Court orders HMO with fire safety failures in Camden to pay £49,000

A management company running a House in Multiple Occupation (HMO) in Camden have been prosecuted for fire safety failures.

Monsoon Properties Limited were ordered to pay fines and costs totalling over £49,000 for the failures at the flat in Tavistock Place, WC1H 9RX at a sentencing held at Highbury Corner Magistrates Court on Thursday, 8 June 2023.

Monsoon Properties Limited pleaded guilty to charges on breaches of regulations 4, 7 and 8 of the Management of Houses in Multiple Occupation (England) Regulations 2006 at a previous hearing on Thursday, 11 May 2023. Issues noted included inadequate fire detection system, obstructions on the means of escape, defective fire doors, defective oven and hob and smashed wall tiles.

The Court fined Monsoon Properties Limited £10,000 for each breach of regulations – a total fine of £30,000 – and to pay Camden Council’s costs of £7,020, plus a surcharge of £12,000. This means Monsoon Properties Limited must pay a total of £49,020.

Councillor Meric Apak, Cabinet Member for Better Homes

This isn’t the first time Monsoon Properties Limited have been prosecuted and they should know - as should all landlords and management companies in Camden – that we will not hesitate to take landlords who we suspect are breaking the law to court. We will also seek to ban bad landlords – our record of securing seven banning orders against rogue landlords is more than any other Council in England.

Camden is committed to ensuring the highest standard of fire safety across our housing. This of course means a deep dive into safety in our own council housing and our significant investment includes ensuring our homes have appropriate fire doors, emergency lighting, fire alarms and fire stopping. It also means ensuring we hold private landlords and management companies to the same high standards – to ensure all our residents have safe homes to live in.

Councillor Meric Apak, Cabinet Member for Better Homes

Separate enforcement action in the form of financial penalty notices has been taken against the licence holder – Roukshana Begum and letting agents Snayders Limited.

Action has been taken against Ms Begum for failure to comply with several licence conditions including the failure to comply with the schedule of works required to ensure the property complies with Camden’s minimum HMO standards. The works which had not been carried out to comply with licence conditions included allowing an undersized room to be re-occupied, failure to display a copy of the licence within the property (which meant that tenants were not aware one of the rooms was undersized), property not being maintained in reasonable repair (blocked wash hand basin and leak under bath), failure to carry out fire safety works and failure to install wash hand basins and additional sockets in bedrooms.

Camden Council has been providing support to the tenants living at the flat in Tavistock Place who lived with these issues. The property has now been re-inspected by the Council and the majority of issues have been resolved.