Rogue Hornchurch landlord fined for running illegal HMO in Seven Kings
PUBLISHED: 16:00 27 July 2018
A Hornchurch landlord will have to fork out more than £7,000 for running an illegal house of multiple occupancy (HMO) in Seven Kings.
Harmandeep Singh, of Ardleigh Green Road, was found guilty of letting her three-storey property in St Albans Road as an unlicensed HMO last Thursday, July 19.
She received a £5,000 fine and was ordered to pay £2,000 costs and £170 victim surcharge with a court collection order imposed.
Cllr Hussain, cabinet member for housing and homelessness, said: “This is another example of a landlord being irresponsible and putting the lives of tenants at risk.
“Ms Singh failed to comply with the law and failed to properly manage the property.
“We are determined to put a stop to rogue landlords for the better of our community.
“It’s imperative the safety of our residents come first and the soon to be expanded property licencing scheme will help us to do so.”
The court heard how Singh had been letting rooms on every floor of the mid-terraced house - including in coverted loft.
Evidence of scorching was found on the ceiling of the second-floor loft room, which contained its own set of kitchen facilities and had restricted headroom and an excessive distance to escape to the fire exit door.
The property lacked an adequate means of escape in the event of a fire and adequate fire precaution measures.
Singh breached the Housing Act offences under the Housing Act 2004 which involved failure to comply with an Emergency Prohibition Order, failure to licence a HMO and failure to properly manage the HMO.
All properties with three or more unrelated people living and sharing facilities need a property licence anywhere in Redbridge. Residents can report unlicensed properties by calling the Council’s hotline on 020 8708 4845 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
If a licensable property is not licensed the landlord could:
- be issued with a civil penalty of up to £30,000 or face prosecution in a magistrates court with an unlimited fine
- be subject to forfeiting any profits made while renting the property illegally
- be required to repay the rent to whoever paid it.