Can I rent property pending Prohibition Notice appeal?

by Readers Question

4 months ago

Can I rent property pending Prohibition Notice appeal?

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Can I rent property pending Prohibition Notice appeal?

I was told by the council (South Holland) in North Cambridgeshire that there was a prohibition notice on my property and the tenant has vacated.

However, when I sent workmen to secure the property this was not the case the tenant was still in situ.

The following week the tenant did vacate and the schedule was left at the property stating three items of work had to be completed as this was a prohibition notice, but the prohibition notice was never served, it was never left in full at the property and it was never sent to me until I requested it by email a month later.

I have asked The council to give me proof of service and they have not yet replied. There were three items on the notice:

  • Electrical report and certificate which I have produced and sent to the council
  • New heating system hot water heating and gas certificate which I have sent to the council
  • A small leak in the bathroom skylight which has been rectified and the council have seen this

As they have all certificates they requested I have asked the council to lift the prohibition notice and they have refused and not given a reason as yet. I have appealed to the tribunal.

My question is now the notice has been complied with and now and appeal has been lodged am I permitted to rent the property pending the appeal?

I am aware the appeal could take months thank you would anybody be able to help me answer this question.
Caroline



Comments

AA

4 months ago

Pretty certain you cannot. Your compliance has to be rubber stamped. You cannot just self approve. What kind of property are you renting where it gets to a prohibition stage. The documents you state should be available for inspection at a moments call.

James Barnes

4 months ago

You usually have 28 days to lodge an appeal when served with an enforcement notice, so really the first thing to consider is if you lodged your appeal in time. The operative date will most likely have started 28 days after the notice was served. If you don't have a copy of the order that's not helpful but it should be registered as a land charge which makes it a publicly available document i.e. one you could request via FOI.
If you've completed the specified works at the property that's a start but to lawfully rent the property again, the you need the Council to revoke the Prohibition Order, if they haven't done this then you'd be beaching the Prohibition Order by letting the property.

It seems to me that the appealing the Order would be going around the houses, it'd be much simpler if you could simply request a visit from the Council and have them revoke the order, otherwise as you say you could be waiting months.

Luke P

4 months ago

Don't rent a hole of a property full of death-traps, but unless there's a specified electrical fault, merely insisting on a report I think wouldn't wash.

How does the unqualified council know there's a fault? I don't know if you suffer the same, but our LA inspectors walk around a (perfectly good) house and insist on us getting (and paying for) and electrical inspection report, asbestos report, structural report etc, 'just because they cannot be sure there *aren't* any issues. They get short sharp from me!

terry sullivan

4 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Luke P at 14/02/2018 - 10:28
this is the creeping control by councils--an oik says jump and you are expected to jump--the 3 items above hardly warrant a prohibition notice!

Caroline Humphrey

4 months ago

The council are being extremely difficult and unreasonable. I had a council officer screaming down the phone ' I can scream louder than you' and then put the phone down on me when I asked what else was required, he said he didn't know because he hadn't had sight of the notice and this is the manager of the private housing department. The house is newly renovated it has a new electrical report and safety certificate which has been sent to the council, it has new heating system and installation and gas certificate it has all been sent to the council and they have not acknowledged that I have complied with the notice. I have complied with the notice because I have provided the two certificates they requested I have also asked them for proof of service of the notice and they will not provide this. I am of the opinion and certain that the notice has not been served legally or correctly and I am of the opinion that the council wish to be difficult and malicious and are trying stop me renting the property although there is no reason to do so now the notices have been complied with. They will not lift the notice even though they have the certificates they requested. The manager did tell me that one of the kitchen worktops was out of place and I stated this was because the plumber had removed it to fit plumbing for a washing machine but the kitchen worktop was not on the notice. It appears they wish to add nonessential cosmetic work to the notice now at a later date. I have requested proof of service and re-sent all certificates and have requested the notice is lifted but had no reply. The house is in excellent order and newly renovated. So I don't know what to do next
The council did visit the property and have seen the small leak in the skylight was fixed and they have possession of the electrical and gas certificates and reports. These were the three items on the prohibition notice. I then asked them to lift the notice and they will not even though it has been complied with and they have inspected and have possession of the certificates

Caroline Humphrey

4 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Asif Ahmed at 13/02/2018 - 17:00Yes I have the documents and I have also emailed them to the council several times, they have acknowledged receipt of them but still have not lifted the notice. It is a small terraced two bedroom property rentable to a couple only. Completely renovated now completely replastered repainted and in excellent order with brand-new certificates and still they will not lift the notice or acknowledge my request for proof of service and give me a reason why
I was recently emailed a copy of the order but it was never served on me. The schedule of works was left at the property with the three items on it but not the complete notice

Luke P

4 months ago

All sounds a bit odd. However, Councils seem to be a law unto themselves. Many a time have I caught them out not following correct procedure and playing the 'I'm-the-only-Sheriff-in-this-town' card. Just as PACE brought the police into line and stopped them from 'deciding' the law, LAs also need a shot across their bow and be told that they must follow the rules themselves. I suspect you're right in that they have failed to serve it correctly. Personally I would crack on with renting it out, let them chase you and present your evidence of both compliance, but also that you have asked for (and not received) proof of correct service.

Chris Daniel

4 months ago

Where justifiable, and evidenced backed - a landlord needs to use the Council's Full complaints procedure and then - if on solid ground, bring a money claim for losses in rent against the council.
As landlords, a victory in this area would greatly 'even the tables'

Wyn Burgess

4 months ago

As well as full complaints e mail the councillors representing the ward the property is in, you may have some luck as most officers hate having councillors ask questions.

Reply to the comment left by Luke P at 14/02/2018 - 14:51I am surprised that the guidance on so many issues is not given through these columns - threaten to report local authorities to the Local Government Ombudsman, citing maladministration. It really makes them jump! For your part, you have to follow all formal procedures for complaints against a council first - this can be done fairly quickly, often using an online complaints form for the first step. The Local Government Ombudsman will not even look at a complaint unless it has already gone through every step of a Council's complaints procedure first. In this first step, use the words, 'Following guidance on the Local Government Ombudsman website, I am contacting you to complain ...

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