20,000 Evictions-UK’s Largest Eviction Company Advises Landlords To Obtain Professional Tenant Referencing [Part 2]
Leading tenant eviction company Landlord Action has acted on nearly 20,000 problem tenant cases since 1999.
Founder of Landord Action, Paul Shamplina, has seen some horrific things in his time and over his next three blogs, he is going to be talking about some dangerous types of tenants that landlords should try to avoid at all costs.
We at LRS particularly liked his first blog about “Professional Bad Tenants” and thought it would be beneficial for our members to read his second blog here:
Over the last couple of years, the problem of unauthorised subletting has been growing. From last year alone, our instructions relating to unauthorised subletting have increased by around 15%.
An unauthorised sublet is when a tenant re-lets a property to another tenant without the prior permission of the landlord. It can affect all types of landlords. However, overseas landlords and HMO landlords are particularly vulnerable.
Unauthorised subletters will take out a tenancy in the normal fashion, and then, after they have moved into the property and ‘have the real landlord off their back’, will sublet to multiple occupants. Often, they appear to the real landlord as respectable tenants who intend to live in your property for years.
The unauthorised subletter will usually draw up tenancy agreements for individual rooms and let the rooms out separately – as if they were the real landlord. In other cases, illegal subletters have let out rooms on a nightly basis.
This leads to a number of issues. First, the end-tenant isn’t aware of who the real landlord is. If there is a problem with the property, illegal subletters don’t usually get involved with proper management – after all, their focus is on making a quick buck.
Second, many unauthorised sublets are, in effect, a HMO. If the landlord never intended the property to be a HMO, required licenses may not have been obtained. Although many landlords see these types of licenses as needless red-tape, they do offer an added level of protection to the tenant, e.g., fire safety regulations.
Further, the tenant’s deposit will most likely be pocketed by the unauthorised subletter, meaning that it is not protected by a government scheme. It is most likely that the tenant will end up losing their deposit in this scenario.
Inevitably, illegal subletting leads to issues of overcrowding. Needless to say, an overcrowded property is not good for the tenant. But also, it isn’t good for the landlord either since overcrowded properties often lead to damage to the property.
CASE STUDY: Rose Chimuka
Rosa Chimuka, a known subletter
We exposed Rose Chimuka, a serial illegal subletter, on BBC Inside Out last year. Once she gets into the property, she changes the locks and divides the house up into rooms to sublets. She collects the rent and, obviously, does not pass it over to the landlord. She has done this at least 5 times according to some sources.
The landlord who instructed us to remove Chimuka ended up losing £15,000 on legal fees and restoration costs. However, another landlord in South London wasn’t so fortunate – he was owed nearly £36,000 in rent, and had around £50,000 damage to his property.
So, what should landlords do to counter the threat of illegal subletting?
A lot of it goes back to doing the basics properly (we will be talking about tenant referencing in the coming weeks). In addition, ensuring you have good relationships with neighbours is essential, since they will tell you if a lot of people are staying at the property.
There is no substitute for proper tenant referencing, previous landlord’s reference and having sight of a previous tenancy agreement either. Whilst not every professional bad tenant will get flagged, it does ensure that the vast majority of them are off your radar.
If landlords do suspect unauthorised subletting is happening in the property, the sub-tenants should be spoken to directly to clarify the situation as they may well be unaware of the circumstances themselves. But remember, a landlord should never accept payment direct from a sub-tenant as this would be a form of consenting to a new tenancy agreement with them.
If the end tenant is happy to remain in the property (and so is the landlord), cut out the middle man by going through the proper procedures to have the tenancy negated, then draw up a new tenancy for each resident. Under no circumstances should they accept any payment of rent until the matter is sorted.
[ Article & Photography Sourced From Property118.com; http://urlm.in/ifpa ] [ Originally written by Paul Shamplina; http://urlm.in/hwnp ]
What LRS says;
We at LRS live by the saying “Prevention is Better Than Cure”.
Mr Shamplina at landlordaction.co.uk does a great job at recovering property, looking after the needs of landlords, etc – as he has said, Mrs Chimuka cost one landlord £15,000 on legal fees and restoration costs & another was owed nearly £36,000 in rent, and had around £50,000 damage to his property – and that is why Mrs Chimuka is registered on the LRS database.
There are thousands of Mrs Chimuka’s out there and YOU could be their next target.
We think that Mr Shamplina is brilliant at what he does & the best in the business, but would prefer if you didn’t have to call him, and just joined LRS direct FOR FREE instead – to quote Mr Shamplina ‘whilst we cannot claim that EVERY bad tenant will get flagged, it does ensure that the vast majority of them are off your radar.’
We are the ONLY FREE UK based Landlord2Landlord Network Referencing Service that offers a manual data-input system – giving you a unique, personal & friendly touch to Landlord2Landlord Referencing.
(Please Note; Be aware of imitations of other network referencing companies, as these are automated services, and therefore if a rogue landlord inputs false information into these imitation systems then there is going to be false information being given to you, voiding the whole concept entirely.
Landlords use automated systems to get rid of rogue tenants, without recourse to them.
At landlord referencing you get the chance to communicate with the last landlord and be the judge yourself.)
Thus making Landlord referencing the safest referencing system in the UK today.
We would also like to remind all of our members to have a look at:
- Our New ENTIRELY FREE Property Portal Propertyink; www.propertyink.co.uk
- Ourloop; The FREE face of networking for Landlords, Letting Agents, Local Authority
Housing, Landlord Associations and Property Networking Groups @ www.ourloop.co.uk
- Our LRS Letting Protocol here; http://t.co/eM2QGNq
- Landlord and Rent Guarantee Insurance; http://urlm.in/htch
- For £109.64 Incl. you can get an ID/Credit check & purchase Insurance to cover your rent if your tenant defaults, which is the BEST value package in the market today; http://t.co/sP6Gjvb
- Free downloadable landlord templates; http://urlm.in/htci