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Property let out in dangerous condition by rogue landlord

A landlord who failed to improve his rental property, leaving his tenants in dangerous conditions, has been fined.

Haroon Karim from Nottingham has pleaded guilty to two offences under the Housing Act 2004, failing to comply with Housing of Multiple Occupancy licence conditions and failing to comply with an Improvement Notice. 

Nottingham council officers visited the landlord’s property in the city and a number of category 1 and 2 hazards were found. 

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This included dangerous stairs, structural collapse, excessive cold, damp, mould, fire hazards, issues with food safety and sanitation and drainage

Karim was then served an Improvement Notice, which he failed to comply with, exposing the tenants of this property to these hazards for an unacceptable level of time.

In addition, there was a breach of the HMO licence conditions in that the landlord had failed to provide adequate amenities within the kitchen that were suitable for the number of the tenants living in the property. This included failing to provide a microwave oven or an additional cooker; failing to provide an adequate number of electrical sockets and failing to provide sufficient amenities for food preparation and washing up by not providing an additional sink or dishwasher.

 

During sentencing, Nottingham Magistrates Court ordered Karim to pay a fine and legal costs totalling £1001.42.

A spokeswoman for the local authority says: “We will only take legal action as a last resort, if a landlord doesn’t not work with us to improve their property. Most landlords are good landlords, but there are some, like Mr Karim, who give others a bad name. I would urge tenants to contact us if they have issues with their home, that aren’t being sorted.”

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    Not sure what one learns from these extreme - and very sad - examples.

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    Once again the landlord was given the chance to carry out the works, maybe this is another example of ''the law doesn't apply to me''.

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    Why should rogue landlords ever change, with such a paltry £1001.42 fine - including legal costs??!!

    It's a slap in the face to decent landlords.

    Such criminals literally put people's lives at risk, so such small payments are pathetic, especially compared with the costs that ethical landlords put into their properties to maintain them at a decent standard for their tenants.

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    Once again we see how ineffective a Licensing system really is - which obviously means we need more of it, durr?
    Why not just have a compulsory register for all rental properties and their LLs (free of charge). The Council then employ a few people to make occasional visits to all properties, starting with the ones they have been informed of bad practice, and bring about proceedings where appropriate.
    Ah, but the costs you might say, how will it be paid for?
    Three sources: The first is a fixed penalty for not being on the register in the first place. After all if it's free to register there is no financial reason why you wouldn't do it.
    Secondly, the fines being levied on these bad LLs should be realistic (why should thegood LLs, and in turn the tenants, have to subsidise the bad?)
    Thirdly, the register should be freely open to the HMRC, and that way they can do a quick cross check for Tax not being paid and subsequent prosecution. It's not rocket science that if someone is dodgy in one area, then they are likely to be dodgy in another, and it just needs some joined up thinking.
    Ah, dream on - sensible solutions and joined up thinking is just something that lives in fantasy land. Farm it out to some giant outsource company (like Crapita), over charge, under deliver, award the directors over inflated salaries and bonuses, and tell everyone that we are World Class! (yeah right...)

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