A Birmingham letting agent has a new way of resolving arrears run up by some of his tenants - he goes on to the Judge Rinder TV show and asks m’lud to make a decision.
For the uninitiated, Judge Rinder is an arbitration show, shot on a set made to appear like a courtroom, and shown on ITV’s daytime schedule over the past four years. It’s led by ‘Judge’ Robert Rinder, who in real life is a criminal barrister.
In the show he ‘hears’ cases - usually the equivalent of small claims cases, but with real life participants often selected to provide the best entertainment - and at the end he makes a ruling as to who wins, and how much the loser pays.
The production company behind the show found that Sanjive Mahandru, owner-director of Muskaan Estates in Birmingham, had interesting sounding tenants and over the past 18 months no fewer than five cases - normally arrears - have featured on the show.
“It takes a whole day to film a show, even though the case is just a few minutes long. I prepare in the same way I’d prepare for a real-life hearing involving a tenant, but it’s a great day out at the studio” says Sanjive - who also has a reputation as a ‘green’ agent who uses a bicycle and public transport, as Estate Agent Today reported yesterday.
“I appear and the tenant appears, and we’re told that Judge Rinder is likely to make a few jokes at our expense” Sanjive told Letting Agent Today.
Sanjive has won three of his cases and lost two, but he has revealed that whatever the result both himself and the tenant are literally in the money - as it’s the production company that actually pays the ‘fine’ meted out by Judge Rinder.
“So on one occasion a tenant owed about £4,000 and the case went in my favour - but the tenant didn’t pay a penny. The TV company paid me and the tenant actually didn’t clear the arrears.
"The TV company got good entertainment, I got what I was owed and the tenant got away. Everyone’s a winner...”
Sanjive doesn’t rule out appearing on the show again - he occasionally corresponds with the production team to let them know of potential cases - but he has revealed to LAT that aside from seeing his own appearances on YouTube and the ITV Hub, he hasn’t actually seen the show - not even once.
Sounds like he should be taken to the cells as a punishment...