Vision for an independent organisation to represent UK landlords

Vision for an independent organisation to represent UK landlords

20:18 PM, 16th September 2018, About 5 years ago 76

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* Suggestions made by Mark Alexander, founder of –

Imagine an organisation with 10’s of millions of pounds of budget every year, funded entirely by its landlord members and acting only in the interests of its members. No sponsorships, no affiliations, no sharing of member data or side deals with any suppliers of services to landlords whatsoever.

For decades our sector has been contemplating how this could actually be achieved in practice, and how every landlord in the UK could be compelled to join such an organisation without any legislative change needed.

Support required

If the groups listed below agreed only do business with landlords who are members, this would mean that no landlord could operate without becoming a member.

  • Mortgage lenders
  • Members of The Law Society
  • Members of the professional accountancy bodies
  • Deposit Protection Providers
  • Insurance Companies
  • Letting Agents

In practice, this could be achieved even if only the three Deposit Protection Scheme providers where to agree to support the proposals, but the other groups are also needed to add balance and to unite their expertise without disturbing delicate politics in their own sectors.

The numbers

Even after factoring in a substantial number of landlords leaving the sector, a realistic numbers prediction is circa 1.5 million landlord members, each paying £10 to £20 year. This produces a fund of £15000,000 to £30,000,000 annually.

The proposed organisation would operate on a ‘not-for-profit’ basis and its sole aim would be to serve its membership of landlords only.

With the levels of budget described above it could afford to have dedicated helplines, PR teams, lobbyists, event organisers, regional representatives and meetings, regular member webinars and high profile social media presence.

The organisation would be staffed by its own employees.

Objectives and opportunities

Now consider the influence and power the organisation would wield, with 15 to 30 million pounds of funding every year, on issues such as:-

  • Section 24 restrictions on finance cost relief
  • The campaign to end Section 21 of the Housing Act 1988
  • The ban on tenant fees
  • The campaign for rent capping
  • The ban on tenant fees
  • Universal Credit
  • The new HMO Licensing laws
  • PRA lending rules
  • Tax on insurance premiums
  • Compulsory Client Money Protection for agents
  • Funding of legal action (including Judicial reviews) which are pivotal to legislation and case law affecting its members

The PRS needs this to combat the destructive anti-landlord lobbying of organisations such as Shelter, Generation Rent etc. Their crazy ideas are being listened to but the voices of landlords and their supporting service providers are not.

Landlords Associations have proven to be ineffective, it is time for change.

Organisational structure

All Directors would be voted in annually by members and would serve a maximum of four years in every 8.

Directors would all be seconded by their employers from the sectors outlined in the “Support required” section above.

These organisations could nominate their employees to run for election as Directors on a secondment basis. If they are voted onto the board by members their salaries could then be reimbursed to their employers from the membership fund. Assuming an average salary for Board members of £100,000 a year, the cost of running the Board of Directors would be a drop in the ocean in comparison to the Budget.

One Director would be elected from each group.

The members voting system for the appointment of Directors would be online in a format resembling the following:-

Name Here

e.g. Tax, Law, Lending, deposit Protection, Insurance
Employer  [company
Salary  £xxx,xxx
Online Profile [website link]


UPDATE 2pm 18th September 2018

When I published this article I hadn’t considered Monopolies, closed shops legislation or restrictive trade practices or thought about running my ideas past our Legal Counsel Mark Smith before publishing. If I had done so, this article may never have been published. However, the subsequent discussion would not have happened either, so i think it is important that I leave this page up to facilitate further discussion and sharing of ideas.

So, where does that leave us?

It feels to me like we are back to square one of landlords being an apathetic group of somewhere between one and two million people without effective representation and an easy target for any Government authority to milk as cash cows whenever they see fit.

Anybody got an alternative solution they would like to propose?

