A LANDLORD is counting the cost of failing to abide by a licensing scheme that aims to improve standards of rental properties and tackle anti social behaviour.

Patrick Jackson, 37, of Carradale Close, Eaglescliffe, near Stockton, rented out a house in Raby Terrace, Chilton, County Durham, for two and a half years without the appropriate licence, despite repeated requests from Durham County Council.

The case was proven in Jackson's absence at Darlington Magistrates’ Court last Wednesday (August 13).

He was fined £400 and ordered to pay £330 costs and a £40 victim surcharge.

Chilton West is one of three areas in County Durham- the others being Dean Bank, in Ferryhill, and Wembley, at Easington Colliery- covered by a selective licensing scheme.

In those areas Durham County Council’s housing team works with landlords to help them raise standards, manage their properties and reduce anti-social behaviour.

Licences are only granted to landlords who demonstrate good management arrangements and pass a ‘fit and proper’ person test.