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Landlord ordered to pay more than £45,000 for substandard housing

A rogue landlord who pleaded guilty to 45 charges relating to properties he owned in Wirral has been fined £32,000 and ordered to pay £13,611.60 costs at a hearing at Liverpool Crown Court.

In a prosecution brought by Wirral Council under the Housing Act 2004, the landlord, Gary Fixter, from Chester, pleaded guilty to the 45 offences, which involved failing to comply with improvement notices, breaches of Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMO) management regulations and failing to produce documents upon request.

The offences related to Fixter’s ownership and management of two HMOs, one on Alexandra Road in Birkenhead, the other on Rake Lane in Wallasey, as well as a self-contained flat on Grange Road, West Kirby.

Each property was found to be in serious disrepair, while there was also evidence of inadequate property management during inspections by Wirral Council's Housing Standards Team, which led to several improvement notices being served.

Among the more serious hazards uncovered by the inspection included longstanding penetrating dampness, defective fire alarm systems placing the occupants lives at risk by compromising their ability to escape the building in the event of a fire and dangerous and untested electrical installations requiring substantial works to make them safe.


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