Communities and Local Government CommitteeWritten evidence submitted by Sarah Wild

As a landlord in Reading for Reading university students of 14 years in Private Rented Sector my experience is:

1.Landlords fall roughly into two groups—those that care about the regulations and those that do not and rent poor quality homes. But my experience is also that the “good” landlords are made to “pay” huge sums of money because of the “bad” landlords. Legislation/standards will be ignored by bad landlords and just add additional costs to “good” landlords. And this may have to be passed onto tenants.

2.Tenants can be “bad”. Despite getting references I have had tenants that did £1000.00s of damage—and did not mind “losing their deposit”. I have had faked references.

3.DHSS tenants—I will never have them again as the money paid for their rent was spent by the recipient of housing benefit on “other things”.

I aim to be a responsible landlord but it is getting more and more difficult to be a “fair” tenant as the legislation assumes I am a “bad person” and requires me to carry out so many tests for my home that I have had to reduce what I provide. (EG I no longer provide any small electrical appliances as these have to be tested each year, even if they are OK, and the “test” is so expensive it is cheaper to throw away small electrical items and replace them. I do not want to throw away “good” equipment, so I no longer provide them.)

I had a GOLD rating from the local authority for my property and its management.

January 2013

Prepared 16th July 2013