Private landlord, Lucy Sherry, was found to have breached the Protection from Eviction Act 1977. She was found to have harassed her tenants, and did so with reasonable cause to believe that her conduct would lead to the tenants giving up occupation of the property.
Her actions included serving tenants with an invalid notice to leave the property in an attempt to evict them; invading the tenants’ privacy; arranging viewings of the property without notice; ignoring housing advice giving by Bristol City Council; and sending a series of harassing emails.
Ms Sherry was ordered to pay £3,080 back to the tenants and £300 costs by the First Tier Tribunal (FTT) following a hearing on 9 June 2020.
In a second case, Bristol landlord Charles Banda was ordered to pay £1569.10 back to the council for housing benefit payments he received from the Authority relating to non-compliance with an Improvement Notice served under the Housing Act 2004.
Mr Banda failed to remedy issues identified by the council in an Improvement Notice served in November 2018 regarding leaking sewage pipes and taps in a property occupied by a 69 year old adult. The council completed the works in default.
The decision was made by the FTT on 12 May 2020.
Councillor Paul Smith, Cabinet member for housing, said: “This repayment order shows how important it is for tenants to come forward and assert their rights. The council is dedicated to assisting tenants where help is needed.
“If you are a private tenant being harassed in your home or if you have been illegally evicted, then you may be able to claim your rent back and we urge more tenants to come forward.”
To report a rogue landlord or agent, visit: https://www.bristol.gov.uk/housing/report-rogue-landlord.
To find out more about Rent Repayment Orders, visit: https://www.bristol.gov.uk/housing/help-to-apply-rent-repayment-order