MORE than 30 people are set to be evicted next week after a deal between the council and a property company fell through.
A total of 37 people, including healthcare professionals, teachers, a pregnant woman and community workers, are believed to be left homeless at Knoll House in Ingram Crescent, Hove, next Tuesday after the community canceled Oaksure Property Services 28 days in advance.
However, residents say they have not been served with eviction notices.
The Knoll House operated as a rehabilitation center until mid-2019 and is due to be demolished next August to allow assisted living accommodation to be built on the site.
It is understood that since late 2020 the Council has appointed Oaksure to provide security in the form of 37 “property managers” in 32 rooms on site, paying together around £16,000 a month.
However, a safety inspection led the council to believe improvements were needed to reach reasonable standards and decided to give Oaksure a four-week notice period.
Councilors Robert Nemeth and Garry Peltzer Dunn have called on the council to intervene urgently to grant residents a stay of eviction, break down the costs associated with eviction and pledge to explore options to keep the guardianship arrangement temporarily internal or with an alternative to manage guardianship providers.
Cllr Nemeth said: “Cllr Peltzer Dunn and I wholeheartedly support our residents against the threat of eviction which would be both enormously costly and immoral.
“This modern building is to be used and the rents collected until the last possible moment.
“There is absolutely no reason to make these people homeless now so that a building can stand empty.”
Cllr Nemeth and Cllr Peltzer Dunn joined other Conservative councilors and tenants in a protest outside Hove Town Hall before a council meeting to demand action to save them from eviction.
A spokesman for Brighton and Hove City Council said the Wardens are Oaksure licensees, are not tenants and pay no rent to the council.
He said: “Our contract with Oaksure allows either party to terminate the agreement on 28 days’ notice.
“A recent inspection by our environmental health team revealed that conditions at Knoll House needed improvement, particularly in relation to fire safety.
“We are discussing fire safety measures with Oaksure and are asking for assurances that any guards placed in the building by this contractor are safe and aware of their responsibilities.
“We understand that the guardians living in the home are in a difficult situation.
“Our housing team visited the program to provide advice on housing options and to assess people’s needs.
“Our team has identified several inmates who may be at risk. Temporary accommodation will be made available to these persons through the usual channels if they are unable to find alternative accommodation prior to their departure.
“We’ve also made it clear that we can help with deposits or pre-rentals if that’s an obstacle to finding alternative accommodation of your own.”
Oaksure Property Services has been contacted for comment.
https://www.theargus.co.uk/news/20299006.hove-residents-distraught-eviction-without-notice-looms/?ref=rss Hove residents are distraught as eviction threatens “without notice”.