Landlord fined for letting house that was “danger to life”

A Liverpool landlord’s been hit with a bill of more than £2,500 – after being found guilty by magistrates of managing an unlicensed property ridden with defects that had never had a gas safety inspection.

Ahmed Kayse Ahmed – of Norwich Road in Wavertree – was charged with failing to license a property under Section 95 of the Housing Act 2004. He twice failed to attend court, with the offence proven in his absence on 17 October.

During the sentencing hearing on 7 November, District Judge Jack McGarva heard how the property, on Beaconsfield Street in Toxteth (pictured above with the white door), had a litany of disrepair issues. These included numerous reports of mice infestations and the fact the landlord had never carried out a mandatory gas safety inspection during the course of the tenancy, which began in 2014.

Judge McGarva described it as a “serious offence” and said the landlord had demonstrated a “complete disregard” for the Landlord Licensing Scheme, had “exposed the tenant to serious risk” and that the property presented a “danger to life”.

Mr Ahmed was fined £2,000, plus costs of £542.26 and a victim surcharge of £170.

The Landlord Licensing scheme began in 2015 with the aim of improving standards in the private rented sector and so far 49,000 licences have been issued.

Around 20,000 compliance actions have been carried out, with 70% of inspected properties found to be in breach of their licence conditions, more than 2,000 legal and fixed penalty notices have been issued and over 150 landlords prosecuted.

Liverpool City Council’s Cabinet Member for Housing, Cllr Lynnie Hinnigan said: “This case illustrates the importance of the Landlord Licensing scheme in keeping private tenants safe.

“A large proportion of landlords have willingly signed up for the scheme and are working positively with us, which is why it is not fair on them that some are wilfully ignoring the law.

“We will continue to take robust enforcement against those landlords who think they do not need to comply.”

Tenants and members of the public can check if a property has the required Landlord Licence at
https://liverpool.gov.uk/landlordlicensing and report unlicensed properties to unlicensed.landlord@Liverpool.gov.uk.

A bid to renew the scheme for another five years from April 2020 has been submitted to the Government.