Certificate of Lawful Use for C4 HMO usage in article 4 area
Looking for some help/advice or if anyone has any experience with obtaining a Certificate of lawful use (CLU) for HMO propertys from the council planning departments, ideally in Leeds?
I am a small investor in Headingley, Leeds which has an article 4 directive restricting the proliferation of C4 HMO's (3 separate households and above) by requiring any landlord to apply for permission to convert the use of any C3 residential dwelling to C4 usage if they want to rent it out as an HMO and it has been a residential house at any point since 2012.
I am trying to sell one of my 6 bed student HMO's (C4) and in order to sell my property I need to get a CLU to prove that the C4 usage has the correct history of continuous use as C4 since before the directive came into force in 2012.
My issue is I only bought the property in 2016, so while when purchasing my solicitor did the standard checks from the seller and confirmed it had always been a C4 student house, in order to get the certificate I am being asked by the council to provide a weight of evidence to prove this from pre my purchase, which due to data protection is understandably hard to come by!
So my specific questions is, has anyone had any experience getting a CLU for c4 usage and got any tips? And does anyone have any suggestions for what evidence I may be able to obtain to prove beyond doubt that it was a student house for the last 7-8 years?
Currently I have done what I can to talk to the previous owner, council tax and electoral roll, but very open to more creative ideas!
Very open to all suggestions and questions and much appreciate the time taken.
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