A plan to crackdown on rogue landlords to protect anti-social behaviour “problem” areas has been given the greenlight.

As private renting grows in the borough, Bexley council agreed to make landlords pay a license fee in in certain areas to improve living conditions for vulnerable tenants in the private sector.

The council hopes that the Rent It Right licensing scheme for landlords will drive up living conditions and allow landlords to be monitored by the council.

Stats have shown areas in the new scheme – Erith, Thamesmead North, Abbey Wood and Manor Road – are the some of the worst affected areas for nuisance behaviour.

Speaking at a cabinet meeting on April 10, councillor Brad Smith said: “The intention is to address the impact of poorly managed rented properties to improve housing conditions. It requires landlords to come forward and be licensed, rather than being reliant on complaints.

“This will help improve conditions for our most vulnerable residents by providing additional regulatory control of the sector in problem areas.”

Data shows a big increase in rented property in Bexley, with a 103 per cent increase in the number of private rented households between 2001-2011.

Under Rent It Right, it is proposed that landlords will pay a fee of up to £690 for their license – or £371 if they register early.

The scheme will mean landlords will be monitored and rogue landlords renting poorly managed properties would be targeted and prosecuted if they are not licensed.

Bexley Labour said it welcomed the introduction but wanted to see more done to cover the rest of the borough.

The group has since pledged to introduce a housing charter if elected in May that would help tenants in poor conditions in the rest of Bexley.

Labour leader Daniel Francis said: “Clearly there are other areas, in Belvedere and Thamesmead, and it will be interesting to see what happens in those areas and how we monitor what goes on there.

“We would be looking to see what we can do to work with all tenants across the borough to make sure they know their rights, but we support the measures in the paper tonight.”

The council said extending the initiative would require further schemes further to more research, but that government measures soon to be introduced will cover HMO’s in the rest of the borough.

The majority of landlords were against the plans, and made representations to the council before the meeting against the introduction of licensing.

Cllr Smith said: “Whilst the views of the landlords were taken into account, but when the views of the owners, tenants and businesses were given more weight there was more support for the scheme.

“It’s right residents and tenants are given priority, as they are often victims in these situations. Our priority should be to tackle nuisance and ASB in these areas, and crackdown on rogue landlords.”