A company has been given a £12,000 fine after confessing to a series of breaches in housing legislation, including fire safety, in a King’s Lynn property. The Pure Portland Management Ltd case has been described as “alarming” by council officials, who are urging property owners to ensure they are fully aware of their legal responsibilities.
In a hearing that was held on Wednesday in front of King’s Lynn magistrates, the company pleaded guilty to a total of as many as fifteen offences under the 2004 Housing Act, although separate charges against company directors Laurie Betts and Michael Wilson have now been dropped. The case was in connection to the condition of a HMO (House in Multiple Occupation) in Portland Street in King’s Lynn, where numerous legislation breaches were discovered by inspectors.
Problems detected in the property included mould growth, dampness, defective lighting, a failure to test electrical installations and a lack of adequate fire resistance to internal partitions. The house was first visited by housing officers from West Norfolk Council in September 2015, when they immediately banned two of the flats in the property from being occupied by tenants. The officers made the decision as they deemed that the tenants were at risk of harm, due to the flooring being structurally unsound and a hazardous electrical installation posing a fire safety risk.
The cabinet member for housing in West Norfolk Council, Adrian Lawrence, says that landlords need to fully comprehend their responsibilities and obligations in regards to the properties they let and own, and that very specific regulations apply to HMOs to ensure that minimum safety standards are met.
Contact Source Fire for advice on fire safety assessments.