In another example that Portsmouth's housing standard documentation is not fit for purpose, one of our members this month pointed out that the way they are currently written, no 3 storey HMO's are allowed in the city except those with kitchens on the middle floor...
For a couple of years, the required standards were not accessible through the PCC website while they were being updated, so it is good news that they are now back. See them here: https://www.portsmouth.gov.uk/ext/documents-external/standards-for-hmo-v2.0-2019.pdf
However, the wording of some sections could be better - or maybe it is right and they don't want 3-storey HMO's?
According to the member who highlighted this, "On page 6 it states ..
"The proximity to bedrooms - no bedroom should be more than 1 storey from a kitchen/dining area."
This seems to be totally impossible for any typical 3 storey HMO with ground floor communal facilities (regardless how big).
Previous versions of the document did not have this restriction, they simply stated that kitchen and dining facilities should not be more than 1 floor apart (which is more sensible).
Please would the Council state their intention regarding this statement or explain if I have somehow miss-interpreted this requirement?"
Given the number of other issues this month, we have no taken this specific one up with PCC on this members behalf - but it is a timely reminder that more care needs to be taken in the drafting of these documents and some form of consultation needs to be included - publishing badly written documents retrospectively helps no one.
Written & oral information and advice from the Portsmouth & District Private Landlord's Association is given in good faith, but no responsibility whatsoever is accepted by the Association or it's officers for the accuracy of it's information & advice nor shall the Association be held responsible for the consequences of reliance upon such information.