housing with no parking (for example the block in Samsome Walk, in the Arboretum area). I guess they would like to operate a cartel! In Bath where a similar restriction has been imposed, rents have gone up, as when a property that has been let as an HMO is sold, it is not being replaced. How are high rents to encourage students to come to the town, bringing their spending-power with them, and boosting our economy? All mis-management by narrow minded administrators in local government. No vision, no strategy, no flipping idea! Don't these people understand that Worcester has to compete to develop economically? No wonder no land being made available for jobs is being developed! (As reported this week in WN). Roger5
  • Score: 0

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