Rogue landlords prosecuted

Published Tuesday, 18th March 2014
housing in Rotherham
Housing

A married couple have been successfully prosecuted by the Council for failing to make repairs to a tenanted property they owned in Catcliffe.

Husband and wife landlords, Kassim and Shalina Kurbanali, were each ordered to pay a total of £1,284.61 after they were each convicted in their absence at Rotherham Magistrates’ Court (on March 5) of two offences for non-compliance with an improvement notice.

This was contrary to section 30 of the Housing Act 2004 and non-compliance with a notice served under section 16 of the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976.

Each was fined £500 for each of the two offences, as well as each being ordered to pay a £100 victim surcharge and costs of £184.61. This totals £1,284.61 for each.

In 2013 council officers conducted an inspection of a tenanted property the couple owned at Brinsworth Road, Catcliffe, and discovered a catalogue of faults. These included loose fitting doors and windows, damaged roofing which was causing dampness, leaking toilet systems and a loose fitting shower cubicle. In addition the property had no current electrical or gas safety certificates.

Despite assurances from the Kurbanalis that all the faults in the property would be rectified no work was completed by them.

The Council then took the decision to serve an improvement notice on the couple under sections 11 and 12 of the 2004 Housing Act, which required them to undertake the repair works.

When this approach failed and the necessary repair works were not carried out, it was decided to prosecute them for failing to comply with the notices.

The court heard that the property at Brinsworth Road was subsequently sold at auction in November 2013, having been repossessed by the couple’s bank.

Dave Richmond, the Council's Director of Housing and Neighbourhood Services, said: "There are many excellent landlords in Rotherham who make a positive contribution to supplying the good quality housing needed by the people of Rotherham.

"Unfortunately landlords who behave as these landlords have, give all housing providers a bad name. As a council we have responsibilities to ensure that local people get the excellent housing they deserve. We try to do this by encouraging landlords to quickly bring their properties up to standard. This works in the majority of cases, but when landlords persistently fail to act reasonably, we will not hesitate in taking legal action."