Tag Archives: Rogue landlords

Enforcement not legislation – PRS Hit Squads Latest Articles, UK Property Forum for Buy to Let Landlords

There is already more than enough funding and legislation to police the Private Rented Sector.

The last thing we need is more legislation, what everybody wants is enforcement and word on the street is that we could begin to see it before the end of 2013. Ben-Reeve-Lewis

PRS Hit Squads

The authorities all know who the real criminals are and the only reason the criminals are still in business is because those holding power don’t combine resources, in fact they rarely talk to each other. Until now they have all run scared of “data sharing protocols” but when that’s put to one side expect to see some very big cases of criminal landlords being taken to task.

I have heard that PRS Hit Squads will target known criminal landlords between now and Christmas and are supported “in principle” by the likes of Mark Prisk, Boris Johnson and others who openly admit to not being fans of the licensing model being operated in Newham. I’ve also heard that six figure funding for a trial has been agreed at ministerial level.

These “PRS Hit Squads” as I’ve labelled them will comprise of:-

  • Environmental heath
  • HMO licensing
  • Planning
  • Anti social behaviour teams
  • EDF revenue
  • Building contol
  • UKBA
  • Police

The plan is that they will share intelligence and converge on criminal landlords in a military style operation, focussing on the worst operators first of course. With their combined resources the criminals will not stand a chance. It will be like a man with a pea shooter trying to fend off the SAS 🙂

Beware the Spin Doctors!

My hope is that the PR outcome of the PRS Hit Squad successes will be positive and support the need for the model to be extended nationally. It is a very low cost model and the results should save the tax payer money as well as improving peoples lives (unless you are one of the targeted criminals of course!). The last thing the PRS needs is for the successes to be used as justification for more regulation. The spin doctors will see this as an opportunity to justify schemes such as Newham but this must not be allowed to happen.

Landlords can be victims too

Landlords are also the victims of criminals and I have seen some very sad examples of that. A recent case in the Fens involved a landlord who let his former home to a Gang-master. Unbeknown to him the unregulated Gang-master then allowed 20 immigrant farm workers to live in the property, all sleeping on mattresses on the floor. When the landlord found out he obviously wanted them out ASAP, as did the neighbours of pretty culdesac in which the landlords 4 bad detached property was located but the law stood in the way. Had the landlord been able to go to the authorities, secure in the knowledge they would fight for him, it would have been a Godsend to him. Instead, the authorities are threatening the landlord and not the Gangmaster! Clearly common sense isn’t that common.

Let’s hope the PRS Hit Squads are successful in taking down criminals and then lend a much needed helping hand to landlords who are also targeted by criminals. If common sense prevails we might just see more action and less talk. When all is said and done, more is said than done, but fingers crossed let’s hope that not the case here.

The Highland Fling

Earlier this year the Scottish Association of Landlords reported that landlord registration in Scotland has cost landlords £11.2 million in fees while the start-up Scottish Government grant for the scheme was £5.2 million. According to the results, since 2006 there have only been 40 rogue landlords identified as operating in Scotland, that’s the number of rejected applications. The cost equates to £400,000 per rogue identified!

Summary

The schemes in Newham and its copycats also show signs of being similar “White Elephants”, therefore I’m pinning my hopes on the PRS Hit Squads taking down as many criminals as possible, proving once and for all that it’s more enforcement not legislation we need. Enforcement not legislation - PRS Hit Squads


Mortgage Express Conspiracy Theory Latest Articles, UK Property Forum for Buy to Let Landlords

I would appreciate your thoughts on the following Mortgage Express conspiracy theory.

As we know, Mortgage Express is run by UK Asset Resolution who are tasked with recovering as much money as possible for the tax payer.

If UKAR were to increase tracker margins for Mortgage Express customers, to a point where most landlords were to default on their mortgages, UKAR would be in a position to appoint LPA receivers. This would not affect the number of properties in the PRS but it would mean that a centralised body, controlled by the Government, would control a huge section of the PRS. In turn, that would create jobs in the public sector, it would mean that Jo Public wouldn’t have to deal with rogue landlords and letting agents to anywhere near the same extent and it would also provide a better opportunity for recovery of tax payers funds.

