Two London landlords have been handed hefty rent repayment orders for letting poorly managed, unlicensed HMOs.
Five tenants shared £14,055 after a First Tier Property Tribunal ruled that the shared house in Copperfield Street (pictured, right) was unlicensed under Southwark Council’s additional licensing scheme for two months and then had no mandatory licence when the fifth tenant moved in for five months.
It heard there were no fire doors in the property which was not being properly managed, and that landlord Andre Trepel failed to keep the central heating and hot water services working.
Although it ruled that both Arune Buragaite and Trepel (No. 1 London) Ltd had control of, or managed the property, and received rent, cases against them were dismissed.
Professional landlord It said that as a company director, Trepel was a professional landlord, and added: “It would very likely have been difficult for a licence to have been obtained for the property without works being undertaken, meaning that by letting the property without a licence the first respondent was able to avoid expenditure which he would otherwise have to have incurred and it would also increase the hazards for the tenants.”
£16,566 RRO In another case, three tenants living in an HMO in Muswell Hill Road (main picture) that was covered by Haringey Council’s additional licensing scheme were awarded a £16,566 rent repayment order.
The tribunal criticised Landlord Jalay Enterprises Ltd’s failure to cooperate with the procedures or to file any documentation.
It added: “We note complaints raised by the applicants in regard to the respondent’s failure to maintain the property (persistent damp in one bedroom and defective lavatory) and have particular concerns about the applicants’ allegations that the property was deficient in fire protection – only one battery operated smoke alarm, no door to the kitchen and no fire doors throughout the flat.”
Read more about RROs Subscribe here for the latest landlord news and receive tips from industry experts: