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Landmark rental deposits case reveals world of 'fake' short-lets

rental deposits|Adéla Koubová's|||

Tenant groups in Scotland have called for councils to clamp down on landlords who rent out properties under the guise of holiday lets.

Adéla Koubová's

If follows a court case where Edinburgh Holiday and Party Lets (EHPL) was ordered to refund Adéla Koubová's (pictured) deposit after a housing tribunal ruled her former flat owned by Mark Fortune, a businessman who has been refused entry to Scotland's landlord register - was not a holiday let.

After one day in the property which was on Gillespie Crescent (main picture), which she said was freezing because of a hole in her bedroom window, Adéla gave four weeks' notice to EHPL which then failed to give her deposit back.

A series of housing tribunal rulings have now rejected the firm's argument that it is operating holiday lets from Mr Fortune's properties, reports BBC Scotland. It means people living in them should get the same protections as ordinary letting agreements.

However, housing campaigners are demanding that further action is taken against the firm. A spokesman for Living Rent said most tenants did not have the time or resources to take landlords to housing tribunals.


He adds: 'Mark Fortune has been refused landlord registration and yet his properties have continued to be rented out across the city. Tenants face conditions unfit for human habitation and have their deposits improperly withheld while the authorities take no action.'

It urged both City of Edinburgh Council and Police Scotland to start enforcing their own rules on the issue.

Mr Fortune (pictured) has denied that he operates as a landlord and rents out flats, insisting that the properties were operated by limited companies, not him personally.

BBC Scotland previously revealed how former tenants said they were given monthly holiday let contracts to sign, despite making clear they were in Edinburgh to live and work.

Pictures: Streetview/Adéla Koubová/BBC


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