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Michael Barnes

22:09 PM, 19th September 2018, About 5 years ago

Just got here, but my first impression was "it sounds very Labour: closed shop and promising to spend the same money on multiple things"

Mick Roberts

6:22 AM, 20th September 2018, About 5 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Gennie Nash at 18/09/2018 - 07:28

You'd need 100k salary to get someone of mine & Mark's calibre, or you'd only get some imbecile person that don't know 'ote like the PM & MP's who get paid 70kish to run city's & countries which is peanuts salary for a big business which is what the country is, that's why they always getting it wrong, 'cause u don't get the 'good' qualified experienced person for the job.
And you'd only get me part-time for that salary-But you'd get the wealth of experience & the drive.

Ha ha I read Marks comments which echo mine.

Yes Monty. Govt will come in soon for 2 reasons I think, they seeing Local Councils causing havoc & homelessness with Selective Licensing & Govt may get blame eventually, even though it's a local imbecile Labour council.
And yes the income, they want a slice of pie from all us Landlords who just keep paying out, but no one notices we have to keep giving the tenants rent increases for these costs & then we get the blame again.

Dave Smith

11:43 AM, 20th September 2018, About 5 years ago

A good starting point would be to merge NLA and RLA, two competing organisations which mean LLs have been divided and conquered, the establishment must love it. I've been a member of RLA and happy with the fee and range of services, and I have friends feel the same about NLA, although as far as I can tell from a cursory glance, they offer very similar services. Merging would give a stronger voice, economies of scale (so the membership income would go further and hopefully be more effective).

Luke P

11:46 AM, 20th September 2018, About 5 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Dave Smith at 20/09/2018 - 11:43Are you still a member now, Dave?

Dave Smith

11:48 AM, 20th September 2018, About 5 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Luke P at 20/09/2018 - 11:46
Yes. Just auto renewed. However I am selling all my leasehold flats, and changing property strategy, moving into serviced accommodation.

Luke P

12:48 PM, 20th September 2018, About 5 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Dave Smith at 20/09/2018 - 11:48
Then you are part of the problem. They will not listen and certainly won’t merge until the membership send them a message. But I guess you find what little they do offer as handy for you?

Dave Smith

18:30 PM, 20th September 2018, About 5 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Luke P at 20/09/2018 - 12:48
Yes RLA have been very helpful to me in the past, easily saving my membership fees. I feel leaving to 'send a message' leaves me unsupported. That said I am leaving the whole sector anyway so will soon be cancelling membership - I've finally had enough of Leasehold various traps and scams (doubling ground rents, permission fees, registration fees, insurance rip offs, managing agent scams, escalating out of control service charges, cladding scandal, etc, etc), I seem to have been affected by them all.

Michael Barnes

23:15 PM, 20th September 2018, About 5 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Luke P at 20/09/2018 - 12:48
Leaving is a very unspecific message.
As Mark wrote, it would be better to be inside the organisation and attempt to change it than to be outside and have no influence.

Mick Roberts

6:58 AM, 21st September 2018, About 5 years ago

Regarding those praising RLA NLA etc. I have no problem with the Landlord Organisations, but there is members in Nottingham who say the RLA NLA have done nothing for them AT ALL with Selective Licensing.

I ALONE have saved Nottingham Landlords £3,000,000 that's 3 MILLION quid in having to not put thumbturns on their houses.
I have saved Nottingham Landlords £1.35 million on not having to do floorplans.
I haven't charged for this, I have done this for free, for myself, for tenants, & for principles.
So if little old me with no salary for it, have done this, why haven't NLA RLA done more?

RLA may say we was gonna' help u appeal the thumbturns once the scheme came in. It was too ruddy late then, as Landlords had to do 'em before the start of the scheme. And some Landlords did do 'em before they heard about my victory.

There's lots of Landlords up & down country who are members, who are being subject to Selective Licensing & it's just a big rob & we need the big Landlord organisations to help.

Someone high up like Mark Alexander hmm hmm ha ha could do with leaning on 'em & saying Let's ruddy all join up & stop these councils walking all over us. But then we're back to square one, unless we all pay in at same time, it's probably never gonna' get started.

Gwen Davies

9:52 AM, 21st September 2018, About 5 years ago

Please don't give up!! There must be someone out there who will di this! Xx

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