Ask Tenants blog
These days you can rate and review almost everything but tenants often ask a question, can I rate my landlord just like any other product or service?
The simple answer to this question is no. There are many platforms including google to review companies, however majority of landlords are individuals not companies. Unlike companies, individuals do not show up on google making it almost impossible to rate your landlord. It’s very frustrating that you can rate almost anything you buy or rent but cannot rate your landlord. A typical UK tenant hands over around 50% of income to landlord and has nowhere to rate the rental experience.
We experienced this frustration when we ended up in a flat with black mould and moth infestation. I developed skin allergies due to mould. After suffering for a year we wanted to rate our landlord or property for potential tenants looking to rent the flat. However there was nothing available online to do so. We decided to warn the potential tenants who were coming to view the property. The viewing happened while we were away so we were unable to do so. When we went to collect our post, we realised the tenant who rented the property also suffered from mould issues in the flat, particularly their 3 year old daughter.
To rent the property, we had to jump through many checks like previous landlord references, employer references, put 6 weeks tenancy deposit + 1 month rent upfront and go through reference screening (at our cost). However, when the landlord did not deliver, we had no place to document our rental experience and make it count. This seemed like very unfair and one sided process in favor of landlord.
This experience led to launch of Asktenants.co.uk where tenants can rate their rental property and landlord. Given the landlords are individuals and cannot be rated tenants rate the property instead, landlord is just one aspect of property rating. This makes logical sense, as at the end of the day if property is good, you do not need to interact much with the landlord.
Since the launch of the website, thousands of properties have been rated by UK tenants, with new properties being added every day. Here is how a property/landlord rating appears on Asktenants.co.uk. We have handpicked some of the good and bad reviews here. This demonstration video shows how the website works, highlighting the amount of research being put in.
Almost a third (29 per cent) of homes rented from private landlords fail to meet the national Decent Homes Standard. More than 10,000 rogue landlords are operating in England and Wales alone. Councils have miserably failed to penalise rogue landlords, almost 90% of local authorities failed to use new powers to fine rogue landlords last year. Even if councils were effective the experiences like mine will be considered trivial despite significant inconvenience. Councils are likely to focus on serious issues like “hole in the wall” first.
With landscape so bleak, tenants need to be proactive to share their rental experience online, this will motivate good landlords and deter rogue ones. Asktenants.co.uk provides the platform to do so. Please support this cause by posting good or bad property renting experiences. You can rate current or former rental experiences (going back upto six years). If you prefer not to write a text review, you can just complete survey and our software will do the rest.
So while the answer to the question can I rate my landlord online is no, good news is that tenants can now rate their rental property experience on Asktenants.co.uk. Landlord responsiveness is rated as part of the rental experience.