“Landlord crams tenants into what was four-bedroom home” was just one of the headlines last week that caught my eye. The property in Napier Road in Wembley uncovered THIRTY-ONE people living in a four bedroom house. This took maximizing profits to the another level. This four bed family home was converted into a nine bed shanty town shack made from wood off-cuts, pallets and tarpaulins.
The property is owned by a landlord who now faces prosecution, a criminal record and an unlimited fine. It has been converted from its original state and has been chopped up into cubicles, each stuffed with bunk beds in order to cram in as many tenants as possible.
A shed which was in the rear of the garden, was without heat or light and was being used to house the only woman living at the address.
Due to the number of people living in the house it is estimated the landlord was earning in the region of £80,000 per annum in rent! Whilst we would all like to turn our annual rental income from £23,000 – (which is the normal rent for such a property under an AST) into £80,000 we must make sure that it is done so within the legal remit.
This landlord is due to painfully discover the consequences of breaching these. He now faces prosecution, a criminal record and an unlimited fine.
I have recently had a couple, who are clients of mine, contact me and ask how they can maximize their rental income with little or no work (not to the extent above!). After sitting down with the couple and discussing possibilities with them I found that there were three main points that they needed to address: They wanted to increase the income, they had concerns about the possible damage to their property and finally they did not want extra hassle. We sat down and had a long chat about their property. I was able to illustrate to them how they could maximize their income, and whilst doing so as long as things were done properly damage risk would be mitigated apart from the usual wear and tear. As far as the hassle factor was concerned, this would be fully taken care of by the company as part of our fully managed service.
Anything to do with Lettings can be tricky, however as long as the key elements are followed there is no reason why it shouldn’t run smoothly. Firstly treat it like a business, secondly have realistic expectations and understand that things can go up and down. Thirdly, leave it to me, that’s what I’m here for!
Richard Bond, Lettings Manager