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Badly managed HMO ends up with five-figure fine for owner

A landlord who rented out a house in multiple occupation has ended up with a £10,000 fine after pleading guilty to failing to implement satisfactory management standards following an inspection by council officers. 

The court was told that a Mr Fiaz, of Wallasey, had let the property, converted into 20 bedsits located over commercial units, to a number of vulnerable adults who were expected to live in the property with serious health and safety hazards.

He was fined a total of £10,339 for offences relating to the Housing Act 2004 at Wirral Magistrates Court. The fine is the highest fine yet handed out in Wirral for this offence.

Wirral council’s housing officers visited the property and found defective and missing fire precaution measures, dangerous electrical wiring with exposed live wiring, damp and mould growth and poor bathroom and kitchen facilities.

“Councils have a duty to act if they are aware of hazards that could affect a tenant’s health or safety and if landlords fail to respond to informal advice, enforcement action will ensue. Failure to comply with housing legislation will result in court action and potentially hefty fines” explains a Wirral authority spokesman. 

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    Why only £10k when he could easily have killed someone with the "dangerous electrical wiring alone"? That figure probably only equates to one month's salary from his rental incomes and no where near as big enough a deterrent to other rough landlords. He can't use the "I didn't know" excuse, he knew exactly what he was risking and obviously didn't care for anything except lining his own pocket!

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