A tenancy fraud awareness campaign by Riverside in the South East has proven to be showing illegal sub-letting the door, with twelve illegally occupied properties returned since May this year.
Tenancy fraud is a wider South East problem, with all local authorities tackling the issue. A key amnesty launched by Riverside was designed to allow the sub-letters to move out without fear of prosecution and/or fines. By regaining control of these properties, we are now able to give those most in need a home in our communities.
Our Tenancy Fraud team are discovering that the motives behind sub-letting are varied. One tenant started a new relationship and then bought a house with their new partner, leaving the three-bedroom Riverside house to two adult sons to live in. This is not only illegal, but the sub-letting family members did not take care of the property. Since the property was recovered, a family with three children have moved in.
Another case discovered that a Riverside tenant owned three private properties as well as illegally sub-letting out our property. The tenant lived in a three-bedroom detached house with a drive, whilst renting out the other two private properties and illegally sub-letting the Riverside property to a third party. Investigations found that this case of tenancy fraud had been going on for over eight years. The property has now been recovered.
Riverside has a duty to house certain vulnerable members of society including children and families. While people are illegally using Riverside properties for sub-letting or queue jumping, households are left waiting on the housing list. The Prevention of Social Housing Fraud Act 2013 means tenants committing tenancy fraud in social housing tenancies now risk criminal investigation and prosecution in addition to the risk of losing their tenancy and significant court costs.
What is tenancy fraud?
- False applications
- Unauthorised assignment
- False succession
What can you do?
Stand up for your friends, family and community; report any suspicious activity in confidence to [email protected] or call 07816 071781