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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

Council hits buy to let investors with fines in licensing clampdown

Two landlords have been hit with hefty court fines for failing to comply with a local licensing scheme.

The pair are the latest to be brought before the courts in Middlesbrough for falling foul of the North Ormesby Selective Landlord Licensing scheme which aims to improve standards in the private rented sector.

Under the scheme all private rented properties in the area are required to be licensed by the council, with the licence-holder required to meet ‘fit and proper person’ criteria.

Licence conditions include the carrying out of pre-tenancy reference and annual gas safety checks, as well as the provision of tenancy agreements and having a plan to address anti-social behaviour by tenants.

This week property developer Peter Hall, of Middlesbrough, was dealt with in his absence for being in control or managing a property without having a licence.

Hall was fined £660 for the first three offences and no separate penalty for a further three, and ordered to pay costs of £500 along with a £66 victim surcharge – a total of £2,546.

A second landlord Mohammad Akhtar, of Birmingham, also failed to attend court but was fined £660 with costs of £200 in his absence, as well as a victim surcharge of £66, making a total of £926.

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