LANDLORDS – You Were Warned!

LANDLORDS – You Were Warned!

18:50 PM, 21st November 2014, About 10 years ago 56

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On 30th October this year I wrote a blog entitled “Is your MP a landlords champion?” you can read it HERE

I asked all Property118 members to send a letter similar to mine to their MP and gave you a link to make it very easy to find your MP’s contact details using just your postcode.

Did you do so?

If not we could be in trouble!

Please see the latest from Shelter below.

Could this be the end of section 21 notices?

If it is, we can probably kiss goodbye to buy to let mortgages as we know them too.

My MP hasn’t even bothered to respond, he is known to support Shelter 🙁 I warned you



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Monty Bodkin

21:02 PM, 28th November 2014, About 10 years ago

It wasn't supported, it isn't happening.

Mark Alexander - Founder of Property118

9:43 AM, 29th November 2014, About 10 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Monty Bodkin" at "28/11/2014 - 21:02":

That's my understanding too. 100 votes were needed to continue the discussion but only 60 votes were cast.

Please correct me if I'm wrong.

Michael Barnes

11:28 AM, 29th November 2014, About 10 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Mark Alexander" at "29/11/2014 - 09:43":

You are wrong.

The vote that was taken was to put the Bill to a vote (i.e. to end the debate).
That vote was 60 in favour 0 against.
However, there needed to be at least 100 MPs voting for the result to be valid.

As the vote failed, the debate continued and ran out of time.
It was then scheduled to continue next Friday.

It aint over yet.

Michael Barnes

11:16 AM, 30th November 2014, About 10 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Rosalind " at "28/11/2014 - 18:35":

I was in the middle of replying with a hypothetical scenario yesterday (of a criminal thug investing in poor quality housing and getting in tenants who need somewhere, anywhere, to live and his tenants being intimidated by his reputation, and such a person having little incentive to improve his property, and coming from an environment where revenge is second nature in order to maintain reputation) when my wife said 'have a look at this'.

'This' was a Facebook post by one of her friends, who has 6-month old twins.

The initial post (late Thursday evening 27th) said "Would anyone else be worried if they had this in the room where their babies slept? I'm not sure if I'm over reacting but rang the agent only to be told if I don't like it I should move out. Not quite sure what to do????", followed by three pictures of mould on walls and ceilings.

This was followed by various supportive posts from friends and then (late Friday evening 28th) a post saying "Hand delivered today" and a photo of a letter accompanying a S21 notice for posession after 31 January saying
"Please find enclosed a section 21(b) Notice requiring the termination of the tenancy at the end of the fixed/initial period. We are carrying out the landlord's instructions in this respect. We have been managing this property for several years and there have been no previous incidence of mould. Mould is cause by the warm air settling onto a cooler surface and is nearly always as a result of poor ventilation. this is nearly always the case with bathrooms in modern homes. The solution is so simple it almost beggars belief. Open the windows to allow the warm air to escape, how else does one think the warm air is going to exit the room?

We would appreciate it if you would remove your ill informed Facebook comment. I wonder how our tenants would react if we posted incorrect, ill informed and embarrassing comments about them everytime they wanted a light bulb changed were late with their rent, broke something, failed to open a window and then were surprised they were suffering from condensation?

I don't want this thread to be diverted into a discussion of this particular case (agent should at least have said 'let's have a look to see what is causing the problem'; tenant has already contacted Environmental Health based on initial response; I am supporting her with my knowledge gleaned from Property118; I have advised her to talk to Citizens Advice and Shelter), but wish to make the points

Retaliatory evictions do occur
The letter from the agent shows that this is a revenge eviction (the fixed term actually ends 31 December)
I have never made a retaliatory eviction (because I am not stupid)
This is the first case of retaliatory eviction of which I have direct knowledge
Maybe a significant part of the problem is poor agents who see an opportunity to make more money from 'generating' a new tenancy
We as decent landlords find it hard to see things from the view point of bad landlords and from the view point of tenants who are forced into the clutches of bad landlords (or who stumble there accidentally)

We need to fight for retaliatory eviction laws that are fair to decent landlords (because laws will come: all major parties support the principle, as do I)

