Can’t pay? we’ll take it away
I expect some of our readers will have watched the TV program “Can’t pay, we’ll take it away”, it is on Channel 5 on a wednesday evening, it follows people on the sharp end of bad debt – and those whose job it is to get the money back.
In the program this last wednesday we saw the eviction of 3 seperate tenants living in seperate properties owned by the same landlord, the 3 seperate tenants were all women with children, they were actually all neighbours to each other, I was shocked by the whole situation.
The odd thing about the evictions of these three tenants was that it appeared they had not committed any crime as I saw it, they had all paid their rent, they were all normal tenants getting on with their lives, until the High Court enforcement officers presented them with an immediate eviction notice.
It was not made totally clear the reason for the evictions except they had to vacate immediately, some tenants had their suspicions that the landlord wanted to relet the properties at a higher rent to non housing benefit tenants, this was not verified so should be taken as heresay. However, how can this really happen in Britain in 2015?
Surely landlords need to have a conscience as well as good business sense, are we going back in years when landlords were the high and mighty beings who held the lives of their tenants in their hands, was it not so long ago that coal mining and mill owners of the Victorian era evicted the families of men who were unable to work anymore, even those that had been killed or disabled through work place accidents.
Now must be the time for the Minister of State for Housing and Planning, Brandon Lewis to completely review the way tenancy agreements are set out and most importantly to look at giving tenants longer tenancy agreements, the short term tenancy agreement gives the tenant very little security, tenancies should be longer term with more protection to the tenant. I am sure the majority of Landlords are decent and understanding, the minority of greedy, uncaring and ruthless landlords must be brought to an end and quickly.
The Channel 5 program is excellent in giving an insight into how the High Court enforcement officers go about their business in the UK and the situations they come up against.