Apart from landlords, can you imagine tax payers not supporting such a scenario?

As I see it, the clock is ticking and landlords only have so much time to diffuse this bomb. The success of a Class Action against West Bromwich Building Society or Bank of Ireland could prevent the above. If a test case isn’t won before the above scenario comes to pass then I’m afraid the PRS as we know it may be doomed.

Mortgage Express Conspiracy Theory

Thoughts?

EDITORS NOTE

Property118 is leading a Class Action group to fight back by taking a test case to Court if necessary to prove once and for all that amending the margin on a tracker rate mortgage is breach of contract. If you are worrying whether your mortgage lender will follow the lead of Bank of Ireland or West Brom please READ THIS and complete the form below to support this campaign.

The deadline for submission of instructions has now expired. However, it may still be possible to join the representative action subject to paying Court fees and an additional cost to cover associated administration. For details please email : carla@cotswoldbarristers.co.uk


Bad Landlords Latest Articles, UK Property Forum for Buy to Let Landlords

Bad LandlordsWhy on earth would anybody want to search Google for “Bad Landlords”?

My stepson (Ilya) bought something to my attention this evening which blew my mind. Ilya is a student at Greenwich University and is studying games development. He’s a self confessed Geek, far worse than me LOL.

Mark, he said, you know you run The GOOD Landlords Campaign?

(me) Yeah

(Ilya) Well I’ve done some research and only 260 people search Google every month to find “Good Landlords”

(me) yeah?

(Ilya) Well for a laugh I checked how many people search for “bad landlords” every month and there’s 720  searching Google for them in the UK alone!

(me) I wonder how many search for Rogue Landlord then?

(Ilya) That’s what I found a bit strange. There’s a charity in London called Shelter and they run campaigns asking tenants to report “Rogue Landlords” so I thought there would be 1,000’s but Google only report 390 monthly searches.

Now make of that what you will. I checked his source and his figures are accurate.

There is even a bad landlords list on the Tenants From Hell website where you can, of course, watch a selection of the anti landlord propaganda video’s from Shelter!

Surely you think tenants would be more interested in finding good landlords than bad landlords or rogue landlords wouldn’t you?

Am I missing something here?

The mind boggles!


E-news Summary for 22/01/2013 eNews, UK Property Forum for Buy to Let Landlords

Is rent hiking a good business model?

Is rent hiking a good business modelIt’s been a while since I wrote anything in my ‘Don’t shoot the messenger’ series. Mainly because I kept getting shot ha-ha.

But I have a tough skin.

This article is an open letter to all you P118 landlords but probably more the London crew, because it is about rent increases and London is a different animal to the rest of the UK. I see properties for rent in different parts of Britain where the rents seem reasonable.

London is off the scale though. read on

Landlord registration is costing £400,000 per rogue

Landlord registration is costing £400,000 per rogueA multi-million pound scheme introduced to crack down on rogue landlords has resulted in only 11 people being reported to the procurator fiscal in two years.

The Landlord Registration Scheme has so far cost landlords and the taxpayer nearly £18 million since 2006, figures obtained by the Scottish Conservatives have revealed.

That breakdown revealed responsible landlords have paid £11.2 million in fees, while the start-up Scottish Government grant for the scheme was £5.2 million. Annual running fees for the website since 2006 are estimated to be just under £300,000. read on

Should I purchase a dryer in a shared house ?

Should I purchase a dryer in a shared houseI have a shared house where the tenants are respectful and love this refurbished property as their home. The only thing they are requesting is proper drying facilities so they no longer need to use clothes racks or hanging stuff outside in the winter months

What do I do ?

The tenants would be happy to purchase tokens off me for its running cost if I purchased a token/coin operated timer equipment controlling a standard dryer.  read on

Readers question for building contacts and advice

Readers question for building contactsWe are a Manchester based property company and are in the process of building a small two bedroom two bathroom house, which we would like to sell or let when completed.

Where can I find authoritative information, preferably free, regarding the cost differences between :

(1) 12.5 mm dot and dab plasterboard and skim and 13 mm 2 coat wet plaster finish.

