Rogue Birmingham landlord fined £24k
Rogue Birmingham landlord fined £24k after putting lives of tenants at risk
A landlord who has property in Birmingham was recently fined £24k for failing to obtain a HMO license and multiple breaches of the HMO Management Regulations. It was reported that the property was a death trap for his tenants. Following an inspection from local housing officers they were forced to prosecute the landlord for tenant safety.
Some of the breaches the officers found included:
Fire alarm not working
Rubbish blocking an escape route.
Windows were not fitted with safety glass.
Numerous broken lights within property.
Numerous occasion of dirt and mould.
What still confuses me is the speed or lack of it to prosecute the Birmingham landlord. As he failed to renew his HMO licence when expired in May 2014. That is two years that this property has been utilised and endangered its tenants. It is two years that the landlord has been collecting rent.
The property was brought to the attention of the housing officers by West Midlands Fire Service as they were concerned about the living conditions at the property.
HMO licensing exists because tenants living in this type of accommodation are almost 17 times more likely to be killed in a fire than an adult living in a similar single-occupancy house.
It is worth remember that this rogue landlord is the exception not the rule, the council has over 1,800 licensed properties with the majority of landlords being responsible and law abiding.
It does not state how many bedsits were in the particular property so we do not know if the fine reflects the potential income the landlord was receiving.
If you could change the legal process what would you change?