“Breathtaking” £400,000 letting agent theft proves urgency renting reform

The case of a Tyneside letting agent jailed after stealing almost half-a-million pounds from her employers proves the need for urgent change in the rental industry – that’s the verdict of one leading property boss.

Rental manager Angela Clift was this week jailed for two years after pocketing £400,000 she was supposed to be collecting on behalf of landlords for Newcastle property firm Keith Pattinson – in what the judge described as “breathtaking” offending.

Police seized expensive handbags, clothing, footwear, jewellery and a sports car from her and her partner’s homes after colleagues became suspicious when Clift had a pair of £500 sunglasses delivered to work.

Property expert and anti-deposit campaigner Ajay Jagota believes the case shows the need for change in an industry where an estimated £500m of rental deposits are believed to be illegally held.

The founder of sales and lettings firm KIS and insurance-backed deposit-free renting solution Dlighted said:

“Although I wasn’t in court to hear the exact details of this case, incidents like these are the inevitable outcome of an industry where too much money is flowing around unnecessarily with inadequate oversight over where it ends up.

“You’ve got tenants handing over hundreds and thousands of pounds in deposits and rent, and landlords acting in good faith that it will be money will dealt with appropriately. Of course most agents do just that, but five minutes on Google will show you that that is not always the case.

“We’re not just talking about a few quid here and there. We’ve got £500m of rental deposits apparently held illegally and firms collapsing owing hundreds of thousands of pounds – sometimes having been given a clean bill of health by industry watchdogs. And those are just the cases were hear about. That can’t be right.

“The simplest solution is to stop taking deposits and move to an insurance-backed model. It’s not just that it works perfectly well in other industries, it’s that you’ think it was ludicrous if people did it any other way. If you rent a car, you don’t hand over hundreds of pounds before you’re given the keys on the understanding that you’re guaranteed to crash it!

“The overall value of UK rental deposits is estimate to be £3.2bn. Having people handing over so much cash to an under-regulated industry is something which can’t continue – not when there are simple and effective solutions under our noses.”

d_lighted, an insurance backed deposit-free renting solution which slashes the costs of tenants finding homes and landlords finding tenants.

KIS were the first letting agents in the UK to abolish deposits, replacing them with a one-of-a-kind landlord insurance policy offering guaranteed rent, deposit replacement, legal assistance and round the clock third party emergency home repairs.

You May Also Enjoy

Estate Agent Talk

Pflugerville, TX: Emerging Trends in New Home Construction

The Rise of Sustainable Living in Pflugerville Nestled in the heart of Texas, Pflugerville is witnessing a significant shift towards sustainable living in new home construction. Builders and developers are increasingly focusing on eco-friendly materials and energy-efficient designs. This trend is not just a nod to environmental consciousness but also a response to the growing…
Read More
Home and Living

How to Choose the Best Shower Cabin For Your Budget

If you are looking for the best shower cabin to fit your budget, then allow us to be a guide on this shopping adventure! Whether you’re looking to invest in something luxurious and timeless or something more affordable and modern, it can be daunting knowing where even to start. Fortunately, we have all the key…
Read More
Breaking News

Breaking Property News – 01/12/2023

Daily bite-sized proptech and property news in partnership with Proptech-X. Full material Information Guidance B & C published by NTSELAT all you need to know New guidance for sales and letting agents covers all three phases of programme Aim is to help agents to meet their existing legal requirements under the CPRs Material information guides…
Read More
Home and Living

Navigating a Move with Your Baby: 7 Sanity-Saving Tips

Moving to a new home can be exciting and stressful, and adding a baby to the mix becomes a whole new adventure. Babies require extra attention and care during a move, but with some thoughtful planning and a few sanity-saving tips, you can make the transition smoother for you and your little one. In this…
Read More
Home and Living

Creating Privacy with Window Treatments: A Comprehensive Guide

When it comes to keeping your home a private sanctuary, you need the right window treatments. Whether you want complete blackout, light diffusing options, or sheer privacy curtains to let in sunlight while maintaining discretion from outsiders – there are plenty of creative ways to customize your windows for maximum personal security and protection. In…
Read More
Home and Living

Glass Shower Doors Styles: Finding the Ideal Fit for Your Bathroom

Are you ready to update your bathroom and give it a luxurious, sophisticated feel? Installing glass shower doors is the perfect way to brighten up any bathroom and add a stylish touch. There are a wide variety of styles available that can fit into any space or design theme. But which type of glass shower…
Read More