(2) 22 mm t & G flooring grade chipboard and 22 mm timber t & G boarding. read on

 

Tenancy Deposit Question from a Tenant

Questions

We have been renting a house and our landlady used a local estate agent for the process.

We are due to renew our tenancy and our landlady, after seeing all the charges for renewing to us from the estate agents, has said she was happy to do a private agreement between us. We get on very well and are good tenants.

The estate agents are now saying I can’t get my deposit back, surely if she is dispensing of their duties, I am entitled to it back? read on

Seller numbers jump by 22% and Rightmove traffic swells by 27%

Rightmove have released their House Price index for January which reveals some very interesting trends summarised below.

A copy of the full report can be downloaded by completing the form at the foot of this article. read on

Go to Latest Articles for all Property118 News:  CLICK HERE

Including in the last 5 Days:

  • Landlords investing more according to new data from ARLA
  • Ground Rents Investment Question
  • Rents rising in Scotland
  • Advertise property to let, reference tenants, guarantee rent – one package
  • NLA welcomes the launch of the Green Deal Cashback Scheme
  • Nottingham Buy to Let with three year assured 9.2% net yields
  • The Deposit Protection Service announce new pricing structure
  • Positive end to 2012 for the UK property auction market reported by EIG

Property Auctions: CLICK HERE

Dafydd Hardy Property Auction – 31/01/2013

Dafydd Hardy Property AuctionDafydd Hardy are holding a property auction on Thursday 31 January 2013 at the Anglesey Arms Hotel, Menai Bridge – 5:30PM.

To download the auction catalogue please complete the short form below. read on

Parsons Son & Basley Property Auction East Sussex – 21/02/2013

Parsons Son & Basley Property AuctionParsons Son & Basley are auctioning 10 properties at the Banqueting Suite, Hove Town Hall, Norton Road, Hove BN3 3BQ Thursday 21 February 2013 at 3pm.

To download a copy of the catalogue please complete the form below. read on

Louis Taylor Property Auction Stoke on Trent 12/02/2013

Louis Taylor Property AuctionLouis Taylor are holding a property auction consisting of 12 lots with guide prices from as little as £35,000 at 7pm on 12 February 2012.

The venue for the auction is 66 Trinity Street, Hanley, Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire ST1 5NB

To download a copy of their catalogue please complete the short form below. read on

Clive Emson Auctioneers – Property Auctions 4th to 7th February 2013

Clive Emson AuctioneersClive Emson Auctioneers are holding their first auctions of the New Year on 4th-7th February offering 116 Lots. Download their auction catalogue by completing the form below. The four auctions cover lots of land and commercial and residential properties across the whole of southern England, from Kent to Cornwall and from the Isle of Wight to the M4 corridor. read on

Athawes Son & Co National Property Auction 29.01.2012

Athawes Son & Co Property Auction 29.01.2012Download the auction catalogue for the Athawes Son & Co National Property Auction Sale.

Date: Tuesday 29th January 2013 commencing at 1pm

Venue: The Grand Connaught Rooms, 61-65 Great Queen Street, Kingsway, London WC2. read on

Nottingham Property Auction – 13th Feb 2013

Nottingham Property Auction - 13th Feb 2013HEB Chartered Surveyors are holding their first Nottingham property auction of the year on 13th February 2013.

There are 17 properties going under the hammer with guide prices from £20,000. read on


Landlord registration is costing £400,000 per rogue Landlord News, Latest Articles, Property News, UK Property Forum for Buy to Let Landlords

Landlord registration is costing £400,000 per rogueA multi-million pound scheme introduced to crack down on rogue landlords has resulted in only 11 people being reported to the procurator fiscal in two years.

The Landlord Registration Scheme has so far cost landlords and the taxpayer nearly £18 million since 2006, figures obtained by the Scottish Conservatives have revealed.

