Leading council urges local tenants to report misbehaving letting agents

Exeter has set a bad precedent by urging tenants to report agents for a wide range of issues including discrimination, harassment and evictions.

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A city council the SW has made an unusual bid to intervene in the rental market, urging private tenants within its borders to report errant letting agents and landlords to its officers.

Exeter has launched the new form, which it says should be used by tenants within the PRS who have been unable to resolve issues with their landlord or letting agent.

The initiative is part of a growing trend of local authorities making much more aggressive interventions in the PRS, egged on and often backed financially by national governments keen to raise standards.

Exeter City Council wants to see agents and landlords reported for a wide range of issues including discrimination, dishonest or unfair practices, energy efficiency, harassment, housing disrepair, HMO mismanagement, illegal evictions and overcrowding.


bob foale exeter letting agentsCllr Bob Foale, Lead Councillor for Transformation & Environment, said: “We know that there are a minority of landlords who are either not aware of their responsibilities and obligations or simply choose not to fulfil them.

“The majority of Exeter’s landlords share our aim of driving up the quality and standard of private rented housing. However, the minority can adversely affect the reputation of other landlords and the private rented sector as a whole.

“The new online form allows private tenants to contact the council for help and advice when they are unable to resolve issues with their landlord or letting agent.”

The council says it is important that ‘before contacting the Council, tenants have reported their repair issues direct to their landlord’.

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