This guest post is bought to you by the rubbish removal company Junk Hunters. Their experiences dealing with properties that have been used by tenants as cannabis farms will give landlords valuable insights into things they should be looking out for in their rental properties…
It’s no secret that illegal cannabis farms are on the rise across the UK. They’ve been discovered in various locales around the country, including warehouses, farms, and buried shipping containers. As a landlord, hearing about the number of cannabis factories discovered each day in these types of locations may not have caught your attention before. But more and more of these factories are found in residential homes – including rental properties in London.
Why London Landlords Should Be Worried
London landlords should sit up and take heed as the numbers are staggering. An illegal cannabis farm is found every two days in London. Many are found in South London, with the borough of Croydon having the most. By the latest count, Croydon had 30 such cannabis farms. Across London, hundreds of these cannabis factories exist.
The London rubbish removal company Junk Hunters recently cleared out a house that had been converted into a cannabis factory. It was the third house they’ve cleaned out that was used to grow cannabis. Their most recent client was a landlord whose rental house in Northwest London had been the site of cannabis production. The landlord wasn’t aware his tenants were growing cannabis until he received a call from the metropolitan police. As cannabis remains illegal in the UK, houses like these continue to pop up.
Landlord’s Northwest London House Turned into a Cannabis Farm Without His Knowledge
The landlord that rubbish clearance agency Junk Hunters worked with didn’t know his tenants were running a cannabis farm. He’d worked with an estate agent when initially renting the house out to the two tenants from Hong Kong. At first, there were no complaints. The landlord received his money on time and didn’t hear of any problems.
Then, after 6 months, the landlord was notified by police that his house had been discovered as a cannabis farm. The police had raided it and destroyed the cannabis. When they handed the house back over to the landlord, it was halfway deteriorated. The landlord’s only indication that something was wrong was the phone call from the police. And that was his only indication. By then, the damage was already done.
London House Clearance Agency Cleans Up the Former Cannabis Farm
The landlord called Junk Hunters to clean up as much of the house as they could. Rubbish littered the house. It included pots used for planting the cannabis, soil, the plastic that covered the windows and ventilation systems, broken furniture, hundreds of empty plant food containers, extractor fans and motors installed in the loft, and various other items. Junk Hunters’ crew of 4 took 10 hours to clear out everything, with 5 loads of rubbish total.
Junk Hunters were aware that the landlord they were working with would still face extensive repairs on his house after they left. They aimed to clean out absolutely everything, making the landlord’s job a little easier. He was thankful for the thorough job they did, admitting that they lightened his burden quite a bit.
Junk Hunters: London Landlords Should Be Wary
As this landlord is the third Junk Hunters have worked with to clean out a former cannabis farm, they urge landlords to be cautious. Landlords should vet their tenants before signing the rental agreement, and try to keep an eye on their property every so often after the tenants move in. Unfortunately, you can never be too careful.
Cannabis is still illegal in the UK. Selling, growing, distributing, and possessing cannabis can get you 5 years in prison. Supplying and producing can earn you 14 years. Landlords who don’t collaborate with their tenants’ cannabis farming operations and who aren’t even aware, like the landlord that Junk Hunters worked with, shouldn’t face legal implications. The financial ramifications are severe, though, as repairs to rental properties could be substantial.
Working with a House Clearance Agency
In these situations, working with a rubbish removal agency like Junk Hunters can help speed up the cleaning and repair process. While a rubbish clearance company can’t do repairs on your property, they can come in and professionally clean out the rubbish, making sure it gets disposed of properly. After dealing with an illegal operation in a rental property, the last thing a landlord needs is fines for not recycling properly!
The Northwest London landlord who worked with Junk Hunters admitted they did a great job and would readily recommend them to any friends, family, or colleagues. Without the Junk Hunters’ help, his job would’ve been much harder.
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