Fined: Forest Gate letting agent who crowded up to 23 people into Gants Hill HMO licensed to house six
PUBLISHED: 17:00 09 October 2018
A Forest Gate letting agent who crowded up to 23 adults into a Gants Hill home licensed to house only six has been fined £7,500.
Marvel Estates Limited, which managed the House of Multiple Occupation (HMO) in Beehive Lane, agreed to pay the civil penalty fine to Redbridge Council following a central London tribunal on September 28.
Enforcement officers investigated the property after neighbours complained about overcrowding in June last year.
They found 16 people, plus evidence of a further seven living there.
However, the HMO licence was for only six tenants.
The tenants were subjected to a lack of sufficient cooking, washing and toilet facilities, according to a council spokeswoman.
The company, based in St Katherine’s Road, had initially appealed against the fine imposed by Redbridge Council.
After the tribunal hearing, Cllr Farah Hussain, cabinet member for housing and homelessness, said: “We are determined to root out rogue landlords and this financial penalty makes it clear we mean business.
“It’s unacceptable for tenants to be living in conditions which fail to comply with legislated requirements.
“We want to work with landlords to prevent this kind of situation but if they are not willing to do so, our message is clear – we will find and fine you.”
HMO licensing is mandatory in Redbridge and landlords that do not comply with the conditions face being prosecuted or fined up to £30,000.
The council’s expanded selective licensing scheme also means all privately rented property in 14 wards need to be licensed to ensure that they are used and occupied correctly, and are well managed.
Property owners or agents can apply for a licence here: https://www.redbridge.gov.uk/housing/private-rentals/apply-for-a-property-licence/