HMO Tenants win right to a refund of rent from convicted landlord
Posted 21/06/2016 by Macdonald Martin Ltd.
Mr Andrew Coyle, was convicted of managing two unlicensed houses in multiple occupation (HMO) in Elton Close and Meyseys Close in December 2015. Now a legal tribunal has decided that Mr Coyle must refund his tenants their rent which amounts to £2,934; he was originally fined around £10,000 for his offences.
Oxford City Council supported tenants to apply for rent repayment orders, which allow tenants who have been housed in unlicensed HMOs to apply to the First-tier Property Chamber (Residential Property).
HMO’s often form a high percentage of accommodation in cities, in Oxford alone an estimated 1 in 5 of its population live in HMO’s . They often serve homes to the poorest in the city and that the majority are unsafe to live in. The popularity of HMO’s mean that landlords can get away with providing poor quality housing whilst still ensuring tenants are found.
Another oxford landlord, Kazi Arafat Ahmed was prosecuted after an environmental health officer investigated a house he managed last July. On the visit, it was discovered that four tenants were living in an unlicensed high-risk HMO that had no working fire alarm system or fire door along with other defects in the house.
In court, Mr Ahmed claimed he was ‘unaware’ that he needed a HMO license. This was the 8th case that Oxford City Council had prosecuted a landlord for HMO offences.
If you are a landlord of a HMO and are worried that your premise doesn’t meet the regulations required give us a call! We are available on 0191 5237870 or email us at [email protected]