Posts with tag: letting agents

Landlord Action to Feature in Third Series of Nightmare Tenants, Slum Landlords

Published On: September 27, 2016 at 9:15 am


Categories: Landlord News

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Landlord Action to Feature in Third Series of Nightmare Tenants, Slum Landlords

Landlord Action to Feature in Third Series of Nightmare Tenants, Slum Landlords

Following the success of the first two series, tenant eviction firm Landlord Action has announced that it will feature in the 12-part third series of Nightmare Tenants, Slum Landlords on Channel 5.

As rents continue to spiral, due to continuing pressure on housing stock, the observational documentary will continue to follow the conflicts between landlords and tenants. Previous episodes have uncovered shocking subletting scams, rent arrears cases and uninhabitable conditions. The third series aims to reveal even more industry issues that affect all those in the lettings sector.

The Founder of Landlord Action, Paul Shamplina, says: “Working closely with those landlords that have found themselves in extremely distressing situations, we will once again be exposing the most prevalent landlord/tenant issues. These include subletting scams, in particular, those relating to the holiday rental market, retaliation eviction and more shocking rent arrears cases.”

However, Landlord Action also notes that it is not just battles between landlords and tenants that plague the private rental sector. The firm aims to uncover the rogue letting agents that rip off their clients.

Throughout more than 160 hours of filming, Landlord Action will name and shame those unscrupulous letting agents that withhold rent from landlords and deposits from tenants.

Shamplina comments: “Letting or renting a property can be a complex business and one that is not without risk. For this reason, it is important that we expose the rogue letting agent operators who are tarnishing the reputation of those good, trustworthy agents. The industry will be a better place once Client Money Protection is mandatory for all letting agents, ensuring landlords’ rent and tenants’ deposits are protected.”

He adds: “Those landlords that have kindly agreed to share their story will help educate and prevent others from making the same mistakes.”

The third series of Nightmare Tenants, Slum Landlords is due to air from February 2017.

Thousands of landlords still haven’t signed up to Rent Smart Wales

Published On: September 15, 2016 at 10:43 am


Categories: Landlord News

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Concerning new figures have revealed that thousands of landlords in Wales have not yet signed up for Rent Smart Wales. This is despite there being less than two months remaining before the scheme becomes a mandatory requirement.

Rent Smart Wales

Rent Smart Wales is a registration and licensing system in Wales, which went live last year. The scheme requires all landlords and letting agents to register their properties and undergo training to obtain a licence should they wish to self-manage their investment.

Landlords and letting agents in Wales have been given a deadline of 23rd November in which to comply with the new legislation. After then, it becomes a criminal offence to let or manage a property without the sufficient licence.

In particular, landlords in Swansea are causing concern, with extremely low numbers signed up to the scheme.

A Freedom of Information request has revealed that only 1,565 landlords in Swansea had already registered with Rent Smart Wales at the end of August. This is only just over a fifth of the total number of landlords required to do so.


The scheme is designed to improve the quality of rental accommodation in Wales, through both providing training courses and giving local councils a better understanding of where properties are situated.

However, Rent Smart Wales estimates that 8.3% of homes in Swansea are privately rented. This amounts to around 7,500 eligible properties in the city.

Welsh Liberal Democrat politician, Peter Black, noted: ‘with the registration period almost over, the failure to enlist the vast majority of landlords into this compulsory scheme has put it into crisis mode.’[1]

‘Unless there is a surge of registrations in the final two months then it will become impossible to administer this scheme effectively. Swansea tenants will miss out on the protections offered by the legislation and those living near badly managed privately rented properties will have fewer options to deal with problems.’[1]

‘This is not Swansea Council’s fault. This scheme is being administered by Cardiff Council on behalf of the Welsh Government. However, ministers are trying to do it on the cheap. They have not given sufficient resources to Rent Smart Wales to promote the scheme and councils do not have funds to chase those who do not register,’ he continued.[1]

Thousands of landlords still haven't signed up to Rent Smart Wales

Thousands of landlords still haven’t signed up to Rent Smart Wales


According to a Welsh Government spokesperson, more than 19,000 private landlords in Wales have signed up to the scheme. In addition, more funding has been made available to local authorities to enforce the scheme.

