October has seen a record low number of landlords, who used Paragon’s own tenant referencing service, claim on their rent protection warranty. However, Kerry-Ann Dowdell, credit management manager at FCC Paragon advises caution for those landlords who may feel that accurate referencing alone is enough to protect them from being out of pocket.
Commenting, she said: “There has been a lot of press coverage recently about this being a good time for landlords, with rents increasing and a readily available supply of tenants. There may be plenty of tenants floating around but, with the proposed cuts in the public sector and an increased likelihood of redundancies in general due to the ongoing economic climate, rent protection is now more important than ever.
“Undoubtedly, proper referencing significantly reduces the risk, but there is still the threat of a tenant losing their job and being unable to pay the rent, albeit through no fault of their own. Of course, there are also the less scrupulous people who try their luck with a fraudulent application, often due to the severe lack of social housing stock and an element of desperation.
“These numbers are also on the rise. Whilst we have, in the past, managed to obstruct several of these submissions during the referencing process, there will always be a small number of well informed individuals who are successful in slipping through the system.”