Politics and the Alliance

by Larry Sweeney

9:39 AM, 16th December 2019
About 2 months ago

Politics and the Alliance

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Politics and the Alliance

When the landlords alliance was born just over 12 months ago, we never envisaged becoming so involved or advocating for any particular party. Our aim was simply to change the narrative. To stop the hate-fest and the stupid counterproductive attack on the PRS. Landlords are your neighbours shopkeepers, police officers, train drivers teachers etc.

The introduction of Section 24 mortgage interest relief restrictions and the spread of Selective licencing are already proving to be flawed policies. The Alliance suddenly found itself in the middle of a firestorm. Fighting back against pointless regulations and the attacks by Shelter, the housing charity which houses nobody.

We then had the elections to the European parliament. The Alliance backed the Brexit party and our judgement was on the mark. Brexit party MEP’s romped home. The Tories woke up and despite the huge errors by the Conservative party with respect to PRS legislation, we took a pragmatic approach to the parliamentary deadlock. The choice was between a Tory party misguided on policies relating to the PRS or a Marxist anti-Semitic Labour party.

The Alliance abandoned our efforts on landlord issues and stood for what was right. We apologise to our members if they feel that we were side tracked, if they feel that we have lost direction. We have not lost direction. Corbyn was the greatest threat to the economic prosperity of this great country, a threat to security and a threat to property ownership.

On that last point, that was our justification for throwing our weight behind the Conservative Party. Corbyn now leaves the stage so we will now return to fighting for a dynamic PRS.

We start 2020 with our survey which will be independently commissioned and which will expose Shelter for what it is. A Housing charity which sucks in millions of pounds, which houses nobody, but attacks those who do provide accommodation and seeks to undermine property ownership rights while paying its top honchos over £720k pa.

We will present our findings to the new government and seek to disband this organisation and direct its vast cash hoard to the homeless. Shelter, we are back and we will expose you.

The RLA and NLA are merging and we wish them well. However, the Alliance will continue to call it how it is.

We need members. Approx 94% of landlords do not belong to any association. We cannot and must not continue to bury our heads in the sand.

What have we achieved?

  • We have joined the other associations in pushing back plans to scrap S21.
  • We have advocated for court reform.
  • We have pushed back against selective licensing and have prevented approx 48 licensing prosecutions to date.
  • We currently are involved in assisting 4 landlords facing prosecutions by 4 separate authorities and will comment further on this in due course.

Finally to all Property118 readers a happy Christmas and a prosperous new year.

Click here to join the Alliance



Comments

The Forever Tenant

10:14 AM, 16th December 2019
About 2 months ago

If you are going to go to all out war with Shelter, you are going to have to do it very carefully as the optics could prove to be costly for how people consider all landlords.

Although thoroughly disliked by landlords all over, they are however loved by tenants. And they have given good advice to those tenants that have lived in a property with some sort of rogue landlord or in unacceptable conditions.

If you remove that helpline, you could see a tremendous amount of backlash against landlords where the public will see you as only acting in your own interests, however honourable your intentions may be.

My thought would be is that if you want to get rid of Shelter, you must first eliminate the reason they exist.

Luke P

11:04 AM, 16th December 2019
About 2 months ago

Reply to the comment left by The Forever Tenant at 16/12/2019 - 10:14
Would you advocate they change their name, Forever Tenant?

Imagine a charity called ‘Feed the Homeless’. Almost all donations are from people thinking they do indeed feed the homeless. When actually all they do is provide a ‘helpline’ directing the hungry homeless to the nearest McDonald’s. Do you think they would receive anywhere near the number of donations if that truth were widely understood? An all whilst paying their Directors an ungodly sum?

This is what Shelter are to homelessness and no matter what the current view, should be exposed for what they are.

Collect money and provide a helpline. But do not hoodwink you’re supporters.

The Forever Tenant

11:37 AM, 16th December 2019
About 2 months ago

I would be happy if they changed their name to "Shelter Advice".

But to use your analogy, their services would be for someone who is already at McDonalds, ordered and paid for a Big Mac but the burger they receive is a rancid mess and now they want to know how to get what they ordered.

There are many charities out there that only provide advice for the money they take in but yet its not directly in their name.

I get why Landlords dislike them. They keep the bad tenants in your properties far longer than you want them there. They find loopholes in the system to keep a person in a home. It sucks.

I'm not saying they are perfect, but they are necessary. Until all the rogue Landlords are gone, their advice is required.

I'm also concerned about the optics of trying to go after an organisation that is used by the less well off and how it would look if destroyed by the "Rich Greedy Landlords". The press would have an absolute field day and Landlords would take another step down on the social respect ladder.

