Published 3rd February 2021
Regulation and enforcement of the PRS in 2021 is not showing any signs of slowing down. With more licensing schemes cropping up all over the UK and a recent consultation on tightening the energy efficiency standards of rental properties, landlords today must ensure they’re prepared for what’s to come further down the line. Over the past month we’ve seen some huge fines issued to both rogue landlords and even property managers. In this article we’ve selected the biggest stories we’ve come across so far.
At Kamma, we understand that property licensing is complex, inconsistent and ever changing. Our technology and software cuts through that complexity to keep you on top of all the changes with clear and accurate advice. We analyse and sort data to help agents, landlords and surveyors understand the impact of Property Licensing and Planning Permission on their properties and assets. By leveraging technology and data, we want to ensure that no tenant has to live in substandard or unsafe accommodation again.
Mr Zamir was prosecuted and handed a record fine from Reading council, following investigations from the local authority’s housing team. The £60k fine is a record high for the council who found the property to be unsafe for its tenants.
Having claimed his two self-contained flats were occupied by single households respectively; the council later discovered that each flat was in multiple occupation.
Several safety failures were uncovered by the housing team, including a main entrance which was insecure and in poor repair and an escape route from the home not being fire resistant and in poor repair.
The Northampton based landlord was first contacted by council officers back in March 2015 requesting that he obtain the appropriate HMO licence.
After five further unactioned requests to apply for the licence, council officials opted to investigate the property under warrant in June 2019 and found multiple breaches of HMO rules.
There were several significant hazards found in the property, including “missing handrails and banisters on staircases, a partially collapsed and waterlogged ceiling, a faulty fire alarm and fire door and exposed electrical wires”.
A wide variety of other issues were discovered, causing the landlords civil penalties rack up to an eye-watering £50,500, which he was given 28 days to pay. The council are also working with the tenants to claim back rent.
Despite having obtained the correct licence for the property, officers from Reigate and Banstead Borough Council successfully took action against the Horley-based private property management company for breaching the fire safety and overcrowding terms of its licence for a two-storey property located in Redhill.
The amount of the fine increased as a result of it being discovered that the company involved attempted to conceal its offending. The fines were issued by the local authority as an alternative to prosecution.
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