A landlord in Birmingham has been fined £6,400 and ordered to pay costs of £3,696 and a £120 victim surcharge for failing to license his House in Multiple Occupation (HMO) and breaching HMO regulations.
Ayoub Yakoob, 38, from Morden, Surrey, pleaded guilty to failing to obtain an HMO license and to nine breaches of HMO regulations at Birmingham Magistrates’ Court.
His letting agent, Mohammed Shehzad, also known as Ashsard Khan, was fined £450 and charged £150 in costs and a £20 victim surcharge after he admitted to nine breaches of the HMO management regulations.
Birmingham City Council officers were called to inspect the property, where they discovered that the fire alarm wasn’t working, the smoke detectors were missing, there were no notices detailing the escape route and there was a hole in the ceiling of the main escape route, which prevents it from being fire resistant. Furthermore, self-closing devices for the fire doors were faulty or missing.
In addition to the fire safety breaches, officers found that chimneybreasts had been removed and the chimney was not adequately supported. Walls were also left unplastered, rooms were covered in plaster dust, mould was growing in a bedroom, one of the bathrooms had been removed, the front door could not close and building rubble was left in the back yard.
Cabinet Member for Neighbourhood Management and Homes at Birmingham City Council, Councillor John Cotton, comments: “The HMO license exists so that officers can carry out checks to ensure the safety of tenants. Failing to apply for the license meant that these checks were avoided for some time.
“Mr. Yakoob and Mr. Shehzad put their tenants’ lives at risk by failing to provide basic fire safety measures and their tenants were also forced to live in filthy and insecure accommodation.”1