A Darlington landlord has been prosecuted for failing to comply with an Environmental Protection Act Notice served on him to remedy defects in his rental property. The tenants were left without heating and the property had several other safety defects.
The landlord, Mr Kieron Munnelly, of South Street Derbyshire, pleaded guilty by post to failing to comply with the notice. He was fined £1,000 for the offence and ordered to pay court costs totalling £500.
The property on Streatlam Road, which was let out at the time of the offences to a mother and her three children aged eight and six years old and two months old, had broken heating, draughty windows, damaged light switches and disrepair to the staircase guarding.
The Private Sector Housing Team from Darlington Borough Council visited the property in March 2014 following a complaint and found that the tenant and her children had been living in the property without heating since October 2013 and was having trouble getting the landlord to carry out the repairs.
The landlord was given every opportunity by the Council to carry out the repairs before the notice was issued.
In the end the works were completed in default of the notice by the Council’s Building Services department and the landlord was charged accordingly. The prosecution case was brought against Mr Munnelly for failing to comply with the notice.
David Burrell, Private Sector Housing Manager, for Darlington Borough Council said:
“Action was taken against a landlord who left his tenants over winter without adequate heating. The Private Sector Housing team works hard to protect tenants and ensure that they are able to live in a safe and warm home.
“It is worth noting that some private tenants depending upon their personal circumstances may qualify for a free or subsidised price gas boiler and should contact Warm up North on Free Phone 0800 316 4320 for further details. Landlords can also make enquires about whether their tenants and properties qualify for a new boiler.”
Councillor Chris McEwan, Darlington Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Economy and Regeneration, said:
“It is shocking to hear that the health and wellbeing of a young family has been put at risk. The Council has a duty to act where landlords have failed to provide safe living conditions for their tenants. Whilst we always try to work with landlords and help them; action will be taken where they fail to adhere to legal requirements”.
"The Council has a Duty to Act where Landlords have Failed to Provide Safe Living Conditions for their Tenants". – http://t.co/qyJo9MgFEb
— LandlordZONE (@LandlordZONE) January 29, 2015