UK Landlord Fines Renters £90 for Leaving Dirty Dishes in Sink!

How tenants get abused by unethical landlords & agents

                                                                     By: Tony Coe, Founder & CEO


Couple renting home in UK

Renting a home in the UK can be a risky business, especially for people from overseas who are moved here by their employer for work reasons.  Despite the government’s long outstanding promise to ban the bad practice of demanding so-called admin charges, they’ve still not outlawed “fees for keys”.  But once a tenant has moved in, that’s when the abuse can really get going!

The Guardian newspaper recently published a report about a young renter who was struggling to find affordable housing in London.  He came across a Facebook ad offering a room in a house share in Hackney for a monthly rent of £900.  This sounded like a reasonable deal because it included cleaning, utilities, broadband and council tax. 

But like most tenants, this renter just signed whatever contract was put in front of him!  There were clauses in the contract such as these:                                                                   

  • The landlord could terminate the tenant’s occupation of the home at any point giving only 7 days’ notice to move out
  • Appliances like fridge, washing machine and drier must be maintained by renters at their own expense
  • Any extra items (e.g. furniture) that renters require will be half paid for by the renter and must be left in the home when they move out
  • Landlord’s staff can inspect rooms unannounced at any time and levy fines for any perceived transgressions such as untidiness!

Washing dishes is the house rules in UK

The renter in question was fined £90 for leaving dirty dishes in the sink and a further £225 for removing unsightly notices taped to the fridge that warned against breaking “house rules”.

Good employers who move their staff overseas provide proper relocation support that protects them from bad practices like this.  Such support can be as extensive as providing a fully escorted home finding service - or it can be limited to reviewing documents and negotiating fair rental agreement terms

It makes good business sense for employers to provide proper relocation support.  Abused, unhappy renters are unlikely to be fully productive in their jobs.  Providing great relocation support enhances employee retention and loyalty too.


Rental agreement in UK

At Saunders 1865, we’ve been helping renters find their perfect homes for over three decades. But more than that, we ensure our clients have watertight rental agreements (with no hidden surprises). Sadly, cases such as this occur frequently, and HR managers need to ensure their talent have the right support before entering the volatile UK rental market.

If you are responsible for moving people abroad, or if you are moving abroad yourself, talk to Saunders 1865. Simply fill in this contact form or call us on +44 7590 2700. Let’s get a conversation started.

Saunders team was very helpful with the relocation support making our move to the UK as smooth as could be.

Thanks again Saunders 1865.

Laurent Lepeu, Paris