More than 100 residents in east London have been refused a rent reduction by their letting agent.
Residents living at Tower Quay in Shacklewell had requested a 20% rent reduction to help cope during the Covid-19 pandemic, but letting agent Tower Quay properties reportedly told the residents to pay up “using the money they would have spent on lunches and holidays”.
Tower Quay, owned by Monaco-based tycoon John Christodoulou, is the agent for 170 flats in Somerford Grove, Shacklewell.
A two-bedroom flat in the warehouse conversion block costs £1,495 per month to rent.
Tower Quay properties told residents they would be expected to pay on time during the pandemic and that they were “not willing to budge”.
The agent said: “Subsequently, when all of this is taken into account, in most cases we believe the impact on disposable income will be minimal, and there is therefore no justification for any reduction in rent, especially considering that whilst tenants are isolating the wear and tear in properties is increasing, which will be at the cost of the landlord.”
Christodoulou’s company owns a vast portfolio with more than 10 million sq ft of real estate, including a number of four and five star hotels such as the Four Seasons in Canary Wharf, London.
One tenant told MailOnline: “Tower Quays are not providing any rental relief. We have had flatmates get laid off and are here on visas so unable to collect any benefits from the UK government yet we are told there is no rent ease.
“This is unacceptable at these times especially since there are plans laid out by the government to have a hold on their mortgages which would allow landlords to provide a freeze on rent or reduce rent.
“At a time when the world needs kindness and to come together, Tower Quay has been a company of greed and the picture of how not to behave in a global pandemic.”
A survey of 537 landlords carried out by eviction firm Landlord Action found that since the lockdown took place last month some 74% of landlords have been contacted by tenants saying they will struggle to pay their rent.