Four Greenwich landlords have been fined a total of £40,000 for illegally renting unlicensed houses to groups of separate tenants.

The four rogue landlords have each had to cough up £10,000 after being caught ignoring the rules by Greenwich Council who say they are actively identifying properties that are unlicensed and taking enforcement action.

The houses were being let out as multiple occupation (HMO) properties, which are those rented by at least three people who are not from one household, but share things like kitchens and bathrooms.

It is a criminal offence to let out a HMO in Greenwich without a license for the property, and the council were able to identify these four rogue landlords following complaints.

"Most of our landlords are following the rules, but for those that aren’t, we encourage you to come forward and license your property before you are caught and risk being fined up to £30,000,” said Jackie Smith, the council's cabinet member for community safety and integrated enforcement.

“Every single person in our borough deserves good quality accommodation and our licensing enforcement is instrumental in ensuring that landlords maintain high standards for their tenants."

The unlicensed properties caught by the council include one two-bedroom HMO in Plumstead which was being rented to four separate tenants.

Also above capacity was a five-bedroom HMO in Charlton, which the landlord was letting out to seven separate tenants.

The other two landlords were renting three bedroom HMOs to three tenants in Woolwich and Charlton, with all the houses including shared bathrooms and kitchens.

The council says its licensing requirement protects tenants by ensuring landlords are held legally responsible for meeting certain standards, such as fire and general safety, as well as ensuring the property is in good condition.

They say are currently is actively identifying properties that are unlicensed in the borough and taking enforcement action against rogue landlords.

If you think a HMO in the Royal Borough of Greenwich is in disrepair, poorly managed or might not have a licence, then you can report this to the Council online: