Council acts to protect tenants

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The Council has successfully prosecuted a landlord for not complying with housing laws designed to protect tenants under the Housing Act 2004.

Harvinder Balli of Handsworth, Birmingham owns a property in Haddon Drive, Eastleigh which he rented to tenants. In January 2013 the Council’s Environmental Health team were contacted with regard to the lack of heating in the property.

Following an investigation, formal notices were served onto the landlord. An Improvement Notice requiring that heating be provided in the property and also a Request for Documents which required him to provide current Gas Safety certificate, current electrical installation report and an energy efficiency certificate.

The notice was not complied with and the Council had to carry out the works in default of the notice. In February 2013 the Council successfully prosecuted Mr Balli for not complying with the notice and for failure to provide the requested documents. Mr Balli appealed this conviction.

At Southampton Crown Court on Tuesday 29th July 2014, the Crown Court upheld the conviction for not producing the required documents to the Council. Mr Balli was fined £2,500 with £1,360 costs and £120 victim surcharge was also imposed.

Deputy Leader Councillor Anne Winstanley said:

“The Council takes the issue of tenant health and safety extremely seriously and we welcome the Judge’s decision to uphold the earlier magistrates’ conviction. I hope that the fine and costs of almost £4,000 sends a strong message to landlords that they must ensure that the health and safety of their tenants is protected.”

For more information contact the Council’s Environmental Health team on 023 8068 8329 or at eh@eastleigh.gov.uk

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