One in five landlords ‘too embarrassed’ to admit what they do

Richard Lambert
Richard Lambert

A survey of residential property investors has found that one in five are often too embarrassed to admit they are landlords.

The National Landlords Association (NLA) findings show that on average 21 per cent of landlords have been too embarrassed to admit it before. Across the UK, more landlords in the East of England and the East Midlands said they were embarrassed to admit it compared to any other region (29 per cent and 28 per cent respectively).

At the other end of the scale, the English regions with the fewest embarrassed landlords were the South East and Yorkshire and Humber (18 per cent).

Just 13 per cent of landlords in Scotland said they had been too embarrassed to admit it before – the lowest across the UK.

Richard Blanco, who lets property in London and the East Midlands, said he hasn’t always been truthful when it comes to admitting he’s a landlord: “Before becoming a landlord I thought long and hard about it because I had always disliked landlords as a student due to a bad experience I had over my deposit.

“These days I’m more upfront about it, but I tell people I work in property instead, because I still assume people won’t like me if tell them what I do.

“I also say that I work for the NLA and that we campaign to improve the private rented sector, which tends to go down a bit better.”

The findings indicate that approximately 400,000 of the UK’s two million landlords avoid telling people what they do. The NLA, which is the largest representative body for landlords in the UK, says that despite the bad press, the majority of tenants are satisfied with their current landlord and tenancy.

Richard Lambert, chief executive officer at the NLA, said: “The number of people looking to invest in property is rising all the time yet the stigma attached to being a landlord never seems to diminish.

“It’s the minority of rogues and criminal landlords that make the headlines, and this has a negative impact on everyone else.

“The majority of landlords are hardworking individuals who put their own money into providing homes for others, and they should not be ashamed to say so.”

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