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SOCIAL BOOKMARKS

No Cork landlord faced prosecution after inspections

CITY Hall has not taken a single prosecution against landlords following property inspections in the last three-and-a-half years.

That is despite issuing almost 1,200 notices of improvement over that same period, including 89 as of June 7 this year.

Figures issued by the city’s housing directorate to Fine Gael councillor John Buttimer show that almost 2,000 private dwellings were inspected from 2015-2017, with a further 700 expected to be inspected by the end of this year.

The inspections are conducted by City Hall staff and are designed to ensure compliance with planning regulations, including fire safety.

The figures refer to ‘all privately rented dwellings, including the RAS and HAP schemes, as well as non-assisted private tenancies between tenants and landlords.’

Concerns have previously been raised that City Hall’s enforcement section is under-staffed, leading to a low number of inspections.

The report shows that 1,962 dwellings were inspected from 2015-2017, with 700 more properties expected to be inspected this year.

It also notes that 1,191 improvement letters were issued between 2015 and June 2018, identifying non-compliance and directing landlords to carry out necessary improvement works.

However, not one landlord was subsequently prosecuted.

Mr Buttimer said that the low rate of prosecution was a concern, claiming that every single councillor knew ‘anecdotally’ of cases of substandard housing.