Letting Agent Fined for Not Applying for HMO Licenses
A letting agent has been fined £8,000 for failing to apply for House in Multiple Occupation (HMO) licenses at three properties in Birmingham.
Ultrabarn did not apply for licenses for three properties in Erdington and Sutton Coldfield. The firm was fined £1,500 for each of the three offences, plus £500 each for seven breaches of HMO management regulations. It was also ordered to pay full costs of £2,631 and a victim surcharge of £120.
At one property, the letting agent did not ensure the fire escape route was maintained and there were holes in the ceiling around service pipes. It also failed to guarantee the good working order of firefighting equipment and fire alarms.
At another property, the agent breached HMO regulations regarding fire escapes. Furthermore, there was no fire blanket in the communal kitchen, no smoke detectors where required in communal areas, and insanitary conditions and inadequate provision for the disposal of rubbish.
A Birmingham City Council spokesperson says: “Ultrabarn is an experienced and well-known letting company in this part of Birmingham, and really should be setting an example. Instead, they fell well below standards we expect of the private rented sector.”1