A landlord who showed a “flagrant disregard” for her duties, including failing to replace a condemned boiler, has been struck off.
Glasgow’s licensing committee removed Madiha Tariq from the register of private landlords after hearing how she also failed to provide basic gas and electrical safety certificates.
It is an offence to let any house without being registered, which can be punished by a fine up to £50,000.
An inspection of Ms Tariq’s property at Everard Drive, Springburn, in November 2018 found:
- “Extensive signs” of damp mould on walls
- Boiler had a ‘Do Not Use’ sign “warning of danger”
- Gutters were in “serious need of repair and replacement”
- Radiators in “poor condition” with some leaking
- The tenant had advised inspectors that she continued “to use the boiler” and had “signed a disclaimer letter”, as she “had no other means of heating or hot water”
Inspectors “did not detect any areas of asbestos as complained of” but added they are “not qualified to make such a finding”, a report added.
A council official said the landlord, who did not attend the licensing hearing, had five properties in the city. He said the tenant at Everard Drive had approached Govan Law Centre with concerns.
The case was taken to the housing and property chamber of the first-tier tribunal for Scotland. The chamber ruled in July 2019 that the landlord had failed to comply with a repairing standard enforcement order made in December 2018.
A rent relief order was issued which reduced “the rent payable under the tenancy by 90%”.
The chamber’s decision stated: “The overwhelming evidence was that the landlord simply failed to engage with the tenant at any level in relation to the condition of the property.
“Only the most minimal attention has been paid to her obligations.”
It continued: “The tribunal considered that the landlord’s continuing failure to comply with her duties is a matter of the utmost concern.
“She has failed to provide basic safety certificates in respect of gas and electrical installations, and has failed to attend to a service, replacement or repair of a condemned central heating boiler.
“The tribunal has rarely been faced with such a flagrant disregard for the duties of a landlord and takes the most serious view of the situation.”
The matter has also been referred to Police Scotland, the council official told the committee.
Following the decision, officials in the council’s registration unit asked the landlord for additional information on all properties in their portfolio, but a response was not provided.
All tenants were also contacted with one raising “concerns about the windows not being wind or watertight”.
Councillor Alex Wilson, who chairs the licensing committee, said: “The failure to provide gas certificates, carbon monoxide, legionella, these are all things that can lead to death, and certainly to injury.
“I think the fact that they haven’t provided any of these items timeously is of great concern to this committee, given the fact we have a history in this city where there were a couple of deaths due to fire.”
He said the situation was “unacceptable” and “the fact that other action has already been taken against this landlord shows they don’t appear to be a fit and proper person in my eyes”.
All private landlords must register with their local authority to ensure that they are a “fit and proper person” to let property.