Last month, we decided to commission a white paper for a landlord insurance company to look at the landlord-tenant relationship in various parts of the British Isles. We got 300 landlords from all around the UK and asked them some key questions to get a better idea of not just whether they trust their tenants and why. We lined up 4 main questions for them to answer:
- Out of 10, how much do you trust your tenants?
- Would you trust your tenant to look after your own house?
- How often do you visit your tenants?
- In the last three years, has any damage been caused by tenants?
We also got some other information, where the landlords live and how old they are, so that we could look too see if there were any relationships between the results and whether we could identify where any distrust came from. Our main findings were interesting.
Overall in the UK, the picture was pretty bleak with the majority of landlords stating that they did not trust their tenants very much with 66% of landlords unwilling to entertain the possibility of letting their tenants look after their own home.
We also found, somewhat predictably that any landlords who had their properties damaged by tenants were much less likely to trust tenants. Of the 28% who had suffered damage to furniture or property, 42% of those were less trusting and only 11% most trusting.
We found that how often you visit a property has a substantial impact on whether a property was damaged. 5% of those who visited their properties once a week or more had damage, whereas 39% of those who visited annually had experienced damage. We can glean from this that either the frequency of landlord visits fosters better relations with tenants, or the tenant is more wary and careful about the house due to the prospect of a potential visit.
In the end, we found that there was a definite correlation between rent price and trust level. We saw for instance that Surrey (a high rent area) with average rental prices of £1366 per month had a greater trust rate than Northern Ireland for instance, which had an average rental of £550. In the results you should note that London is the exception due to its cosmopolitan and complex demographic nature. More statistics would need to be compiled so as to get a better picture of the London situation. For the moment however, there is a clear north-south divide in terms of landlord trust.