The spokesperson said, ‘after just nine months, more than 19,000 private landlords have registered and more than 33,000 have taken the first step and opened accounts on the scheme. This compares with just 3,000 or so registered with the previous voluntary scheme.’[1]

‘We are committed to improving the arrangements for people who rent their home from private landlords and the benefits of Rent Smart Wales are already emerging-96% of those who have completed the relevant training have said it will make them a better landlord.’[1]



Rogue Landlord and Letting Agents Fined £20k for Failing to License Property

Published On: September 15, 2016 at 8:31 am


Categories: Landlord News

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A rogue landlord and letting agents have been fined over £20,000 and given criminal records for failing to license his property in Willesden and ignoring tenants’ pleas for essential repairs.

The rogue landlord had left the property in a terrible state of repair

The rogue landlord had left the property in a terrible state of repair

Despite repeated warnings from Brent Council’s Private Housing Services officers, Khalid Latif and his letting agents PMC Management and Collections did not act upon the notices to bring the property on Chandos Road in Willesden Green up to a licensable standard.

The six tenants that lived at the four-bedroom property approached the council to complain about the poor living conditions at the house, which included no hot water or central heating, rotten and damp fittings and disregard of basic fire safety measures.

Watford-based Mr. Latif, who has owned the run-down property since 2000, was earning more than £2,500 per month in rent from the home.

Brent Magistrates’ Court was told that Brent Council had repeatedly contacted both Mr. Latif and PMC Management and Collections over an eight-month period and visited the property on several occasions, finding that no repairs had been undertaken.

Both the rogue landlord and letting agents were convicted of failing to license the property. The court also considered the hazards found in the property to be aggravated, and fined both Mr. Latif and PMC Management and Collections £9,500, with another £695 each in costs and £120 each in a victim surcharge – a total of £20,630.

Councillor Harbi Farah, Brent Council’s Lead Member for Housing, comments on the case: “Unlicensed, unsafe properties like this are a danger to the entire community and it is unacceptable that anyone in London should have to rent a property that lacks basic facilities like hot water.

“The vast majority of landlords and letting agents in Brent are honest and law abiding, but we take a zero tolerance approach to the minority who think they can treat their tenants like this.”

She adds: “Our licensing scheme ensures that landlords maintain their rental properties to a decent standard. If you’re a landlord, failure to license your property could result in an unlimited fine and a criminal record.”

The majority of private landlords in Brent are legally required to obtain a license from the council. Find out more here and avoid being named and shamed as a rogue landlord!

AIIC Calls for Landlords and Letting Agents to Respond to CMP Consultation

Published On: September 12, 2016 at 10:41 am


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The Association of Independent Inventory Clerks (AIIC) has called on landlords and letting agents to respond to the Government’s consultation on mandatory Client Money Protection (CMP).

AIIC Calls for Landlords and Letting Agents to Respond to CMP Consultation

AIIC Calls for Landlords and Letting Agents to Respond to CMP Consultation

The new Housing Minister, Gavin Barwell, launched the consultation at the end of August. Those that wish to respond to the consultation have until Monday 3rd October to do so.

CMP schemes protect rent and deposits held by letting agents, giving their clients peace of mind and the opportunity to recover funds, should they go missing.

In his open letter that launched the consultation, Barwell quoted industry estimates that letting agents hold around £3 billion worth of landlords’ and tenants’ money.

Earlier in the year, SAFEagent reported that one in five landlords and tenants are not protected by CMP.

A number of influential industry bodies, including the Association of Residential Letting Agents, the National Approved Letting Scheme and the Residential Landlords Association, have shown their support for the Government’s review of mandatory CMP, and now the AIIC is backing the consultation.

The Chair of the AIIC, Patricia Barber, believes that mandatory CMP would be a step in the right direction for the lettings industry.

She says: “The majority of letting agents are trustworthy and reliable, but that doesn’t mean that they don’t need to offer CMP. As average rents and deposits continue to rise, it’s only fair that landlords and tenants are provided with the peace of mind that their money is protected.

“One of the Government’s concerns is that law-abiding and conscientious agents shouldn’t have to pay the additional subscription to be a member of a CMP scheme. However, as John Midgley of SAFEagent pointed out, it’s only a small cost per year and one that the vast majority of customer-focused letting agents would be happy to set aside.”

She continues: “What’s more, the Government itself quotes figures which suggest that up to 80% of agents are already offering CMP to their clients. This perhaps shows that the small percentage who don’t may need to be the ones forced to join a scheme through making it mandatory.

“It’s pleasing that the Government is reviewing whether CMP should be compulsory, and we hope that as many passionate agents and landlords as possible contribute their insight to the outstanding consultation.”

