Potential HMO discrepancy/infringement? | The Tenants' Voice
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Potential HMO discrepancy/infringement?

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575 views 1 replies latest reply: 05 July 2016

Hello there! Stumbled across this forum/website in search of some answers after a nightmare of a rental experience this year in the town Selly Oak. 

A potted story of the entire experience: During my second year of university at the University of Birmingham  that I just sat we rented a 8 man house through a letting agency and land lord. It was an absolute terrible experience, the Landlord refused to ever meet us, and there was a catalog of errors which were only partially seen to by the letting agency maintence team, or by friends of the landlord. The problems were never satisfactorily resolved.

It wasn’t until yesterday when we were moving out, that a Land lord of the neighbouring came round in a huff requesting to see our landlord (fat chance!), saying that the manhole cover outside our kitchen had no screws, was therefore loose and was oozing sewage into our shared side return. He also stated it was a safety hazard as with a loose man hole cover, someone could easily fall down the exposed hole. 

This is where my question stems from, he mentioned that this problem would void an HMO licence if he had one, along with other factors like (apologies if its a bit hazy) no clear drainage piping down the side of the house, and non-covered/exposed pipes. Is this the case?

I looked on the Birmingham HMO registry (Selly Oak in particular) and it showed that our landlord did infact have an HMO, but two things struck me about it. The Licence only started from September of 2015, we had been living and paying rent there from July 2015. Moreover, he had not listed one of the bathrooms that he had put into the house, in fact it was listed as having no bathrooms. Is this a significant discrepancy? The fact that he has incorrect information on the licence and he had occupants living in the house without one?  Is this enough, when coupled with the factors above for us to potentially seek a settlement or at the worse pursue legal action?

In true internet fashion, ill summarise the main points into questions:
Has our landlord acted in anyway illegally?
If such, is it grounds for legal action?

Thanks in advance! 


If anyone has any specific legal knowledge on these sort of issues, could you email me at james.heaney.ems@googlemail.com

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You are seeking very specific legal advice on your specific case which, vithout revewing all documentation, is impossible to do.

I dont think you will have any recourse- and it is very difficult to obtain any once you have vacated a property. However, if you have serious concerns, you shuld report the matter to the local housing department to investigate appropriately.

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