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What is Selective Licensing?

What is Selective Licensing?

Selective licensing

A selective licensing scheme means that all private landlords in a designated area must have a licence to rent out a privately-rented property.

Selective licensing aims to improve the private rented market. It means property must be of a decent standard for a landlord to rent out.

Selective licensing also gives tenants confidence that houses and flats in a designated area will be healthy and safe to live in.

Selective licensing in Birmingham

Following our successful application to the Department of Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, we now have permission for a selective licensing scheme that will cover 25 of Birmingham's 69 wards.

The scheme will start on 5 June 2023.

Get ready for selective licensing

We expect that landlords will be able to apply for a licence from 22 May 2023. Each licence will cost £700 and last for five years.

If you have more than one property, you will need a licence for each property you own.

This is what you’ll need to apply for a selective licence:

  • name and contact details of anyone with an interest in the property – this could include the owner, freeholder or mortgage company
  • the date of birth of the person who will be the licence holder
  • a floor plan of the property with measurements of all the rooms and their position in the property – for example, ground floor left, first floor front right
  • the current electricity installation inspection and test certificate
  • the most recent gas safety certificate (if applicable)
  • a debit or credit card to pay the licence fee

Exemptions to the scheme

You won’t need a new selective licence if your property is:

  • licensed as an HMO
  • managed directly by an educational establishment
  • let by a registered social landlord such as a housing association

You can find a full list of exemptions on the UK legislation website.

Enforcing the new scheme

We will start to enforce the new scheme from 4 September 2023. This should give landlords in the affected areas sufficient time to apply for a licence.

Which wards are affected?

The new selective licencing scheme covers 25 of Birmingham’s 69 wards. They are:

Acocks Green

Alum Rock


Balsall Heath West


Bordesley Green

Bordesley and Highgate

Bournbrook and Selly Park


Gravelly Hill






North Edgbaston

Small Heath

Soho and Jewellery Quarter

South Yardley

Sparkbrook and Balsall Heath


Stockland Green

Tyseley and Hay Mills

Ward End

Yardley West and Stechford