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Social Housing & Tenancy Fraud in Barnet
What is housing & tenancy fraud?
Fraudulently obtaining affordable housing, subletting for personal gain or not occupying a property as your main home or principal home uses up valuable resources. These should be available to families in most need.
Types of Social Housing Fraud are:
- Application Fraud - if you have made a false declaration or submitted fraudulent documents to obtain a council tenancy
- Unlawful Subletting -if you are subletting the whole or part of your home
- Non-Occupation - if you are not occupying your council property as your main or principal home
- Succession Fraud - unlawful tenancy succession - wrongful succession to a person who does not qualify and submitted false information
- Right To Buy Fraud - where a false application has been submitted
It is a criminal offence to commit the above offences. The Prevention of Social Housing Fraud Act 2013 carries a sentence of up to 2 years and a fine of up to £5,000. Also, any profit deemed to have been made from tenancy fraud can be ordered to be repaid to the Council.
We also prosecute under the Fraud Act 2006, which carries a maximum sentence of 10 years or unlimited fine or both. On more serious cases we will look to recover monies under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002.
We will also consider recovering monies under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 where a tenant has had financial gains when subletting a property.
There will be occasions when we take civil action to recover a property through the County Courts.
How can I hand back keys?
You can hand back your keys to a member of the Tenancy Fraud Team, your Local Housing Officer or Housing office.
If you are a Barnet Homes resident you can also hand your keys back at Barnet House. You may also print out and complete a Surrender Form.
If you know of anyone who may be illegally subletting their home, please let us know by email email@example.com or telephoning the fraud hotline on 020 8359 2007. By reporting tenancy fraud you help us to make sure only those in genuine housing need get a home.
Our dedicated Tenancy Fraud Team has already recovered over 70 properties since their launch in 2011. By working in partnership, we are now taking more steps to improve tenancy checks and verify applications, to make sure homes are given to those who really need them.
We do know the overwhelming majority of tenants occupy their homes legally and that they also share our commitment to tackling tenancy fraud. If you suspect anyone of committing tenancy fraud, please call our fraud hotline on 020 8359 2007 or email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
What's all this costing Barnet tax payers?
Illegal subletting is costly to every Barnet household and prevents families from having a home. The cost to put a single family in temporary accommodation for a year is £18,000. If just one property is returned, this cost reduces and the amnesty campaign will have paid for itself.
Who are our partners and participating housing associations?
- Barnet Homes
- Notting Hill Housing Association
- Family Mosaic
- Home Group
- Metropolitan Housing
How To Report Fraud
To report any suspicions of fraud you can do the following:
Phone our fraud hotline on: 020 8359 2007
You may remain anonymous if you so wish.
- Tenancy Fraud
- North London Business Park (NLBP), Oakleigh Road South, London N11 1NP
- Tel: 020 8359 2007
- Email: email@example.com