Next Episode of Council House Crackdown is
Presenter Michelle Ackerley and property expert Luke Doonan follow investigators as they crack down on rogue social housing tenants, seize their homes and give them to families in genuine need.
Today, investigators catch up with a woman who applied for and got two social housing properties - and unlawfully sublet them while she was living in a third property. She even managed to buy one of the council properties at a huge discount under the Right to Buy scheme.
Michelle tells us how this tenant on the take was rumbled by housing fraud investigators at the Royal Borough of Greenwich, and how her property portfolio came crashing down when she was jailed and forced to pay back £160,000.
In a separate case, investigators claim back a property they suspect is being sublet in one of London's busiest tourist hot spots - but they're shocked when they discover the state the property has been left in. Tax payers now face a £20,000 bill for repairs before the property can be allocated to new tenants off the housing waiting list.
While most are honest, the amount of money some social housing tenants are making by unlawfully subletting is shocking. In this episode, Michelle tells us how one rogue tenant was using a middleman to act as an 'agent' and was charging subtenants up to three times the amount she was actually paying in rent. When housing officers visit the property, they find five adults living in the lounge and two bedrooms - and not one of them was the official tenant.
Today, housing investigators are following up tip-offs and pounding the streets of one of London's most fashionable and expensive residential areas, Primrose Hill. And Michelle reveals how the vigilance of one housing officer put investigators on the trail of a tenant who has been living in France whilst unlawfully subletting her council flat. The flat has now been recovered and allocated to a single mother who's been on the waiting list for more than seven years.
In another case, cameras are with an eviction team, including bailiff and locksmith, as they move in to repossess a flat that has been unlawfully sublet. Investigators discover the official tenant is a convicted criminal and is serving a jail sentence.
Today, investigators are on the trail of a long-standing social housing tenant who's been cheating the system and lining her pockets whilst living thousands of miles away in Colombia, South America. Michelle discovers how housing association investigators closed down this lucrative subletting scam and got the property back.
And we meet a family who finally get the home of their dreams thanks to a successful breach-of-tenancy investigation. The family of three had previously been crammed into a one-bedroom flat and on the waiting list for a two-bedroom property. Now, at long last, 11-year-old Adam has a bedroom all of his own.
In a separate case, Michelle discovers how one social housing tenant moved from London's East End to America's West Coast - but instead of giving the keys to her flat back to the housing association, she gave them to a friend who then proceeded to advertise the flat for rent on a holiday home website.
Today, Michelle reveals how one tenant has been unlawfully subletting his central London flat whilst living and working in Las Vegas. Meanwhile, another council tenant, who was working as a psychic medium, didn't see it coming when housing investigators turned up at his flat unannounced and discovered it was undergoing major renovation work. He was planning to buy the flat at a knock-down price, under the Right to Buy scheme, even though he wasn't actually living there.
And in Oxford, a council tenant was unlawfully subletting his property whilst on a five-month holiday visiting his girlfriend in Thailand. He inadvertently shopped himself by complaining to the council when the people renting from him didn't pay the full amount.
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