The councillor responsible for housing in Brent has welcomed a new law which requires all landlords across five wards to apply for a licence.

Cllr Eleanor Southwood said the move represents a “big step in the right direction” as Brent Council seeks to improve the borough’s private renting sector.

From June 1, all landlords and managing agents who rent out properties in Dudden Hill, Kensal Green, Kilburn, Mapesbury and Queen’s Park must be licensed.

It comes as local authorities look to sure up the housing market and clamp down on irresponsible landlords.

Cllr Southwood said: “This is good news for everyone who rents their home. Obviously, most landlords provide a decent service. Unfortunately, too many think they can take advantage of their tenants.

“Selective licensing is a big step in the right direction towards a properly regulated rental market – something that's long overdue across the capital.”

The council estimated that around 5,000 properties in the five wards will now need a selective licence. The fee is £540, and the licence is valid for up to five years.

From October 1 there will also be national changes to the licensing scheme for houses in multiple occupation (HMOs).

On this date, any property that is rented out to five or more people who are unrelated will require a mandatory licence.