There’s no place like HMO

Shah v Croydon LBC [2013] EWHC 3657 (Admin) [Not on Bailii yet. Seen full transcript of judgment] An appeal by way of case stated from a Magistrates Court decision that a property owned by Mr Shah was an HMO and that Mr S was therefore liable for some 14 months Council Tax. And an illustration of the confusion of […]

Half a Storey is no Storey at All*

News has reached us from RH Environmental of a case in Bristol Magistrates on HMO licensing and the counting of storeys. Unfortunately it is not binding but it is nonetheless interesting. The case involves the licensing status of a two storey maisonette on the first and second floor of a property. There was accordingly (as […]

Tell me a storey

London Borough of Islington v The Unite Group Plc [2013] EWHC 508 (Admin) This is an interesting appeal in relation to the counting of storeys for HMO licensing purposes. It actually repeats an argument dealt with in an appeal in a criminal prosecution of a Mr Williams by Cotswold District Council from way back in […]

Its Cold In There

Bristol City Council v Aldfrod Two LLP [2011] UKUT 130 (LC) The Upper Tribunal (Lands Chamber) has recently ruled on the proper use of improvement notices under the HHSRS. When I say recent I should actually say a little while ago. You can blame the recent spate of good weather and a short spell of […]

Plan for this!

R (on the application of Milton Keynes Council) v Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (2011) QBD (Admin) (Harrison J) 11/4/2011 We have previously posted on the saga of the rise and fall of planning permission for HMO property. The story now has a new chapter. A number of local authorities were distinctly […]

A (council) taxing matter

Malik v LB Tower Hamlets [2010] EWHC 2921 (Admin) And so, another council tax/HMO appeal finds its way to the High Court. For those of you wondering why you’ve suddenly seen more of these in the last year or so, there are two answers: (a) a suddent and unexpected bout of efficiency has hit local […]

HMOs and Council Tax

Goremsandu, R (on the application of) v London Borough of Harrow [2010] EWHC 1873 (Admin) As many of you will know the definition of an HMO for the purposes of Council Tax is totally different from that used in the Housing Act 2004 (and in relation to planning uses classes). It is, however, an important […]

Like a blind man searching for a black hat in a dark room

Heffernan v LB Hackney [2009] EWCA Civ 655 is a timely reminder of the importance of having evidence to substantiate a claim for damages. Mr Heffernan was the freehold owner of 16 Penhurst Road, London, E9 (“the property”). The property was converted into two flats, the upper flat being let on a tenancy protected under […]

Emergency remedial action

In Luton Borough Council v Universal Group we have the first (and almost certainly last) decision of the Lands Tribunal under the Housing Act 2004 on appeal from a Residential Property Tribunal (or RPT). 15-17 Chapel Street, Luton is (or was) consisted of a night club on the ground floor and 11 storeys of 13 […]