THE MANAGER of two unlicensed Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMOs) has been fined £6,000 – in a landmark action by Solihull Council.
The authority issued the fine after finding the houses in the north of the borough had missing fire doors and smoke alarms – meaning they did not meet acceptable health and safety standards.
The properties also did not have the appropriate HMO licence.
An HMO is any property containing three or more people from two or more households.
Where an HMO contains five or more people from two or more households it is required to have a licence.
The penalty, which has now been paid, is the first of its kind issued by Solihull Council, with work now underway to bring the houses up to an acceptable standard and ensure the proper licences are in place.
The Housing and Planning Act 2016 provides the local authority with the power to levy a civil penalty against any landlord who commits certain offences relating to HMOs.
Coun Andy Mackiewicz, cabinet member for climate change, planning and housing, said: “These new powers enable us to levy penalties on rogue landlords, keeping tenants safe and ensuring housing standards throughout the borough remain high.
“I am glad that the first penalty of this type has been issued, with the revenue raised from this going towards our vital public services.”