Student HMO out of Family Home1

A family home on a quiet estate is to be converted into a seven-bed House in Multiple Occupation and rented out to Warwick university students.

House on 10 Brill Close in Cannon Park will be converted into a house in multiple occupation (HMO) and will be rented out to Warwick university students.

This has sparked concerns over the loss of family homes at a time of increasing housing need both in Coventry and nationally.

Agent Simon Grove, on behalf of the applicant, said: “This is a large family home and this one had circa six people in the family. They are looking at options to sell it and the only people interested in the sale were people for an HMO relative to Warwick University.”

But councilor Tim Sawdon, arguing against the plans, referenced an “almost identical” application in the area which was rejected in November, adding it would be “totally perverse” to agree to this one now.

At the last application, he said the estate was “being turned into a student village”.

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The policies state a 7-bed HMO would require 6 parking spaces, but in this application, there were only three provided.

“If that’s the rule, you must stick to it,” Cllr Sawdon argued.

“If you are going to start saying ‘oh what’s one more going to be’, it really does fly in the face of the policies being set.

“It is over-development of the site. Brill Close is a narrow road and has a hammerhead junction just around the corner.”

However planning officers and highways did not object as they said it was in a “highly sustainable location” within walking distance to the university.

The agent also replied to claims it was over-development, stating the only change is the conversion of the garage, with the footprint not increasing.

Plans were approved six in favour and two against, despite Cllr Catherine Miks’ concerns over the loss of family homes.

She said: “We all welcome the university but these are large houses where developers are basically going in and keeping profits.

“I hope we are looking into the fact we are losing large family homes we need in this city.”

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