Shelter’s Income and expenditure figures highlighted13:57 PM, 4th February 2019
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Subletting a private landlord’s property without permission is breaking the tenancy contract and permits action to evict the tenant. However, if a tenant sublets a council owned property without permission then this is actually a criminal offence.
Suzie Litanda recently pleaded guilty at Highbury Corner Magistrates Court to twice subletting her council flat between December 2013 and September 2016. This was while Suzie she was living with her mother in another council property, a four bedroom house. The council flat was then sublet for £850 a month.
Under the Prevention of Social Housing Fraud Act 2013 Suzie Litanda was ordered to repay the profit made on subletting the flat (approximately £19,000), undertake 200 hours of unpaid work and £600 in additional costs.
Camden Council, Cllr Meric Apak. said: “At a time of widespread calls for a national council house building programme, as many families struggle to find or afford suitable homes, it is both illegal and inexcusable for people to be profiting from subletting council homes that could be used by a family in need.
“I want to assure Camden residents we are committed to building a range of social and affordable housing through our Community Investment Programme and keeping our current council homes out of the hands of profiteers by taking those we suspect of breaking the rules to court.”
Therefore, there is a disparity in the law for the same offence depending on whether you are a council or private landlord.
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