Thousands of private tenants claim to have suffered abuse at the hands of landlords according to Shelter, which include threats, assaults and harassment which could have, and indeed should have ended up with legal action being taken against them, but while there are many serious issues that are simply unacceptable, it is not just a one way street, research by the National Landlords Association (NLA) shows.
Shelter often hears from renters who have to put up with problematic property owners, with some suffering at the hands of rogue landlords, but the latest report by the NLA actually suggests that as many as 600,000 buy-to-let landlords have themselves been abused by tenants in the past.
“Three in ten landlords in the UK, which is approximately 600,000, say they have been either verbally or physically abused by a tenant before,” said Richard Lambert, chief executive officer at the NLA.
The NLA is by no means trying to excuse the poor behaviour of a small minority of rogue landlords, with Lambert insisting that no one should have to put up with a “criminal landlord”. But he also points to a lack of enforcement and prosecution from councils which make it “way too easy for the unscrupulous to get away with this kind of behaviour”.
Lambert also highlights figures from the NLA’s latest research which shows that 82% of tenants report to being happy with their existing landlord. “Furthermore, Shelter’s figures show the vast majority of landlords to be law abiding,” he added.
Ultimately, what is important, according to Lambert, is that anyone who feels they are being harassed, abused or subject to what they consider to be illegal behaviour “seek immediate advice” and “reports the matter to the police and relevant authorities”.