Larry Sweeney

11:47 AM, 16th December 2019
About 2 months ago

To Forever tenant. Firstly all responsible landlords will sympathise with you if you have suffered as a result of the minority of bad landlords. Shelter are the problem not the solution. Shelter frustrate the court process thus delaying landlords evicting rent defaulters and asb tenants who make others lives miserable. These tenants are eventually binned anyway and all shelter do is to delay the inevitable while costing landlords money they can ill afford to lose and forcing them in many cases to default on mortgages. Shelter are a £60m organisation. Imagine if that cash was directed to front line housing services instead of going into the pockets of Shelter lawyers. The Head Honchos at shelter pocket £720k pa. That would purchase over 10 terraces every year in northern towns which could be used to provide accomodation. Shelters £60m could be put to real use. Instead we have a quasi political set up which mouths off constantly promoting the 'rogue landlord narrative' .Shelter need this narrative to keep sucking cash from Government, local authorities and the public. Shelter promote discord between landlords and tenants. Most Landlords just like most tenants are not rogues. Enough of Shelter. There is a better way to address the homeless problem and one thing for sure, Shelter are not part of the solution. We call upon every landlord nationwide to write to their MP and call for Shelter to be disbanded. Do this now as a matter of urgency. Lets get Shelters cash directed to the needy .

Luke P

12:00 PM, 16th December 2019
About 2 months ago

Reply to the comment left by The Forever Tenant at 16/12/2019 - 11:37
But they presume guilt/believe the tenant regardless of the property or landlord. To continue the analogy, they're advising diners of Michelin starred restaurants to cause problems/do maximum damage to the celebrity owner and Head Chef over an issue they are clearly not correct about...even if there is a (temporary) technicality that allows them to gain the upper hand. If there's a way to frustrate the process, even without establishing any facts, Shelter will. And that's what is wrong with them. Merely by being a landlord, you're wrong and deserve all you get.

Let's just take this to a level of absurdity. Let's say Shelter had the power to seize a property of what they consider to be a rogue landlord and hand it to the wronged tenant. Almost all of my tenants would, even in a mortgage-free property, not be able to maintain or upkeep the building, nor insure it. They'd stop receiving housing benefit and as an owner-occupier be outside the scope for a lot of assistance that tenants can be eligible for. The properties would be run down in a matter of a few years.

I think tenants have this view that, out of nothing more than courtesy, a landlord should (at very least) be renovating their kitchen every five years or so. Even including them in the process as to deciding which cabinets and worktop they want. There should be an annual decorating programme and a weekly grass-cutting service too whilst they're at it. Genuine repair and safety aside, it's should be a case of 'over to you tenant'. Very much like commercial leases. Very much like the German (and many other country's) models. Four walls & a roof for an amount of money.

Kathy Evans

12:05 PM, 16th December 2019
About 2 months ago

Reply to the comment left by The Forever Tenant at 16/12/2019 - 10:14
I don't see that the advice Shelter give is any better or different from that given by CAB. And both Crisis and the Salvation Army do a much better job of helping the homeless. I think if more people knew that Shelter didn't actually provide any Shelter and the advice they give is freely available elsewhere, opinions and allegiances might change

Kathy Evans

12:08 PM, 16th December 2019
About 2 months ago

Reply to the comment left by The Forever Tenant at 16/12/2019 - 11:37
No, "the burger they receive is a rancid mess and now they want to know how to get what they ordered." is a matter for local trading standards and environmental health already paid for by Council tax - no need for any private donations or companies

Luke P

12:08 PM, 16th December 2019
About 2 months ago

It's also unusual for any tenant to be clear on what Shelter don't do (even if they knew they provided a helpline). Are you perhaps a Shelter employee?

The Forever Tenant

12:18 PM, 16th December 2019
About 2 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Luke P at 16/12/2019 - 12:08
I'm in no way connected to Shelter. Never even spoken to them. Donated some old clothes to one of their charity shops, but that's about it. I've never hidden who I am on here, I am completely open and honest and give my views as I see them. If there is anything you want to know about me, just ask.

I do understand everyone's feelings about them and I agree that changes need to be made. I'm just concerned that by trying to completely disband a well known organisation, you could be setting yourselves up for further derision down the line.

Chris Daniel

12:50 PM, 16th December 2019
About 2 months ago

Well-known organisation - yes - but well understood, I think not.
Shelter have no morals, if a Tenant ask them for help because their being evicted for not paying the rent, Shelter will use its massively public ( and Govt. - I'd Question that ) funded resources to look for a loop-hole.
That's not proving food or accommodation like the other genuine Housing charities do, which I'd like to point out, a number of Landlords support.
None of the 'good' a landlord does is seen or reported upon. The statistics themselves will show the comparatively miniscule scale of problem housing - Landlords. - less than a handful of Rogue Landlord orders issued.

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