Making the Housing Rules Work

(Republished, May 24, 2018) Most of the big noisy parties we experience in this area take place in so-called "mandatory" HMOs--Houses of Multiple Occupation with five or more people sharing that are spread over three storeys or more. The landlords of these houses, which are licensed for five-year terms, are under a legal duty to control their tenants so as to minimise nuisance and disturbance to neighbours. In practice, that doesn't seem to deliver the results we would like, so I've been looking at how the rules work and whether they could be improved. I found a few things that surprised me. One example: although the law governing HMOs (the Housing Act 2004) focuses overwhelmingly on landlor

Party Notices -- What to Do

Students often tell their neighbours in advance that they're planning to have a party, either by knocking on doors or putting notes through letterboxes. So why do some of these events come as such a shock to residents and end up causing so much distress? The answer seems to be that these two groups have completely different expectations and ideas about what's involved. No one likes to be a kill-joy, so residents may be reluctant to object outright; they might also assume (because to them it seems common sense) that some moderation will be shown. The students, conversely, may assume that unless they hear an emphatic objection, then no one is too bothered, and they're clear to go ahead. Then

■ Noise, Woodfield Road, 28/04/18

(17006) Two residents have complained about loud music played by students at a house in Woodfield Road, south side, in the early hours of Saturday, 28 April. The University of Bristol has since called the students to a disciplinary hearing. One of the residents, who was among those affected by the late-night parties at Hampton Road and Collingwood Road in early March (see blog archive), says he complained to the Woodfield Road students twice, at about 1-30am and again at 2-30am. The music was finally turned off at around 2-45am.

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