Southwark council prevents landlord renting out former caretaker’s storeroom as flat

30 January 2017

A south London council has won a planning appeal to stop a local landlord renting out a flat that was 27 percent smaller than the minimum standard – and had only one proper window.

Southwark Council used planning enforcement laws against landlord Christian Podina from Rotherhithe New Road after it discovered he was renting out the one-bedroomed flat in Rope Street, SE16.

The flat – a former caretaker’s storeroom – measured just 27m squared (minimum size for planning approval is 37m squared) and had just one proper window, giving it limited natural light and poor ventilation.

Cllr Mark Williams, cabinet member for regeneration and new homes, said: “We are very aware that there is a housing crisis in London and we want to make sure there are homes being built across our borough, of all types. This does not mean we will allow unscrupulous landlords to make money by renting out unsuitable, cramped and uninhabitable premises wherever they see fit.

“This case shows we will take action against anyone who fails to meet our standards for decent, quality homes for our residents.”

Mr Podina now has four months to stop using the property as a residence, including removal of the kitchen and bathroom. He will also have to pay full costs to the council, possibly several thousand pounds. If Mr Podina fails to comply the council can prosecute.

Page last updated: 30 January 2017