A landlord in Bristol has been fined thousands of pounds after tenants and neighbours complained about the awful state of toilets, sinks and showers in their buy-to-let properties.
MB Estate Ltd, a well-known local firm that owns and manages a number of homes in north Bristol, failed to fix a range of problems in more than one property, including a leaky shower in a flat in Montpelier – which soaked through into a neighbouring home.
Council prosecutor Richard Clark told magistrates that council officers had repeatedly attempted to get MB Estate to repair the problems, including a “toilet that was continually broken” and a “bathroom that had no working hot water tap”, as well as a fire alarm that was “only partially installed with bare wires coming out”.
Magistrates were also informed that a resident living in Cheltenham Road, Bristol, had to put up with water and damp seeping through the wall from next door, and upon inspection it was found that the shower in the rental property owned by MB Estate was in a poor state of repair, with a clear gap that would allow water to seep through.
“The room is a self-contained studio flat,” said Clark. “The property was occupied by a couple with a young daughter. They had not had any leaks in shower room, and didn't have any hot water to the hand basin in this shower room either. Mr Dulay did eventually do the work.”
MB Estate and its owner Munjit Dulay were fined a total of £5,873.
Councillor Paul Smith, Cabinet Member for Homes and Communities, said: “The failure of Munjit Singh Dulay and MB Estate Ltd to respond to these problems has led not only their own tenants to be affected by the poor conditions but also the neighbour, whose property has been damaged by their negligence.
“The disregard that has been shown in dealing with these serious issues was demonstrated in the lack of attendance at the court, and as a consequence he now has to pay a fine.
“We urge landlords to cooperate with our officers to avoid court cases and fines which are much more expensive than undertaking the improvements. The vast majority of landlords do this and working together we can improve housing conditions within the city.”