Landlord faces court for ‘awful invasion of privacy’
A COAST landlord has faced court for what a magistrate described as an "awful invasion of privacy".
M & K Hatfull Homes was convicted of unlawful entry of a premises for letting themselves into a tenant's home on August 25 without giving the required notice.
The Residential Tenancies Authority senior legal officer Susan Bolton said the tenant was informed by a neighbour of what had happened while they weren't home.
"The landlord had contacted the tenant via phone and the tenant had not consented to the entry," Ms Bolton said.
Magistrate Matthew McLaughlin said unless a tenant agreed, a landlord was required to give seven days' notice before entering a home.
"So he must have let himself in with his own keys, that's an awful invasion of privacy," Mr McLaughlin said.
"Not even saying 'we're coming tomorrow'.
"She could have any sort of embarrassing things lying around or private things."
Ms Bolton said the tenant was about to move out of the property.
Company director Mark Hatfull didn't appear at Maroochydore Magistrates Court on Thursday after he contested a penalty infringement notice issued in June.
"Mr Hatfull did make admissions in an email to say he had entered the property," Ms Bolton said.
She said these matters were not often prosecuted in court.
"The RTA is trying to enforce our powers to ensure that this behaviour doesn't occur on a regular basis," she said.
M & K Hatfull Homes was fined $1305.50 and the conviction wasn't recorded.
"I remember having a very nosy landlord myself at one stage who used to send around her an to come and have an inspection whenever he felt like it and we had a disagreement at the front door one day about that," Mr McLaughlin said.
"I would like to have seen this happen to my landlord back in the day."