Landlord Advice – There are numerous landlord services and advice lines out there designed to help landlords struggling with their businesses, however even if your business is doing well you can still face common problems. These days, one of the biggest problems landlords face is that there are numerous negative stereotypes surrounding them, meaning they are often ignored or even subjected to abuse.
PropertyQuoteDirect regularly discusses how the media represents landlords, and at times it seems as though they don’t get their side of the story heard. This is why we have decided to try and change the face of landlords by dispelling some of the most common myths surrounding them. Below you will find each negative belief concerning landlords and a more positive message that should hopefully help landlords be better understood by their tenants and society:
“Landlords charge too much rent”
The recession has been hard on everyone here in the UK, however many feel that landlords have benefited from it and the subsequent housing crisis. It is true that those with buy to let properties have found themselves in higher demand over the past few years due to climbing property prices, however at the same time these landlords are expected to foot the bill for more expensive properties.
As with most things to do with economics, this issue isn’t as simple as making landlords charge their tenants cheaper rent. If they do, they will find it harder to keep their businesses afloat due to the cost of maintaining their portfolios, meaning they may eventually have to close.
With so many people currently relying on the private rental sector, having a large chunk of landlords sell off their properties could lead to chaos. Even though rent prices are at an all-time high there is a wider issue that needs to be addressed here, something that landlords can help with yet cannot conquer on their own.
“Landlords evict tenants without warning”
Generally, landlords couldn’t think of anything worse than having to go through the eviction process with a tenant. Firstly, it means that they will lose a steady income and secondly it takes a considerable amount of time and money.
Most of the time landlords will only evict a tenant for two reasons:
1) They have breached their contract by failing to pay their rent or mistreating the property.
2) The landlord needs to take back the property for financial or personal reasons.
In the latter case, most landlords would ask the tenant to leave once their tenancy is up, which is not only common but also reasonable as this should have been discussed and noted in the Tenancy Agreement.
If a tenant breaches their contract it can takes months or even years for a landlord to have them removed from their property, all the while potentially receiving no rental income. There are numerous laws in place to protect tenants from rogue landlords, however the truth is that most landlords would only evict a tenant if they had no other option!
“Landlords don’t care about tenants”
The whole reason landlords associations and advice lines were created in the first place is because landlords are often concerned over how to manage their tenants. Being a landlord isn’t easy – in fact it is a huge responsibility as essentially you are keeping a roof over someone’s head.
It is true that there are some rogue landlords out there, and unfortunately these landlords give everyone a bad name. The key here is to not think about them as ‘landlords’ as in reality they are scam artists trying to make money out of vulnerable tenants looking for somewhere to live.
Landlords rely on tenants just as much as tenants rely on landlords, which is why most landlords want to ensure that they have a positive relationship. Those who take advantage of tenants are not landlords, they are scammers who are breaking the law.
“Landlords have an easy life”
Any landlord worth their salt will tell you that this is the most untrue myth there is! Being a landlord takes time, dedication and a considerable amount of risk which means that landlords experience many a sleepless night.
As a landlord you are relying on other people not only to look after one of the most expensive things you own but to also provide a steady income. In return they must ensure that they treat their tenants with the respect they deserve and fulfil their duties no matter what time of day or night.
Being a landlord is a 24/7, 365-day a year job, meaning it is far from easy. Furthermore, changes to the UK economy or property markets are difficult to predict which means that landlords are required to adapt their businesses on a regular basis. Every landlord knows that there is a level of uncertainty when it comes to their future, however by providing the best service possible their businesses should be able to weather any storm.
With the General Election just weeks away it’s important that landlords ensure their needs and opinions are heard so that the private rental sector benefits all involved. As more and more people rely on rented properties for homes, landlords are becoming an increasingly important part of society, so make sure you don’t let negative stereotypes affect your role!