Coventry residents urged to have their say on proposed Houses of Multiple Occupation (HMO) consultation - The Coventry Observer

Coventry residents urged to have their say on proposed Houses of Multiple Occupation (HMO) consultation

Coventry Editorial 26th Sep, 2022 Updated: 30th Sep, 2022   0

A GROUP set up to limit the number of Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMO) in Coventry has urged residents to have their say on the latest consultation on the issue.

Coventry Action for Neighbourhoods (CAN) is encouraging residents to provide feedback on a city council rule change which would prevent landlords and property developers from turning some residential homes into HMOs without full planning permission.

The ‘Article 4 direction’ would mean residential property conversions to HMOs in 11 wards – including Cheylesmore, Earlsdon, Foleshill, Sherbourne and Wainbody – would not need planning approval.

Some say the conversion of so many homes to HMOs had helped contribute to a shortage of suitable houses for families, making it harder for people to get on the property ladder and damaging communities.

Others, however, see them as addressing a different and urgent housin need.

The council’s supporting case document for Article 4 said HMOs were an important source of low-cost, private sector housing for people on low incomes, seasonal workers, students and those seeking temporary accommodation.

But it added some had been linked to poor standards of accommodation and loss of local character, along with increases in noise complaints, anti-social behaviour and crime, putting extra pressure on local services.

A spokesperson for CAN, which has representatives from 27 resident and tenant associations in the city, said the council’s decision was ‘great news’ adding it had wanted the Article 4 direction to be passed for the last eight years.

As part of the consultation, which runs until November 15, a number of two-hour workshops have been set up where people can speak to officers about the proposals.

Cabinet Member for Housing and Communities, Coun David Welsh, said: “We want to control the development of HMOs across Coventry, especially where there are already high concentrations.

“HMOs do serve a purpose but we also need good quality affordable homes for families, we believe this will help improve neighbourhoods.”

Visit to have your say on the proposals, or talk to planning officers during two-hour consultations at libraries throughout the city.

Planning officers will be at at Earlsdon Caranegie Community Library from 10.30am on Saturday, October 1, and Allesley Park Library on the same day from 2pm.

They will be at Aldermoor Library on October 4 from 11am and at Finham Library from 2.30pm on the same day.

Canley Library’s consultation workshop starts at 10am next Friday, October 7, while Central Library’s will be 1pm the next day (Saturday, October 8).

Planning officers will then be at Cheylesmore Library from 9.45am on October 11 and at Jubilee Crescent Library that afternoon from 2pm.

The final event will be at Coundon Library from 11am on October 14.

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