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London agent’s £37,000 bill after “repeated negligence” over HMOs

A London council’s action against a property agent it has accused of “repeated negligence” has resulted in £37,000 of fines and costs levied against the individual.

A statement from Southwark council says the nine HMOs in the Rotherhithe area owned and managed by Omar Patel - director of management companies Let Share Ltd and Live Work Study London Ltd - were built in the past four decades and “look very nice”.

Some tenants were paying as much as £950 per month.


However, the properties variously lacked fire, heat and smoke detectors, secure fire doors and protected escape routes. 

The council statement says Patel’s “repeated negligence” was particularly trouble. “His previous convictions in Newham make it clear that he knowingly endangered the lives of his tenants” says the authority.

At Camberwell Green Magistrate’s Court back in May, Patel was sentenced to costs and fines of £18,117, for offences concerning seven properties. 

Offences relating to two further properties were heard at the same court this week where Patel was sentenced to costs and fines of £19,162. 

According to the local council, District Judge Ezzat expressed disbelief “at the scale of negligent profiteering” from Patel, whose total costs and fines come to £37,279.


Councillor Victoria Mills, cabinet member for finance, performance and Brexit, says: “[Southwark] council takes fire safety extremely seriously and our council homes are fire risk assessed and maintained to the highest standard … I hope that this result ensures that all landlords make sure that their properties are properly maintained and that all fire protection equipment is present and functioning. I would also encourage anyone who lives in an HMO, to let us know if they suspect that fire protection isn’t up to scratch.”

  • S l
    • S l
    • 31 July 2019 10:38 AM

    Surely the council is obliged to give the landlord notice to improve before taking to court? surely the court should ensure the council is doing it right without shoving their power into the face of the landlord for the sake of it? The 3 tier system, parliament, court and police are there to protect the law are adhered to. Not just support each other. They are supposed to stand alone and prevent abuse of power. Perhaps many landlords are not fully aware of the legalities which i suppose is not the point but to be fair, the council doesn't really advertise it widely for all to know. Honestly, smoke alarms and doors does not come to even 1% of the fine imposed. i certainly hope the fines are actually being used to build more affordable homes than being put back into the council for fat paycheque

  • icon

    Council give warning never. Use the funds sensible never. Councils are the biggest abusers of rules and regs and council tax thieves.

    S l
    • S l
    • 31 July 2019 12:12 PM

    If cases go to court re civil matters to claim monies owed, the claimant are required to give 2 letter of demand before he can commence legal proceeding. Its the technicality which can throw your case out the windows. Likewise, i should think this should apply to the council in civil cases but maybe not criminal cases and in this prs, i think it is a crime not to abide the laws

  • S l
    • S l
    • 31 July 2019 12:09 PM

    Hi guys, can i pick your brain? I got a 4 bedroom house. got 1 tenant left contract less than a year expire on 14/9/19. However, i need to move him for a group of new tenants who wish to have the house from 19/8/19. what can i do to entice the old tenant to move? i really need this new contract. I had previously told the old tenant that we might have to move him to the flat in town closer to his work but had not done so as the flat needed updating. Its now completed and can i move him? Its not stated in the contract tho. thanks. Furthermore, i recently found out he had not pay any council tax since moving in last november 2018.

    PossessionFriendUK PossessionFriend

    He knows he's got you by the short and curlies and your gonna have to buy him out.

  • icon
    • 31 July 2019 12:14 PM

    I would have thought this tenant would much prefer the new place you have available.
    Get him to view it.

    S l
    • S l
    • 31 July 2019 12:40 PM

    I am hoping but he is being difficult even with viewings of the house despite only paying a room and he is likely to try and get something out of it as he did with paying bills and council tax despite clearly stated on contract. can i use s21 etc or is there another way? thanks. I just dont need trouble from him by refusing to move out at end of tenancy although i needed it prior to the end of tenancy. He is currently away in his home country. thanks


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