Landlord hits back at Council after Guardian article

Landlord hits back at Council after Guardian article

11:05 AM, 22nd September 2017, About 7 years ago 19

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An article in the Guardian yesterday purporting to expose rogue landlords had the headline “London council finds 35 men living in one three bedroom house”

In the property eight men were found with wall to wall mattresses in one room. Click here to read the full article.

However, the owner, Dr. Sunil Hathi, has threatened to take legal action against Brent council for publicly outing him as a ‘Rogue Landlord’.

Doctor Hathi confirmed that he originally let the property to only three people and was shocked that the property  was being used in this way and was looking to evict the men as soon as possible.

Dr Hathi said: “I have no idea how many people are living at this address, it was originally rented out to three people. This is the first time I have come here in the month they have been living here. We were not aware they were staying here and we are going to evict them.

“Brent council put out a statement to the press saying that it was a ‘Rogue Landlord’ and I resent these comments. They’re highly defamatory and I am speaking with my lawyers.

“I’m not running away from anything, why would I? This house is worth a lot of money. They could have found me in minutes on the land registry.”

The story was uncovered after the council raided the property following complaints from neighbours about overcrowding, anti-social behaviour and fly-tipping.

The Guardian got a quote from Brent Council saying: “Rogue landlords make their money by exploiting people who can least afford it, it’s a shameful practice and this is an especially shocking example.”

However, they failed to find the landlord and only sought a quote from one tenant who was Romanian and could not speak English.

We will have to wait and see what the full facts are in this saga.

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Ross Tulloch

11:43 AM, 22nd September 2017, About 7 years ago

If we leave aside this specific, if all the rooms deemed too small to live in, despite being happily lived in up to now, buy usually one person, were left permanently empty and all the rooms which are definitely over crowded like this story and all the properties which are overcrowded by regulation standards but not by the people living in them, what then?
Many people having to spend more or live further away from work. The people at the bottom of the pile. They are the ones who will suffer. "Rogue Landlords" who compromise safety are a problem. But those who put too many in a property in the view of a council but not in the view of the tenants themselves, are they "Rogue" or merely trying to satisfy a demand?

Annie Landlord

11:45 AM, 22nd September 2017, About 7 years ago

Coincidentally I had just read that story and wondered whether it was a criminal landlord or a landlord that had been duped by a seemingly acceptable tenant. If Brent didn't attempt to contact the landlord before notifying the Press I think that's pretty shocking.

steve p

11:53 AM, 22nd September 2017, About 7 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Ross Tulloch at 22/09/2017 - 11:43
I think you have to be careful, its like saying if an employer pays less than minimum wage is it the employers fault or the employee for taking the job? There are people willing to live in overcrowded and squalled conditions, as they have less out goings they are able to take a job for less money... Its a race to the bottom and certain standards should be maintained...

Having said that in this case it appears the tenants had only been in the property for a month, no effort seems to have been made by neighbours or council to contact the landlord and he seems to be getting the blame as a "rogue landlord" when it sounds like it is more likely a "rogue tenant" im guessing breaking the tenancy agreement... That wouldn't sell as many papers and councils seem to love blaming landlords also..


12:05 PM, 22nd September 2017, About 7 years ago

This is exactly the kind of bad publicity people like Shelter are quick to exploit without finding out the can we share the facts about S24 and how the appalling changes will affect the very people this government want to 'help move up the property ladder'?

Dylan Morris

12:42 PM, 22nd September 2017, About 7 years ago

Shocking that a newspaper would do this but typical of The Guardian. They should be forced to print an apology immediately, sued for libel and made to pay compensation to the landlord.

terry sullivan

12:46 PM, 22nd September 2017, About 7 years ago

sue brent and media--did brent check immigration status of the squatters? i bet not--its a typical loony labor council

it also shows the stupidity of housing law--landlord has to give notice of any visit so squatters stay out for the day

and right to rent is meaningless as landlord did not rent property to them--tories are useless

i have read online that organized crime from all over the world is involved in these letting scams--raises a lot of money

Dr Rosalind Beck

13:35 PM, 22nd September 2017, About 7 years ago

I was the victim of cannabis farmers whose enterprise set my house on fire and cost me a fortune. If my house had been in Brent, no doubt I would have been persecuted and prosecuted for growing cannabis. I hope the landlord does sue Brent as he has said he might. It was also reported in the Mail today.


14:08 PM, 22nd September 2017, About 7 years ago

Most likely Brent council is trying to find an excuse to implement Selective Licensing scheme, same as Newham Council implemented to rip off landlords and raise revenue to award themselves big fat salaries, they are nothing but bunch of thugs and bullies, protected by the law, and for all problems they tend to always blame on landlords. No one seems to think tenants don't abuse the housing law and are free from any blame, the housing laws stincs, as it is heavily weighed against the landlords, and no one takes bad tenants to court from these authorities. This is exactly what encourages this kind of behaviour by tenants because they know they are protected by law, so all blame falls on Landlords. Landlords cannot check their premises at any reasonable time with a short notice to tenants like by first making a phone call, to check premises for any misuse, 24 hour notice is silly, it allows rouge tenants to clear up any evidence of over crowding, It is actually the failure of the local councils to not bring action against rouge tenants and instead they know landlords are an easy target, instead threaten and impose heavy fines and penalties on to landlords. This is shear discrimination Incompetent bunch running mnodern democracy, we landlords now have to police our tenants, check their immigration status, and pay fines for the bad tenants.

Big Blue

17:44 PM, 22nd September 2017, About 7 years ago

It is typical of poor journalism generally, but disgusting of the Guardian, to willingly print a story without knowing - or possibly even concealing - the true facts. As soon as I saw the story my reaction was that the LL was duped - I mean, in all seriousness, what sort of landlord anywhere can 'force' 35 grown men to sleep on mattresses?!?! It makes no realistic sense at all and is scarcely even a credible accusation, even from the Guardian. Now we know the truth, guess what? The landlord is upset and pilloried and libelled when he had no knowledge of this and is in no way to blame. Sue the Guardian, sue the council, and make them apologise. I would say make the guardian write a story about rogue tenants duping the landlord, but that'll be asking too much...!!

Dylan Morris

17:57 PM, 22nd September 2017, About 7 years ago

Reply to the comment left by James Fraser at 22/09/2017 - 17:44
The Press never let the truth get in the way of a good story.

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