Author Archives: painsmithblog

Tenant’s relationship breakdown

On BBC money box live over the weekend there was a discussion about one type of “hidden household.” That is when tenants in a relationship move into a property together only to end up trapped together in that property when the relationship ends prior to the fixed term of the tenancy ending. This post will […]

More funding to help crack down on ‘criminal’ landlords.

Councils across the country are being invited to bid for £4 million to help them crackdown on what the Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government call ‘criminal landlords. This is now the second time funding has been made available to crack down on what last year the MHCLG called ‘rogue’ landlords. Our previous post […]

Relief from forfeiture for Licensee

In the case of Manchester Ship Canal Company Ltd v Vauxhall Motors Ltd the Supreme Court held that the licensee was entitled to relief from forfeiture. This case is relevant to residential licensees because many are likely to have some form of possessory title and therefore are likely to be able to avail themselves of […]

Financial Fraud

We regularly receive emails and calls about cybercrime and what some refer to as email payment fraud. Unfortunately, it is a growing form of crime so here is an updated post on what email payment fraud is and what readers should look out for. Our previous post on the topic can be read here. Email […]

Money laundering prosecution

Lettings agents who took rent for properties that were never in fact available have been given suspended sentences for money laundering. The agents at Oliver Knights, an online property lettings business, pleaded guilty to charges of money laundering, having knowingly allowed their bank accounts to be used to launder the proceeds of multiple letting frauds […]

Electrical safety

On 25 October sections 122 and 123 of the Housing and Planning Act 2016 came into force. The Housing and Planning Act 2016 (Commencement No. 11) Regulations 2019 bring into force s.122 and s.123 of the 2016 Act. These provisions do not bring any electrical safety standards into force at present but do permit the […]

Marketing a Property

Many letting agents will be familiar with the Competition & Markets Authority’s (CMA) guidance for lettings professionals on consumer protection law. This post will concentrate on section 5 of the guide, Marketing property: advertising and providing information to tenants and the recent update on page 49. Although the guidance has been around since 2014 the […]

Learning Toolkit

The Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government (MHCLG) has published a set of interactive resources to help local authorities with enforcement action against rogue landlords and lettings agents. The 2 resources, an interactive learning module and knowledge bank of questions and answers are designed to complement the MHCLG guidance on tackling rogue landlords. Our […]

Guidance for Lettings Professionals – CORRECTION

In our earlier post this morning we incorrectly stated that the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) published guidance for lettings professionals on complying with consumer protection laws and laws about dealing with other businesses. We should have stated that in fact the CMA has updated its guidance despite it still being dated 2014 on the […]

Guidance for Lettings Professionals

The Competition and Markets Authority has updated its guidance for lettings professional on complying with consumer protection laws and laws about dealing with other businesses, in the context of letting privately owned residential properties. On 3 October a clarification was added to page 49 of the guidance, and to the details section on the page. This […]

Housing Possession Court Duty Scheme

The Ministry of Justice (MoJ) has launched a 12-week consultation on proposals which it hopes will improve support for anyone facing eviction or possession proceedings. The Housing Possession Court Duty Scheme (HPCDS) already offers free ‘on the day’ legal advice to anyone facing possession proceedings, regardless of their circumstances. The scheme includes face to face […]

Landlord banned

On 16 August 2019 the First Tier Tribunal issued a landlord with a 5-year banning order. There was a long interaction between the landlord and local authority who applied for both a banning order and rent repayment order. For the purposes of this post we will concentrate on the banning order. The landlord had been […]

Brent and Harrow Trading standards

Brent and Harrow Trading Standards have carried out checks on agent’s websites to ensure that they are complying with the Tenant Fees Act and other relevant legislation applicable in the Private rented sector. Having investigated 67 letting agent’s websites in both Brent and Harrow, Trading Standards officers have found that just 14 appear to be […]

Signature on deposit prescribed information

In a previous post we discussed the case of Bali v Manaquel. However, this issue continues to raise its head in the county courts and appears to be a common defence for a number of tenants facing possession proceedings. In Bali v Manaquel the tenant argued that the Prescribed Information served on him pursuant to […]

Tenants to pay tax

A number of newspapers have reported that tenants with overseas landlords have received letters from HMRC advising them that they may have to withhold rent to help settle their landlords’ tax liability. We have not seen these letters, but we understand that thousands have been sent to tenants and overseas landlords. The letters are not […]

London landlord fined

A London landlord who divided his 3-bedroom house into 8 flats without planning permission has been fined £90,000 and ordered to pay a confiscation order under the Proceeds of Crime Act of £400,000. In addition to the fine and confiscation order the landlord was also ordered to pay £40,000 in costs. The landlord converted his […]

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