The consultation is here:

Property Redress Scheme is Forced to Expel Rogue Letting Agent

Published On: September 8, 2016 at 9:07 am


Categories: Property News

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Property Redress Scheme is Forced to Expel Rogue Letting Agent

Property Redress Scheme is Forced to Expel Rogue Letting Agent

The Property Redress Scheme (PRS) has been forced to expel a rogue letting agent after it failed to pay money owed to its clients.

Despite signing up its 5,000th member last month, the PRS has now decided that Carter Stones Limited, of 1A Connaught Road, Ilford, must be expelled.

The PRS reports that the letting agent failed to make awards totalling £15,406 to four complainants.

After receiving a number of complaints from both landlords and tenants, the PRS made the decision to expel Carter Stones. All of the complaints received were similar in nature, relating to delays and/or failure in paying money and poor or non-existent service.

Sean Hooker, of the PRS, comments: “Failure to pay an award, however large or small, is a serious breach of our terms of reference. Agents must not assume that the complaint will go away if they remain silent and refuse to engage with the scheme.”

Evictions specialist Paul Shamplina, who is also a member of the advisory panel of the PRS, also says: “Having been instructed by complainants who have not had their complaints resolved, I was shocked to discover Carter Stones are still trading out of the same premises with a slightly different name – Carter Stones Practical Living. I will shortly be undertaking a campaign to raise awareness of the issue of enforcement action against rogue agents.”

One landlord that previously dealt with Carter Stones and filed a complaint against them with the PRS feels gratified that the agent has been expelled: “They have made a complete mess of the management of my property, purposefully, it seems, illegally subletting, not registering rent security deposits, and defrauding me out of £8,928 rent, £745 fees/charges and security deposit.”

Have you ever dealt with a rogue letting agent? Remember to make complaints to any scheme you use.

Landlords, Save Up to £1,600 a Year with New Digital Management Agency

Published On: September 2, 2016 at 9:16 am


Categories: Landlord News

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Landlords, did you know that a new digital management agency has now launched, which will help you save up to £1,600 a year in fees? uses technology to automate the marketing, administration and maintenance of its rental properties, as well as supplying 24/7 support from experienced property professionals.

So how does the new management agency work?

Free marketing

No Agent offers free advertising on the UK’s major property portals (Rightmove, Zoopla, etc.), granting access to a much wider audience without using local letting agents.

No extra fees

A simple fee structure means that landlords are charged just £39 per month for London properties and £29 a month outside of the capital. Landlords and tenants face no additional fees. Furthermore, landlords aren’t tied into a long-term contract and can cancel at any time.

Landlords, Save Up to £1,600 a Year with New Digital Management Agency

Landlords, Save Up to £1,600 a Year with New Digital Management Agency

No paperwork 

Landlords can manage their properties using a real-time dashboard. All administration is handled online or through No Agent’s 24-hour call centre, including viewings, reference and credit checks, contracts, check-in, compliance reminders, maintenance and deposit/rent collection.

Tenants can also use the online system to organise viewings and manage application documents, while also avoiding additional agency fees.

Easy payments

No Agent has introduced direct debit payments, allowing landlords to switch from using standing orders.

Expert advice

Landlords will have instant access to property managers, with an average of five years’ experience, and a legal helpline.

The firm has also announced that veteran property technologist Gillian Kent has joined as Chairman. Her previous roles include CEO of, which was sold to Zoopla in 2009 and integrated into its platform, and Managing Director of MSN UK.

Kent says: “Despite the impact of the digital revolution, property services haven’t fundamentally changed. No Agent is the only service that completely automates a range of essential tasks, such as marketing, bookings, reference checks, maintenance and compliance.

“Strategically, what we’re doing is empowering landlords to fully manage all aspects of the letting of their property, and save money as a direct result. Agencies currently earn £115m a year in fees for doing these sorts of tasks.”

By using technology throughout the lettings process, No Agent can offer industry-leading prices and access to round-the-clock support. This process saves money, time and increases transparency.

“The average monthly rent outside of London is now £779,” Kent points out. “So when you add on standard agency charges like a month’s rent, together with monthly management fees of up to 15%, the first year cost for a landlord is close to £2,000.”

She continues: “By contrast, using No Agent would save them just shy of £1,600. Tenants will also be better off, as we don’t charge for services like drawing up tenancy agreements and credit checks. However, letting agencies now typically charge tenants £337 in fees – many in London are forced to pay over £400.”