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Renters feel let down by ‘dishonest and unethical’ letting agents, claims study

For both parties, a good landlord-tenant relationship is great for everyone involved, but that rapport can sometimes be ruined by ‘dishonest and unethical’ letting agents, it has been claimed.

A fresh study among 2,000 private renters by online estate agent LetBritain has found that 40% of renters dubbed the marketplace across the UK as ‘ruthless and unethical’ with agents allowing gazumping to become a commonplace practice.

The existing system is not fit for purpose as it cannot cater to the demand and speed of the market, according to 37% of those polled, with the problem most acute in the capital where half of renters are discontent.

Some 37% of renters also believe that they may have been misled by a letting agent regarding the competition they faced from other renters – again London was identified as the region with the biggest problem by more than three-fifths (61%) of Londoners.

There also appears to be a problem when it comes to agents advertising homes to let that are no longer available - according to 38% of respondents - presumably to boost the level of rental applicants actively looking to rent property.

Meanwhile, almost a third (31%) of renters believe they could have lost out on a property because the agent had preferred relations with another prospective tenant.

Fareed Nabir, founder and CEO of LetBritain, commented: “Today’s research delivers some revealing insights into the opinions of generation rent.

“It is obvious that renters up and down the country feel let down by their estate agent – from luring them in with properties that aren’t available to misleading potential tenants about the competition they face, the country’s rental population is suffering at the hands of questionable practices.

“Clearly a faster, fairer and more transparent system is required to alleviate the time and stress involved in securing a rental property.”

  • Kristjan Byfield

    Yet another poll, no doubt with leading questions, to create a report to serve a PR message. What is worrying with online offerings for lettings is the questions over how they can ensure that all 400+ legalities are met. How do they fulfil Right to Rent check obligations? I can see no mention of warning ober HMO legislation, Legionnaires checks, Smoke & CO checks and the such like.
    Whilst the rise of online in sales is one thing, the rise of the online Letting Agent raises some very dangerous questions. A common theme of message is the fact that they deliver better services to both Landlord and Tenant with 'increased transparency' however it appears to me that they are actually creating a much more dangerous rental market for Tenants and Landlords alike with it being impossible for them tpo fulfil their duties of complete compliance to both parties whilst also failing to educate said parties in theor rights and responsibilities. Very worrying indeed.

  • icon

    Silly, Silly. Sales people have pulled all these stunts for probably 3,000 years. Education in ways of the world as part of your life education is the way forward. Put a brick through the TV, bin the iPhone and get a real life.

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