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Landlord fined almost £3,000 for unsafe HMO

A buy-to-landlord in Worcester has been ordered to pay almost £3,000 for failing to install adequate safety measures. 

Mohammed Rafiq, who was pursued by Worcester City Council for almost 12 months, was fined £2,783 by magistrates for operating an unlicensed house of multiple occupation (HMO) in Canterbury Road, Worcester, WR5. 

Rafiq, who failed to install proper fire safety equipment in his rented property, had been operating without a licence since November last year, despite being notified at the time by the local council. 

Following several unsuccessful attempts to the lanldord, the city council was left with little alternative but to take Rafiq to Worcester Magistrates Court. 

Rafiq was charged with operating the HMO without a licence and for failing to take safety measures including failing to supply firefighting equipment and having insufficient fire alarms, failing to install emergency lighting or self-closing fire doors and failing to display his name, address and contact details inside the HMO.

Cllr James Stanley, chairman of Worcester City Council’s communities committee, commented: “The majority of landlords in Worcester abide by the law but as this case demonstrates, the city council won’t hesitate to act in cases where landlords exploit tenants, provide dangerous or substandard accommodation or flout their legal obligations.

“I would urge any Worcester residents who are facing difficulties with their tenancy or have concerns about an HMO to contact the city council’s housing team for advice and support."

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