We constantly keep up-to-date with lettings news and it’s very clear that the last month has been about naming and shaming.
A survey by LetBritain found that the UK’s renters thought letting agents were ‘dishonest’ liers, working in a ‘ruthless and unethical’ industry. Meanwhile, a political blogger went as far as calling letting agents ‘squatters’ and ‘rightly despised, obnoxious and unnecessary.’
While this is pure PR puff and hyperbole, there is more legitimate mud slinging taking shape. London’s Mayor, Sadiq Khan, has announced a new database to name and shame successfully prosecuted criminal landlords and letting agents in the capital. This database will be publicly viewable to landlords as well as tenants, who will be able to cross check any letting agent they are hoping to work with. Surely letting agents will have to work extra hard not to be blacklisted?
The naming and shaming, however, is working in both directions as news reaches us of a Facebook group set up for agents and landlords to compare notes on tenants. While this particular social media initiative is confined to the Merseyside area for now, it won’t be long before the idea spreads across the country.