A recent tenant survey has revealed worryingly prevalence of dodgy shenanigans in the private rented sector. Roughly one-third of UK tenants in the private rented sector have admitted to subletting without obtaining consent from their landlord. Furthermore, 40% intend to do so in the near future.
For 96% of tenants who sublet, it is claimed they are doing so on a short-term basis to help out a friend or family member, while 82% say they do it to share the cost of renting. There would, therefore, appear to be some overlap.
More than half (52%) of tenants said they planned to sublet their property in the near future, with the consent of the landlord. However, an eyebrow-raisingly high proportion of tenants (78%) said they think it should be okay to sublet without the approval of the landlord.
Obviously, this isn’t great news, as aside from security and insurance issues, housing more tenants than one expects can result in increased wear and tear, which leads to costly repairs for damage and redecoration.
The findings fall in line with reports from Landlord Action of a growing number of landlords who are trying to start possession proceedings against subletters. Allegedly, subletting is fast becoming one of the leading grounds for tenant eviction.
Although the Government is toying with the idea of making it easier for tenants to sublet a room, by legislating against the use of clauses in fixed-term tenancy agreements that expressly prohibit subletting, it is still very much deemed an unacceptable practice. Regular property checks are strongly advised.