A CLAMPDOWN has been launched on landlords who run illegal houses in multiple occupation.


Anyone who rents out a property occupied by three or more unrelated people needs an HMO license from the city council.

It requires properties to be of an acceptable standard and have various safety features in place.

These include lighting, ventilation, utilities, sanitation, heating, personal washing and food preparation space.

But some unscrupulous landlords are renting out properties without the appropriate license.

Council bosses have now decided to take tough action in a bid to stamp out the practice.

That will mean any landlord found to be running an HMO without a license will be banned from collecting rent from tenants.

And in future, licensing staff will be able to make spot checks on properties which do have a license to ensure they are being properly run.

Under the Housing (Scotland) Act, officers are allowed to enter living accommodation to ensure conditions imposed by the license are being adhered to.

If a property is deemed not fit for occupation or the license holder has breached a condition of the license a report will be sent to the council and the license could be revoked.

Previously premises were only inspected at the time when the HMO licence went forward for renewal,

The clampdown follows concerns about poorly managed licensed HMOs and anti-social behaviour.

In recent times, the HMO unit has been using landlord registration and council tax records to identify properties which they suspect are being used without a licence.

As a result, a total of 77 license applications were submitted during 2014/15 as a result of the work by council staff and 33 unlicensed properties were taken out of HMO use.

There are 3067 HMO licences in force in Glasgow and last year around 270 complaints were received about licensed and unlicensed properties about issues such as water leaking into neighbouring properties, noise and other forms of antisocial behaviour.

Since 2011, 72 landlords or agents have been referred to the Procurator Fiscal for HMO related offences

Councillor Chris Kelly, licensing and regulatory committee chairman, said: " It's only right that we take a tougher line on enforcement of licences for houses of multiple occupancy.

"Unfortunately there is a small minority of HMO licence holders who flout the rules.

"That is completely unsatisfactory for residents and neighbours and undermines faith in the overall system.

"So we are making it very clear to licence holders who fall short of an acceptable standard that we will intervene against them to the fullest extent possible.

"We have a range of powers at our disposal that allows the council to inspect licensed premises at any time and force them to undertake essential works.

"Powers are also available which prohibit rent from being collected by a landlord where the property is used as an HMO and they do not have a licence.

"Failure to comply with enforcement action will ultimately see landlords called before the licensing committee and potentially facing the ultimate sanction of having their licences revoked.

"We want to protect those landlords who uphold housing standards by targeting those who do not."