We need to fight for retaliatory eviction laws that are fair to decent landlords (because laws will come: all major parties support the principle, as do I)

Dr Rosalind Beck

13:26 PM, 30th November 2014, About 10 years ago

This is one case. As you say, you have never come across it before and neither have I, either regarding myself or any other landlords I know or have heard about. It is a red herring. I certainly won't be fighting against something I consider to be a very rare occurrence, possibly happening somewhere or other; and, in so doing, punishing good landlords by forcing them to provide rent-free accommodation across the board to all sorts, but most likely to tenants from hell who will know how to use the law to their advantage (aided by organisations such as Shelter).
I also think the agent and landlord in the above scenario have a strong argument. Both in terms of the possibility/probability that the tenant caused the problem and in terms of their publicising it on social media. If I was the tenant, moreover, I wouldn't have moved into a house where I could see such mould during my viewing. And if it wasn't there then, when and how did the mould form? Also, I would vote with my feet and move out if I weren't happy with my accommodation. I wonder if the tenant will now use this as an excuse not to pay the rent, and if so, I wonder if they will publicise that fact too...
Finally, if such a law is deemed to be inevitable - which I also dispute, as I don't believe in such fatalism - then I would be aiming to get a clause in regarding rent arrears, so that people cannot live rent-free just because they've made a spurious complaint.

Monty Bodkin

15:58 PM, 1st December 2014, About 10 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Michael Barnes" at "29/11/2014 - 11:28":

It is over in the sense that this bill is not going to happen.

It is 'scheduled' to continue on Friday but see where it is listed;!/calendar/Commons/MainChamber/2014/12/5/events.html

Michael Barnes

11:04 AM, 2nd December 2014, About 10 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Monty Bodkin" at "01/12/2014 - 15:58":

You're right, of course. It is extremely unlikely, but not impossible.

I look at things with the view of 'what could go wrong', so until it is certain that it is dead we should still worry (give it til the end of january).

However, It will be back. The major parties support the aims and will be likely to do something after the next election.

We can rest, but not stop the fight.

Michael Barnes

11:35 AM, 2nd December 2014, About 10 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Rosalind " at "30/11/2014 - 13:26":

I find it sad that without knowing anything about someone other than (in summary) she notified the agent of an issue (which her agreement required her to do) expecting to get help and guidance, and when that help was not forthcoming she sought help from her friends, YOU jump to the conclusion that she is probably a scumbag tenant.

I spoke to the agent that I use (tenant find only), and they said that their first action would be to explain about causes of mould and then go to look to see if it is a tenant or landlord problem, and then work with the tenant to find a resolution. That is what I would expect from an agent and is what I do

In my experience most tenants are decent but many still fear revenge evictions so don't mention problems. I had a tenant tell me at check out (her decision to leave) after 3 years in a flat "it is a bit cold in the bathroom in the winter"; I hadn't notice that there was no heating in there when I bought the place, and I put in heating before the next let.

Dr Rosalind Beck

15:42 PM, 2nd December 2014, About 10 years ago

And I find it sad that the newspapers only ever report on 'rogue landlords' and 'poor tenants/victims of awful landlords.' I also am not willing to simply believe a tenant's account of events without checking the other side of the argument. I can cite hundreds of stories from dozens of dreadful tenants from hell - indeed, I have written several books on the theme, but no journalist has ever asked me to tell them about my experiences for a newspaper report. For every 'rogue landlord' I honestly believe there are dozens if not hundreds of tenants from hell, and yet the tenants' point of view always seems to take precedence. Also, as this is a site intended for landlords I don't want to be put in the position of having to 'defend' landlords continually to someone who wants to put the tenants' point of view constantly. We get enough of that point of view from all directions.

Monty Bodkin

17:19 PM, 4th December 2014, About 9 years ago

The Tenancies (Reform) Bill isn't happening but the contents of it may be. They have been cut and pasted today and tabled for amendment into the Deregulation Bill;

A couple of minor tweaks to it but it still has the same obvious flaw;
Rogue tenants will use it to delay eviction indefinitely.

Don't know if it will succeed but you've got to admire their cunning.

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