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HMO landlords ordered to pay more than £30k for breaching licence conditions

Two landlords have been ordered to pay more than £30,000 for breaching fire safety and over-occupancy licence conditions at their House of Multiple Occupation (HMO) in north London.

Barnet Council brought a prosecution against Mark Goldsmith and Lian Hatuka for multiple breaches of licensing regulations on a property in Golders Green.  

Council officers discovered that the property on Sandringham Road, NW11 9DP, had no fire alarm or emergency lighting systems during a routine inspection.

It also emerged that six people were living at the property, which was only licenced to house five occupants.

The two landlords pleaded not guilty to charges of failing to comply with their licence at Willesden Magistrates’ Court, but the pair were found guilty of failing without reasonable excuse to comply with their licence conditions. Goldsmith and Hatuka were ordered to pay £15,420 each, including the council’s costs.

Cllr Gabriel Rozenberg, chairman of the housing committee at Barnet Council, commented: “All too often landlords think that their legal obligations are met when they submit their HMO licence application. However, all licences have conditions that landlords are legally obliged to comply with to ensure the safety of their tenants.

“I am delighted that the courts support our approach to driving up housing standards for tenants throughout the borough.”

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