Newham Council Issues Direct Fine On Landlord
The government has recently given councils new powers in dealing with ‘rogue’ landlords and Newham Council is probably the first council in England to issue a direct fine under the new rules.
The new powers now mean that councils are now able to dispense with having to undergo lengthy and costly legal processes.
The ‘rogue’ landlord was fined at the end of April under the new legislation in the Housing and Planning Act 2016, the fine was within twenty days of the powers coming into force.
Councils are now able to issue fines that can be as high as £30,000 dependent upon the severity of landlord’s actions in breaching the conditions.
The landlord received the fine because of a fire breaking out in his Plaistow flat that was rented out. Upon carrying out its investigations, the London Fire Brigade discovered that the flat did not have one single fire alarm installed.
A team of Newham Council officials investigated shortly afterwards and found that people were still living in the flat and there was still no sign of fire alarms in spite of the danger to tenants and a severe breach of the landlord’s licence conditions.
The landlord was issued with a Financial Penalty Notice of £5,000.
A spokesperson for the council said: “Our swift adoption and application of the new powers underlines our commitment to protect tenants from rogue landlords. In this case there was a single breach of the law, but by failing to install fire alarms, even after a blaze in the block, this landlord clearly showed his reckless lack of care for the safety of his tenant”.