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Firm fined £9k for failing to keep Wavertree apartment block safe

ByReport2

Nov 12, 2023

A London-based property company has been hit with a fine worth thousands of pounds for failing to fix vital fire and electrical issues at an apartment building in Wavertree.

Ateres Investments Limited was fined at Liverpool Magistrates Court after it failed to comply with two improvement notices served by Liverpool Council, in relation to a residential property on Lawrence Road. After inspections were carried out in June last year, a series of hazards were identified, including defective fire doors within communal areas of the property.

The Hackney-based company has now since been hit with a near £9,000 bill after a hearing earlier this month.

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The court heard how electrics in the communal areas appeared to be obsolete and without any regular testing. There were also uneven flooring and steps within one of the flats, and an absence of thumb-turn locks which would have slowed exit from the building in the event of a fire.

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After pleading guilty the director of the company, Philip Gluck, acknowledged that the notices served by Liverpool Council requiring works to be carried out had not been complied with.

The Magistrates hearing the case on Thursday November 2 imposed a fine of £6,000 plus Liverpool Council’s own costs of £858.80, and a £2,000 victim surcharge.

Cllr Sarah Doyle, Liverpool Council cabinet member for housing, said: “Landlords have a legal responsibility to make sure their properties are safe for their tenants. It is a basic right to expect a property to have safe wiring and working fire doors, and in this case the property had neither.

“Ensuring properties are kept in decent condition is the minimum we expect and if management standards fall short, we will take the strongest action. I welcome the fine imposed by the Magistrates Court and hope it also serves as a reminder to other landlords that we will take them to court if they fail to act on improvement notices.”

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