The head of a major PropTech company serving the lettings sector says he want to see the introduction of a database for identifying rogue tenants.
Neil Cobbold, chief operating officer for PayProp in the UK, says such a blacklist would emulate the newly-introduced Rogue Landlord and Agent Checker in London; a similar database is expected to be introduced across the UK in the spring.
“The progress being made in terms of identifying criminal landlords and letting agents is admirable, but it's understandable that many professionals feel there should also be a register of offending tenants,” says Cobbold.
“A minority of tenants damage properties, pay rent late or cause problems in the local neighbourhood, so it only seems fair that landlords and agents should be aware of these people.”
PayProp - a bank-integrated automated payment platform - is integrated with maintenance management platform Fixflo, and allows agents and landlords to monitor and respond to damage to rental properties.
Cobbold also backs the rogue agent and landlord checker, which allows London renters to check prospective landlords and agents, while aiming to act as a deterrent to criminal operators. However, he wants it extended beyond the current 10 local authorities in the capital who participate.
“It's pleasing that a quarter of London boroughs are supporting [London mayor] Sadiq Khan's blacklist, but of course it’s vital that the remaining authorities get on board in the near future,” says Cobbold.
“At the moment, however, too many of London's tenants are not covered by the register, which is a shame as it could become an extremely handy tool for those moving between properties.
“As the project moves forward, it's key that the authorities taking part update their records on a regular basis.”
“Raising awareness of the scheme will also be key,” adds Cobbold.