That breakdown revealed responsible landlords have paid £11.2 million in fees, while the start-up Scottish Government grant for the scheme was £5.2 million. Annual running fees for the website since 2006 are estimated to be just under £300,000. Continue reading Landlord registration is costing £400,000 per rogue


Petition to criminalise none payment of rent to landlords Landlord News, Latest Articles, Property News

e-petition to criminalise none payment of rent to landlords

e-petition to criminalise none payment of rent to landlords

Housing Charity “Crisis” report that only 1.5% of private landlords will let their properties to housing benefits claimants. This is because the risks are considered to be too great. Make it a criminal offence not to pay rent, especially if Housing Benefits have been claimed for this purpose, and improve the eviction process for none payers and this will attract further investment into the sector, particularly the need for shared accommodation for single under 35’s claiming benefits. Without these changes the housing crisis will get worse as much needed specialist developments for this type of accommodation will not be considered to be viable.

The Government say they need support from the PRS. This needs to be reciprocated if the housing crisis is to be solved.

If 1 million Europeans came to the UK today would there be more or less rogue landlords? I suggest there would be a lot more “beds in sheds” and people would be afraid to complain for fear of losing the roof over their head. Getting the laws right will incentivise investment into development of much needed PRS accommodation, particularly shared housing for single benfits claimants under the age of 35.

Link to the e-petition

Associated reading and discussion Continue reading Petition to criminalise none payment of rent to landlords


Online Profiles For Good Landlords Landlord News, Latest Articles, Property News, The GOOD Landlords Campaign

Most landlords have no online profile at all but does it matter?

Well actually I think it does, particularly for those who want to be known as Good Landlords. People like to know who they are dealing with and the simplest way to check somebody out is to do a Google Search. I’m sure some tenants check out their landlord for example. Just ask yourself, have you ever Googled a person to find out more about them? Maybe you haven’t, but I can assure you that most people have. Continue reading Online Profiles For Good Landlords


Enquiry into Private Rented Sector gives opportunity to voice opinion Landlord News, Latest Articles, Property News

An Enquiry into the Private Rented Sector by The Communities and Local Government Committee will give us all an important opportunity to voice our opinions before the 17th of January 2013.

The Enquiry is to focus on many important issues often discussed within Property118 by it’s readers:

  • The quality of private rented housing, and steps that can be taken to ensure that all housing in the sector is of an acceptable standard.
  • Levels of rent within the private rented sector – including the possibility of rent control and the interaction between housing benefit and rents.
  • Regulation of landlords, and steps that can be taken to deal with rogue landlords.
  • Regulation of letting agents, including agents’ fees and charges.
  • The regulation of houses in multiple occupation (HMOs), including the operation of discretionary licensing schemes imposed by a local authority for a category of HMO in its area.
  • Tenancy agreements and length and security of tenure.
  • How local authorities are discharging their homelessness duty by being able to place homeless households in private sector housing. Continue reading Enquiry into Private Rented Sector gives opportunity to voice opinion

Norwich City Council use Proceeds of Crime Act against Criminal Landlord Landlord News, Latest Articles, Property News

Norwich City Council is the first local authority in the country to use Proceeds Of Crime Act (POCA) 2002 against a Criminal landlord who failed to comply with HMO license conditions.

Mr Joseph Howman, of Grosvenor Road, Norwich, pleaded guilty to nine offences under the Houses in Multiple Occupation Regulations 2006 and did not meet the standards required of a landlord in the Licence Conditions (part 2, Housing Act 2004). Continue reading Norwich City Council use Proceeds of Crime Act against Criminal Landlord


The tragic story of an HMO tenant Fun Stuff, Landlord News, Landlords Stories, Latest Articles, Property News

I remember several years back meeting an old farmer boy type landlord in the car park on my way into a Landlord Association meeting. He fit all of the stereotypes I mention in my blog about my first intentional property investment; you know, old, grumpy, HMO landlord, wearing a tweed jacket. Anyhow, he looked even grumpier this particular evening (barely possible!). All-right mate? I asked in my best Norfolk accent. No he said, bloody tenants! What’s up I asked, one of em’s dead he replied. Oh I’m sorry to hear that I say, wait till you hear this says the landlord. The tragic story of an HMO tenant Continue reading The tragic story of an HMO tenant


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