A man who rented a flat illegally to private tenants in Croydon is set to be added to a national database of rogue landlords after he and two connected companies were prosecuted and fined.
Gausan Limited, its director Hakki Parlak and affiliated company Conqueror Legal Limited have been ordered to pay a combined total of £24,000 in fines, plus court costs, after failing to either apply for a property licence for the New Addington flat or answer council requests for more information.
By law all private sector landlords in Croydon must apply for a property licence under a borough-wide scheme introduced by the council in 2015 to improve housing standards for tenants.
During an inspection on 31 October 2018, council officers found the Central Parade flat had a tenant and her two children living there but no property licence.
Despite sending several letters over the next eight months to both Mr Parlak, of Blenheim Gardens in Wallington, and Gausan Ltd’s office at Denmark Hill in Camberwell, the council received no further information.
The council took Mr Parlak, Gausan and Conqueror Legal Limited, also of Denmark Hill in Camberwell, which is listed as Gausan’s company secretary, to Camberwell Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday 1 October, where they were all found guilty and ordered to pay a total of £29,810, which included court costs and victim surcharges. The flat in New Addington now has a new landlord.
The council also issued an improvement notice on the property after finding it had no smoke detectors and defective electrics and windows. The council will recharge the cost of these repairs back to the owners.
As a result of the convictions, Mr Parlak will also be added to the national rogue landlord database run by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government. This was set up to allow councils across the country to check whether landlords have broken the law in other areas.
“Croydon has a property licensing scheme so tenants and landlords know what housing standards we expect, and these prosecutions underline why it’s important.
“This was excellent proactive work by our property licensing team, and the heavy penalties issued by magistrates serve as a warning to other landlords considering flouting the law.”
Councillor Alison Butler, deputy leader and cabinet member for homes and Gateway services
The council’s cabinet is set to decide later this month whether to consult on applying for Government permission to renew the borough’s property licensing scheme for another five years.