Raid by Brent housing officers finds 35 men living in semi-detached house
A dawn raid on a home in a suburban street discovered thirty-five men bedding down on mattresses in every room except the bathrooms.
Brent enforcement officers and police entered the converted three-bedroom semi-detached house shortly before 6am yesterday morning (19 September) after neighbours complained about overcrowding, anti-social behaviour and fly-tipping.
Eight men were found sleeping in one of the rooms that was decked wall to wall with mattresses. Even the kitchen contained a sleeping area, while another mattress was found laid out under a canopy in the back garden with no protection against the night temperatures.
An investigation is under way to track down the landlord of the unlicensed House in Multiple Occupation (HMO) and legal action could be taken.
Cllr Harbi Farah, Brent’s Cabinet Member for Housing and Welfare Reform, said:
“Rogue landlords make their money by exploiting people who can least afford it – it’s a shameful practice and this is an especially shocking example. Any landlord treating their tenants unfairly should be in notice – we’re coming for you.“
Last week, Brent Council approved new civil penalty enforcement powers which will enable the council to issue a penalty of up to £30,000 for certain housing officers, without having to attend court.
This video footage shows the overcrowded conditions found inside the property
Brent landlords and agents that let out shared accommodation can apply for a licence online at www.brent.gov.uk/prslicensing.
For more information about property licensing in Brent or for help with submitting a licence application, visit www.londonpropertylicensing.co.uk/brent.
For all the latest news and events, you can sign up for the free London Property Licensing newsletter here.