A crackdown on housing fraud has saved the council £850,000 in the last financial year and freed up homes for residents in need.

Enfield Council recovered 59 properties from people who had no right to reside in them during 2017-18, with several cases still under investigation.

The crackdown means the council can spend significantly less on housing families in temporary accommodation.

Enfield Council’s cabinet member for housing Cllr Dino Lemonides said: “We don’t want people to make a profit by lying about their entitlement to a Council property and preventing a family in genuine need from being given a home.

“This authority takes housing fraud very seriously and we will fully investigate every report of illegal subletting and tenancies obtained by deception.

“It is completely unfair that residents in desperate need of housing cannot have a home because unscrupulous individuals want to make a fast buck.”

Like many other parts of London, Enfield has a shortage of council homes and a large number of people waiting for more suitable accommodation.

The council aims to ensure only people who are entitled to housing in the borough are given council tenancies.

In the most serious cases, property fraudsters who illegally sublet their property or who lie to get a tenancy face a prison sentence.

Residents can confidentially report housing fraud at www.enfield.gov.uk, by emailing fraud.team@enfield.gov.uk or by calling the team on 020 8379 1000.