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    Item on ‘You and Yours’ Radio 4 programme today :

    Th subject was private rentals, and one of the authors of a book called ‘The Accidental Landlord’ was interviewed (Daniel Lees).

    The suggestion was that those who become landlords accidentally (often through letting out a house they are unable to sell), don’t really see what they’re doing as a business, and have a less than professional approach. A drawback is that the tenancies are often for shorter periods than those of landlords who are making a business out of letting.

    The book is an attempt to educate those who don’t set out to be landlords, but find themselves in that position through circumstance. I’ll read it and post my reflections.

    The programme challenged my assumption, which was that private landlords letting out only one property may do it better if they see it not just as a commercial business, or take a more personal interest in their tenants.


    Roni Moran

    Interesting discussion on the programme, I listened to it after reading your post. If I’m anything to go by, it’s probably often true that accidental landlords aren’t very well informed when they start out. I first let out when my job situation changed. I know I relied on the estate agents to guide me with regards compliance with legislative requirements as I had been focussing on the practicalities of moving and getting the house ready. But it was a bit haphazard and not really ideal. So it sounds like the book could be a useful reference to help accidental landlords take a professional approach from the start. I’ll look forward to hearing your reflections on the book when you’ve read it.



    I missed the programme unfortunately but it raises an interesting issue. I was once asked by a landlord how we, as an agency, we could possibly look after his property as well as he could when he had all his focus on one property whereas my staff are responsible for a large number of properties.

    The answer is of course, that we are working on managing the properties under our care full time. We are updating ourselves daily on regulatory and statutory changes, we take a series of exams and are always trying to better our knowledge in the field in which we operate.

    More often than not we don’t know what we don’t know, and often landlords managing their own properties are blissfully unaware of what they may be missing. Often these landlords strive to offer an exceptionally high standard and may go well above the minimum requirements in one aspect, but miss their obligations entirely in another.

    I am biased, obviously, but would always recommend that consulting an agency or expert in lettings regularly. Most agencies will tailor a service to suit those landlords who like to take an active role in managing their own properties, ensuring a caring and attentive landlord is dotting the’i’s’ and crossing the ‘t’s’.

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