Council crackdown on landlords of vacant homes

Liverpool City Council is warning private landlords not to sit on long term vacant properties.

The warning comes as a private landlord was today fined for allowing a vacant property to become a home for vermin.

Giles McHugh of Farnham, Surrey, was found guilty at Liverpool Magistrates’ Court for failing to remove overgrown vegetation and rubbish from the front and rear of a property he owns in Norris Green.

Liverpool City Council made the order after several rodent complaints were made and the premises, in Ravensthorpe Green, was inspected last June.

In July the notice expired and despite further warning letters, the owner did not carry out the work. The work was then carried out by the council in default.

Mr McHugh was fined £500 and ordered to pay costs of £150.

The city council council will also pursue Mr McHugh for the costs incurred in carrying out the works in default.

Councillor Frank Hont, Cabinet Member for Housing, said: “The impact of derelict houses on the local community is immeasurable and infestations of rats and mice cause untold distress. When refurbished this property would make a lovely family home.

“It is part of the Mayoral Pledge to deal with long term vacant houses and engage with owners to bring the properties back into use.

“In this case our efforts were frustrated and we had no option but to take legal action – this should be a warning to those who let their vacant property go to wrack and ruin, engage with us to put the property right or face the consequences.”

Since 2015 Liverpool city council has successfully engaged with private property owners to bring 2,000 long term vacant properties back into use.