£20K fine for negligent landlord

21 February 2019

A negligent Southwark landlord was sentenced to costs and fines of £20,015, for failing to apply for a landlord licence that would have better protected his tenants, at Camberwell Green Magistrates’ Court, 14 February.

Southwark Council prosecuted Omo Ayoade, 45, 30 Chipstead Avenue, CR7 7DG, for his failure to apply for the licence and respond to communications concerning his properties: Flat 2 and Flat 3, 58a Camberwell Church Street, SE5 8QZ.

The council introduced landlord licensing for all Southwark landlords in January 2016, this helps to crack down on rogue landlords who endanger and take advantage of vulnerable people. The council checks every licenced property for hazard such as fire safety, overcrowding and repair issues. The landlord or managing agent is also assessed for suitability and required to carry out regular safety checks and submit certificates for gas and electrical safety.

The council has dealt with various issues at Ayoade’s property in the past and prosecuted him for failing to comply with an improvement notice. Ayoade was found guilty at Camberwell Green Magistrates’ Court, 29 January 2013, and sentenced to fines and costs of £1,938.

More recently, in November 2017, bedbugs were reported to the council by an occupant of one of his flats, and further to this, in July 2018, the council learned that a leak had caused the ceiling to collapse in one of his lower flats. The council visited the premise and served an abatement notice on Ayoade, ordering him to fix the ceiling, but to this date he has still not carried out the work and the council is looking to fix the issue and bill him for it retrospectively.

Cllr Victoria Mills, Cabinet Member for finance, performance and Brexit said: “We take the safety of tenants in private rented properties here in Southwark extremely seriously and our landlord licensing scheme is one of a number of initiatives that the council has introduced, to protect tenants.

“This is a great result, and I hope that it will encourage any landlords in Southwark who still don’t have one of our licenses, to apply immediately.”

The council is looking at introducing a Gold Standard system, to identify good landlords, support inexperienced landlords and challenge bad landlords. Southwark Council invites everybody to find out more about this and share their ideas and opinions here.

Page last updated: 21 February 2019