So far around a third of landlords have signed upo to the city-wide scheme, the council says.
Council chiefs in Liverpool have been told they can press ahead with a licensing scheme for private landlords which stretches across the entire city.
It follows the admission last week by the local authority that it was “looking very closely” at the wording of legislation after a Government minister wrote to councils discouraging them from taking a “blanket” approach to the licensing schemes.
Today Assistant Mayor and cabinet member for housing, Cllr Ann O’Byrne, said: “We have had confirmation from the Government that Liverpool’s landlord licensing scheme is not affected by the recently announced changes because we have already made a decision to introduce it.
“Landlord licensing will drive up the quality of the 50,000 privately rented properties in the city and help tenants plagued by rogue landlords.”
So far 1,724 landlords in the city have registered – “roughly a third” – who between them are responsible for 8,258 properties, the council says.
Minister for housing and planning, Brandon Lewis MP, wrote to councils across the country last week saying the “blanket” approach taken by some local authorities has “major drawbacks”.
Mr Lewis had said new rules being introduced would mean local authorities will have to seek confirmation from the Secretary of State for any selective licensing scheme which would cover more than 20% of their geographical area or homes.
Instead, he said that such licensing schemes can play an important role when “strictly focused on discrete areas” with specific problems.
Liverpool’s mandatory initiative requires all landlords in the city to have a five year licence for each of their rented properties which the council says will help to improve standards in the sector.
However, it has faced some criticism from those who fear the extra costs will be pushed on to tenants, leading to rises in rents.
The licences, which last five years, cost landlords £400 for a first property and for each additional property it is £350, although for those in an approved landlord scheme the cost is £200 per property.
Liverpool is the first major city to introduce a city-wide licensing scheme, and up to 50,000 properties will be covered when it becomes a legal requirement from April.
Cllr O’Byrne said: “Landlords who rent out a private house need to start the application process now at www.liverpool.gov.uk/landlordlicensing before it comes into effect on 1st April.”