Social housing is in short supply, which is why the buy to let sector has grown so large in the last 20 years. Most landlords buy a second home with a view to generating an income; they don’t usually rent one property while letting out another. However, one landlord decided to apply for a council house, even though he was in the process of buying an investment property with a family member. He didn’t declare his property interests and the council were none the wiser. Fast-forward 13 years and this landlord’s chickens came home to roost.
Council Investigation into Dishonest Tenant/Landlord
Someone must have reported the landlord, as Slough council began an investigation into his property interests. They discovered he hadn’t declared his interest in an investment property when he applied for his tenancy. He was also found to have claimed benefits in 2017, despite enjoying a nice income from tenants living in his investment property.
Slough Council took the tenant to court and won. The landlord was found guilty of three counts of making false representations. The landlord was ordered to repay £48k plus costs of £6,800, as well as being handed 100 hours of community service and 10 days of rehabilitation. If he doesn’t pay the fine before October 24, he risks being sent to prison for 18 months. In addition, he had to move out of his council house, so it could be given to a more deserving tenant.
Defrauding the Council Leads to Hefty Fine
“We will not tolerate those individuals who seek to defraud the local taxpayer,” said Counsellor Mohammed Nazir. “Social and council housing is there to provide much needed homes for our residents, not to generate illicit profits for dishonest tenants.”
Council Will Take Action Against Rogue Landlords
Mr Nazir said the council was happy to take action against dishonest and unscrupulous tenants who denied vulnerable families a home so they could pursue monetary gain. He warned that the council would always seek the largest possible penalties when people are caught out and prosecuted.
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