Halifax Druggies Making This Lovely Flat Unlettable

Halifax Druggies Making This Lovely Flat Unlettable

18:42 PM, 17th May 2017, About 4 years ago

Text Size

After nearly 30 years in this business and being the founder of Property118 and run the forum since 2011 I thought I had encountered most problems.

However, this is a new one for me.

The picture above is my “problem property”. It is in Queensway, Halifax, West Yorkshire HX1.

My tenant has moved out because of a major problem in the block. The Police and the Freehold Management company have been about as useless as a chocolate fireguard so far but I have yet to unleash our legal hounds (Cotswold barristers) onto them.

The problem is that druggies keep breaking into the secure communal areas and trashing the place. They are the worst kind, young ‘hoodies’ taking heroin so discarded needles are common place.

The freeholders are now refusing to mend the doors, smoke alarms and clear up their filth.

We only have a tiny mortgage on the property so I could just secure the place, leave it empty and sit back whilst somebody else finds a solution or the druggies eventually kill themselves or each other. However, for those who know me, I’m not like that.

My first thought was to offer to rent my flat to a hard ass ex military man or a Police officer for half rent for 12 months and see what happens. I’m still considering that.

Market rent is only £450 for a two bed flat. I’d actually accept £200 for the right tenant.

I put a post about my dilemma on my Facebook wall and many other suggestions were offered including:-

  • Put up posters and give leaflets to all local residents offering a reward of £1,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the drug dealers operating in the flats
  • Start a Neighborhood watch group
  • Contact the local amateur Rugby club and consider offering the 50% discount on rent to a couple of burly Rugby prop forwards

I think these are all great ideas.

Any other thoughts and suggestions?

Thanks in advance

Mark Alexander – founder of Property118.com



Comments

by JohnCaversham

9:01 AM, 19th May 2017, About 4 years ago

How about suing the Man Co over breach of 'right to quiet enjoyment' legislation....?

by Ross Tulloch

10:04 AM, 19th May 2017, About 4 years ago

Mark, Yes, I did mean get it rented by police ideally. All the talk about stronger doors etc is fine, but actually the problem needs sorting at it's root. I would talk to the police about it, and surely someone would love free rent in return for addressing the problem... There must be a solution out there...

by Ian Narbeth

10:40 AM, 19th May 2017, About 4 years ago

Any other thoughts and suggestions?""
Have classical music playing in the common areas. This has been known to deter ne'er do wells from loitering in public places. Alternatively, (as was famously said in the Blues Brothers film) "both kinds of music:Country & Western". The little ba***rds won't be able to take much Waylon, Willie and Dolly.

Put up signs saying "Smile you are on CCTV".

by Mark Alexander

11:03 AM, 19th May 2017, About 4 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "John Maynard" at "19/05/2017 - 09:01":

That may well happen!
.

by humphrey humphrey

18:57 PM, 19th May 2017, About 4 years ago

One option I have considered for a similar issue is to employ a local (legitimate) security company to provide 24 hr security. This tends to be a locally 'renowned' firm and generally a notice in a window maybe enough to deter them.

by John Frith

19:48 PM, 19th May 2017, About 4 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Mark Alexander" at "19/05/2017 - 07:43":

Talking to some of the other affected residents may be more informative than the management company, or you visiting, as they are closer observers. Unless the whole neighbourhood is like that (it doesn't look it from the photo), there must be some dynamic that singles this block out. It could be that a dealer lives in one of the apartments and the punters find the communal area handy. In which case getting rid of the dealer might do the trick.

Regarding the politics, my comments weren't about you or the site's staff, but about posters using this site for political rhetoric.

by Jessie Jones

15:28 PM, 20th May 2017, About 4 years ago

You need to remove whatever it is that is attracting the undesirables.
If it is warmth, then can you remove any panes of glass from the upper storeys to let out the heat from the communal areas?
Some kinds of lighting make it easier to locate a vein for injecting drugs. Get the types of lighting that makes it difficult to find a vein.
If there are any places where they can sit, can these be engineered so that it is uncomfortable to sit? Concrete stairs can be trimmed with metal which would make them cold.
There are devices which emit a sound at a frequency that is irritating to younger people but cannot be heard by the elderly and I have heard of shops using these to keep youths away. They are barely audible, but still annoying. They would have to be well concealed to prevent damage.
Either way, I would look for solutions which make your communal areas less attractive to these herberts.

by Mandy Thomson

17:54 PM, 20th May 2017, About 4 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Jessie Jones" at "20/05/2017 - 15:28":

"There are devices which emit a sound at a frequency that is irritating to younger people but cannot be heard by the elderly and I have heard of shops using these to keep youths away. They are barely audible, but still annoying. They would have to be well concealed to prevent damage."

It's called the Mosquito https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Mosquito You would need to check with any residents who have children first, especially if those children have disabilities such as autism or hearing problems.

by H B

10:18 AM, 21st May 2017, About 4 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Jessie Jones" at "20/05/2017 - 15:28":

Removing glass from the windows? What happens when it rains?

The downside of some of your ideas is that if you make it so unpleasant that heroin addicts are driven away, might it not put off legitimate tenants too?

by Mandy Thomson

10:24 AM, 21st May 2017, About 4 years ago

It would have to very unpleasant in the extreme to drive heroin addicts away. I suspect the attraction is the users are hidden from public view in the building.