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'No licence' landlord gets four-figure bill after ignoring council warnings

A private landlord has been ordered to pay more than £1,000 after admitting operating in Burnley without a proper licence. 

Matthew Hartley admitting managing a property in a selective licensing area within the town. The prosecution was brought by Burnley council. 

At the town’s magistrates’ court. Hartley pleaded guilty by post and was fined £200 and ordered to pay £225.75 costs, £584 in compensation for the loss of licence fees income, and a £20 victim surcharge. 

The court was told that the council had introduced selective licensing in the area as a way of tackling poor management of private rented properties. Under the scheme, houses within designated areas are required to be licensed. Hartley bought the property in 2013 and was informed by the council on several occasions between March 2014 and June 2015 that it needed to be licensed. 

In November 2015 a council officer visited the house and spoke to the tenant who confirmed she had been living there since the beginning of that year. A further reminder was sent to Hartley in January this year. However, the court was told that no complete valid licence application had been received by the council.

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