Just a Criminal

Just a Criminal

9:26 AM, 10th December 2019, About 2 years ago 15

Text Size

George Lindsay aged 55 from Erdington was successfully prosecuted by Birmingham city council and sentenced to pay a fine of £19,970 and only got away without jail time, because the guidelines did not permit the judge the option.

Lindsay was found guilty of failing to obtain an HMO licence and 13 infringements of HMO regulations that included:

– Endangering 10 people including 4 children with missing smoke alarms

– Missing and inadequate fire doors

– Mattresses blocking fire escape routes

– Scorched electrical fittings

– No gas and electrical test certificates

– No kitchen facilities for a tenant

– Roof leaks into a bedroom

– Missing shower head forcing 9 people to share a bathroom

The Council had to contact the local fire service and immediately make the property safe. What is worse is that Lindsay had 4 properties and had been renting for 20 years under who knows what conditions.

Property118 would certainly not want to call him a Landlord! These are exactly the sort of criminals other councils need to be chasing rather than hounding out brilliant landlords that provide much needed housing with onerous regulations, paperwork and costs .

Acting director for neighbourhoods at Birmingham City Council, Robert James, said, “In the middle of a national housing crisis it’s absolutely disgraceful that landlords, like Mr Lindsay, are taking advantage of people in this unscrupulous way. When the council is made aware of properties like these, we’ll do all that we can to pursue rogue landlords and to ensure that tenants are kept safe and their rights to decent housing are upheld.

“HMO properties can be a great means to providing affordable housing and we’ll continue to work closely with the landlords who provide a fantastic service. However, we must ensure that standards are upheld so that citizens in Birmingham get the housing which they deserve.”



Comments

by Mick Roberts

12:13 PM, 14th December 2019, About 2 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Mark Alexander at 10/12/2019 - 09:44
Very good points Mark,

If u talked to some of my tenants I had to evict last year cause of http://www.selectivelicensingtruth.co.uk then u would think I am the worst Landlord on the planet.

by Michael Barnes

19:46 PM, 14th December 2019, About 2 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Mark Alexander at 10/12/2019 - 09:44
The landlord of a HMO SHOULD be aware of the state of the common parts of his property, and has a legal duty to maintain them.

Failure to perform adequate inspections and take appropriate action on any findings is not a mitigating circumstance.

by Michael Barnes

19:53 PM, 14th December 2019, About 2 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Luke P at 10/12/2019 - 10:53
One difference between no MOT and no GSC is that in the no MOT case the person who failed to comply is putting himself at risk of harm whereas the LL with no GSC is not.

LLs are providing a paid-for service and have a duty of care to their customers.

by Luke P

20:11 PM, 14th December 2019, About 2 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Michael Barnes at 14/12/2019 - 19:53
Not if they have passengers and are amongst the other (innocent) road-using public.

by Chris @ Possession Friend

20:15 PM, 14th December 2019, About 2 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Michael Barnes at 14/12/2019 - 19:53Agreed Michael that the Landlord should be aware of the condition of common parts.
I'm not sure about the analogy with No MOT only putting the driver at risk - if the vehicle crashes because of a fault, its likely others will be involved - hurt.
I don't think any commentator of this forum is trying to justify the ( Bad, let me stop at Bad, and NOT Criminal, which I'll come onto ) Landlords behaviour.
What is being said, rightly, is that Penalties punishments ;
1. Don't fit the circumstances ( look above at my FTT £31 K Penalty example ) and,
2. Penalties are One-sided. This brings me on the the term 'Criminal' Landlord.
Housing law offences are breaches of Housing Regulations - law, and Not CRIME, as in anyone's definition. i.e Damaging anothers property, and Financial default of lawful liabilities, aka = RENT !
Very fitting of Govt to allow Imprisonment if you default on HMRC or Local Govt - Council Tax, but owe anyone else money and you 'takes your chances ' !
If we're going to use the term Criminal Landlord, then let Justice be equitable ( as it likes to pretend ) and when Tenants are [ effectively ] dealt with for Contract Default, and, the Government calls a 'spade, a spade' ( no racial inference intended ) then, and only Then, will we call Landlords Criminal.
Lets not forget, there are far more " Criminal " Tenants out there than Landlords.
Pardon me if I've elaborated Luke's point excessively ( hopefully without condoning the landlord concerned. )


Leave Comments

Please Log-In OR Become a member to reply to comments or subscribe to new comment notifications.

Forgotten your password?

BECOME A MEMBER