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Bradford Landlord Fined For Failure To Repair Buy To Let Property

A Bradford landlord has been fined £2,500 for failing to repair one of his buy to let investment properties that had a leaking roof.

Bradford landlord, Mohammed Majeen Khan, failed to comply with a notice from Bradford Council ordering him to improve the property he owned.

Tenants of the Great Horton property, a family of six, had complained to the Council after Khan had failed to replace damage to the building’s roof, leading to water leaking in and damp spreading.

When Bradford Council officers visited on June 26 2018 they found a number of issues with the property in addition to the leaking roof. These included the absence of a working fire alarm system, the absence of any linked smoke detectors, and an inadequate number of working electrical sockets.

There were also other issues, including cupboards missing doors and the property was found to be a generally poor state.

The Bradford landlord failed to respond to a number of requests through to late October. He was given a two-week extension, to November 13, to carry out the work, but when the Council inspected in late November the works had still not been done. Another inspection in March found no work had been completed.

Further to the latest visit a prosecution of the Bradford landlord was brought by the council.

Khan, of Aireville Road, was not at court – Magistrates were told that he had phoned the court earlier in the morning to say that although he wanted his day in court, he woke up that morning to find he was not able to move his foot.

However, council prosecutor Harjit Ryatt pointed out that Khan had made similar last-minute calls before important meetings in the past.

He said: ‘Historically when asked to attend police interviews things have followed the same pattern – half an hour before the interview he’ll phone up to say he’s at a hospital appointment or has fallen ill. That is his modus operandi.’

Hearing this, magistrates agreed to go ahead with the case in his absence.

Bradford and Keighley Magistrates Court found Mr Khan guilty in his absence. Along with costs – the Bradford landlord will have to pay a total of £3,490.

Source: Residential Landlord

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Poor Living Conditions Cost Buy To Let Landlord £12.5k

Failing to improve the poor living conditions at his buy to let rental property has cost a landlord more than £12,500 in fines and costs after his prosecution.

The buy to let landlord based in Bedford, Mr Balwinder Singh Chandi, owns a property in Bedford Road, Marston Moretaine, a small village near Bedford.

Following a visit by council officers to the buy to let rental property, he was served with an Improvement Notice by Central Bedfordshire Council as a result of the poor living conditions found at the rental property.

However, the landlord did not make the necessary improvements within the timescale laid down by the council, and as a result of his failure to rectify the poor living conditions Central Bedfordshire Council decided to take the matter the matter further, resulting in a court date.

The council took the case to Luton Magistrates Court on 18 December 2018, where Mr Balwinder Singh Chandi pleaded guilty and received a fine of £10,000.

In addition to the large fine for failing to improve the poor living conditions at the HMO rental property, the landlord was forced to pay a victim surcharge of £170 and also ordered to pay costs of £2,356.33 – Therefore required to pay a total of £12,526.33.

Speaking after the court case, Cllr Carole Hegley, Executive Member for Adults, Social Care and Housing Operations at Central Bedfordshire Council, said: ‘Landlords of Houses in Multiple Occupation must apply for a licence, which is in place to ensure that tenants are safe.’

She continued: ‘Despite us requesting that improvements be made, the landlord carried on and has paid the price.”

Landlords who fail to apply for a licence for Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMOs) will be committing an offence which may result in a prosecution, criminal conviction and a large fine.

Source: Residential Landlord

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Rental Property Fire Leads To £20,000 Fine For Buy To Let Landlord

A former buy to let landlord has been fined £20,000 for risking the lives of his tenants after a rental property fire broke out last year.

Terry Mills, 62, placed the lives of his five tenants at risk after a fire broke out and tore through his rental property in Worthing, West Sussex. The rogue landlord admitted that he had a ‘high level’ of culpability for the blaze due to his failure to replace a faulty fire alarm in the property.

Brighton Magistrates Court was told that two people became trapped upstairs when the property fire broke out in the three-story Victorian house which had been converted into flats. Although the residents escaped without injury, one was taken to hospital and treated for smoke inhalation.

The court was told that the fire was caused by a cooking surface being left unattended. Chris Chatterton, defending Mills, argued that the cause was therefore ‘through no fault of Mr Mills.’

Prosecutor Michael Stoneham said: ‘West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service received a phone call to attend a fire in Portland Road. The watch manager noticed smoke issuing from the building and four of the residents were stood outside the property. The purpose of sentencing in this type of case is to protect the safety of individuals living in such premises’

District judge Tessa Szagun added: ‘[The fire] was in the process of spreading to the loft. It was ascertained that there were two people trapped inside on the second floor of the property due to the stairs being smoke logged.’

When sentencing the landlord, district judge Tessa Szagun said: ‘The purpose of sentencing in this type of case is to protect the safety of individuals living in such premises by ensuring that there is no financial gain by any person cutting corners. [There is] also a necessity to deter others from doing so.’

Due to his guilty plea, Mills’ £20,000 fine was reduced from an initial penalty of £30,000. However, he was also ordered to pay £1,743.47 costs to West Sussex County Council.

Source: Residential Landlord

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Landlord Ordered To Pay Compensation For Burning Tenants’ Possessions

A Wrexham buy to let landlord has been ordered to pay £12,000 in compensation after burning his tenant’s possessions when she fell behind with the rent.

Rogue buy to let landlord Tyrone Holmes, of Kensington Grove, in Box Lane, Wrexham, pleaded guilty to the charge of criminal damage levied on him at Mold Crown Court.

52-year-old Holmes had hired men to clear the flat that his tenant had been renting. They got rid of household furniture, clothing and electrical items.

Tennant Lydia Russell was shocked to return home to the flat, situated in Green Road, Brymbo, to find all of her possessions were gone. She received a text from her landlord that stated that her belongings had been removed from the flat.

Ms Russell had been residing in the property for six months but in recent times had fallen into rent arrears.

Holmes had instructed workmen to remove the possessions from the property. The jury at Mold Crown Court was told that when Ms Russell’s sister went to confront the landlord at his house ‘three big lads’ were standing outside near a white van and a flatbed truck.

The sister also saw two men burning items in the back garden. It appeared as though the items had been removed from the rented property. While serious rent arrears can be lawful grounds for eviction it does not justify the destructive and spiteful behavior exhibited by the rogue landlord in this case.

Prosecuting barrister Brett Williamson said: ‘Some of her property was dumped on the pavement outside and some of it was taken away. As a result, criminal damage was caused and she [the tenant] never saw some of her possessions again.’

Holmes plead guilty to the charges and the Judge Niclas Parry ordered the landlord to pay the compensation owed to Ms Russell by 31 October.

Source: Residential Landlord