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Liverpool footballer and landlord accused of poor housing standards

decent housing

Tenants living in Liverpool footballer Cody Gakpo’s flats have complained of disrepair, structural problems and vermin infestations.

The Dutch-born Premier League star, who has a substantial real estate portfolio in five cities in The Netherlands through his Samaritan firm, was drawn into the decent homes debate after photographs taken by regional newspaper De Limburger appeared to show evidence of serious neglect in several of the apartment buildings.

Dead mice were left to decay on dirty stairwells, along with mouldy walls, loose cables and holes in plasterwork.

The Mirror reports that the letting agent acting on Gakpo’s behalf charges high rents of up to €875 a month for one damp basement flat riddled with mould. De Limburger said Gakpo used the services of Stefan Stals, an employee of finance company Elevate Finance, who deals with tenants’ issues and collect rents.

Stals insisted that all maintenance issues with the properties had been dealt with promptly but admitted he had only checked the condition of four of the 11 flats that Gakpo owns in Roermond. Although there had been a mice infestation, these had been exterminated.

Football landlords

Gakpo isn’t the only top-flight footballer to have a lucrative side-line in property. Bayern Munich striker Harry Kane has an extensive portfolio - believed to be worth £13 million, while Man City player John Stones has built a £15 million nest egg in his image rights company, including a property investment portfolio.

Ex-Liverpool and England player Robbie Fowler is estimated to be worth at least £31 million, from investing mainly in BTL terraced houses and flats. However, they’re all overshadowed by David Beckham’s £62 million property portfolio.

As part of the Renters (Reform) Bill, the UK’s private landlords face a new Decent Homes Standard setting a clear bar for what tenants should expect from their home, ensuring it is safe, warm and decent.


Decent homes standard