How can you prevent letting to rogue tenants?

A livid landlord has moved to release images showing the condition that a rogue tenant left his three-bedroom masionette in after he was finally evicted.

Landlord Nick Saunders was left with a £10,000 clean-up bill after tenants trashed his rental property in Plymouth, Devon.

The rogue tenants, who have young children, three dogs and two rats, were evicted from the property after a year-long dispute.


Mr Saunders described the state of the property as appalling, noting, ‘you literally couldn’t breathe when you went in to the house because the smell was so bad.’[1]

‘The dogs were allowed to urinate on the floors, they had taken all carpets up and when we finally got rid them, we found two rats in the boiler. They said they had one dog, which I was fine with, but they actually had three and there was excrement everywhere. Between the unpaid, legal costs and the refurbishment of house, I’d say I’m £10,000 out of pocket,’ Saunders continued.[1]

‘I have a mortgage and family of my own to provide for. They have no possessions or income so I’ll probably never get it back,’ he added.[1]

Background checks

The experience of Mr Saunders has underlined the importance of landlords properly vetting and referencing their prospective tenants. A full referencing process can identify potential problems and ultimately avoid them.

If you are a buy-to-let investors, make sure you conduct a full tenant referencing process. Ask for bank statements, which will prove the legitimacy of your tenants’ finances.

Paul Shamplina, founder of Landlord Action, notes, ‘most landlords will never have to evict a tenant.’ However, he said, ‘as landlords, you have to become streetwise. If you don’t have time to manage your property, you must use a regulated letting agent.’[1]

How can you prevent letting to rogue tenants?

How can you prevent letting to rogue tenants?

Landlords insurance

Measures such as a thorough credit check and tenant referencing can go a long way to minimise letting a property to bad tenants. However, there are no guarantees that a tenants’ circumstances won’t change, therefore you must choose a correct landlord insurance policy.

Just Landlords landlord insurance provides 33 essential covers, including cover against:

  • fire
  • lightning
  • earthquake
  • explosion
  • storm
  • flood

To fully cover yourself, you must also consider rent guarantee insurance. Even the best looking tenants on paper can be susceptible to change, therefore you should do the most you can to protect them and your investment!


[2] Paul Shamplina, ‘How to avoid a bad tenant and make your property pay’ seminar, Landlord Investment Show, 21.06.16

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