A Manchester-based lettings and management company has been fined more than £21,000 after one of its properties was found to have multiple fire safety breaches.
After the issuing of a civil penalty notice in August 2020 due to the house of multiple occupation (HMO) having breached regulations, and following an investigation by Manchester City Council, Mecca Properties M/CR – which is based on Dickenson Road in Longsight – was found to be guilty of “systematic failings” at a recent tribunal.
The HMO, which is also on Dickenson Road, was found to have no smoke alarms on the first inspection, and Mecca also failed to provide a gas safety certificate when requested.
Deficiencies were also found in the electrical installation at the HMO.
Parts of the property were also found to be dirty and in disrepair, with tiles missing in the bathroom, damaged hallway floors, and a broken window covered with a ‘To Let’ sign.
Mecca Properties tried to appeal the fine through the first-tier Residential Property Tribunal, but this only upheld Manchester City Council’s decision to impose the penalty.
The tribunal also found that the breaches were significant enough to warrant a £21,499 fine.
Manchester City Council said it tried to engage the company on several occasions and offered to help them address the breaches, such as fitting temporary fire alarms – but the director of Mecca Properties M/CRA declined to comment on the council investigation or the outcome of the tribunal.
Speaking on the outcome of the tribunal, Councillor Rabnwaz Akbar – Executive Member for Neighbourhoods at Manchester City Council – said: “The private rented sector is one of the fastest growing in the city and our residents need decent properties that they can trust, with landlords that take their responsibilities to their tenants seriously.
“We know that the vast majority of landlords and managing agents are very good, but for those that are not, I hope that this sort of action serves as a real warning.
“This management agent showed systematic failings and is now thousands of pounds out of pocket [but] this level of fine shows that we are looking for you and we will use the full extent of the law to bring you to account.
“If you or someone you know is concerned with the way your property is being managed, please get in touch.”
Featured Image – Manchester City Council