House with tree trunk growing through two walls has earned illegal rogue landlords £40k-a-year.


House prices are going through the roof, especially in the capital, however you wouldn’t expect to find a property with a long tree trunk growing through the actual walls.

Unscrupulous rogue landlords who gained control of the dilapidated property decided to illegally extend the structure and simply chose to build around the huge plant in the garden.

The three-bedroom terraced house in Clapham, south London, was then inhabited by tenants who decided to make daily use of the table-top and extension plug sockets installed on, and through, the tree.

The trunk had been drilled to allow 240velectricity cables to be fed through and a qualified electrician who was working for Lambeth council said it was the most dangerous site he had seen in 35 years of maintaining council properties.

A rogue landlord has been fined £1500 for renting out a room that could only be accessed by crawling into it.

Yaakov Marom, of Sunningfields Road, Hendon, was fined £1,500 after pleading guilty to failing to comply with an order served by the council prohibiting occupation of the room.

The tenants, who paid £420 a month, could not stand upright to enter the room because of the extremely low ceiling.

The council said the entrance could prevent them from escaping in a fire or an emergency.

Barnet’s environmental health team found the height of the staircase was between 0.7m (2ft 3.5in) and 1.18m (3ft 10.5in), and the door to the room at an address in Sunningfields Road, Hendon, was also reduced in size.

Marom was issued with a prohibition order in February 2012 banning the use of the second floor room of the house.

The court hearing on 5 August 2014 came after council officers visited the house in September last year and discovered the room was still being used despite the prohibition.

Councillor Tom Davey said: “At the very least tenants have the right to expect that the accommodation they are renting is safe.”

Marom was also ordered to pay £1,420 in costs and a victim surcharge of £120.

Landlord Fined £12,000.

A landlord who let cold, damp properties and some with no working toilet and dangerous electrics must pay more than £12,000 for allowing tenants to live in poor conditions.

Robert Emery of Bull Lane, Higham failed to make improvements to two properties in Chatham and another in Gillingham, ignoring legal notices.

He also continued to let the Gillingham property in Adelaide Road despite the council having served a prohibition order in May, preventing anyone living there due to its poor state.

The property in Coronation Road, Chatham had damp, no heating and a broken toilet

Two months after the order was served, council officers discovered new tenants living in the property, which had damp in every room. The tenants were placed there by housing agent Hilton Taylor acting on behalf of Emery.

Another of his properties in Coronation Road, Chatham had a damp problem, as well as no heating and the toilet was broken.

© Copyright UK Landlords Registration Scheme Limited. February 2015