Sunday, November 29, 2009

Say ‘cheese’

Housing fraud informants to receive rewards of up to £250

Landlords will be told to make regular audits of their tenancies, set up hotlines to enable anonymous reporting, and adopt a range of measures including taking photographs of new tenants to keep on an electronic tenancy agreement database.

Posted by devo @ 10:39 PM (1819 views)
Please complete the required fields.



20 thoughts on “Say ‘cheese’

  • little professor says:

    This is only for council houses and housing associations, not private landlords.

    Illegal subletting of council houses is rampant, and costs us taxpayers huge amounts each year. I know of loads of couples who live together without declaring it, both claiming a council house each. They live in one, and illegally sublet the other to whoever will pay the most. This leads to council flats being used as drug dens, and holds up housing places for those desperately in need.

    I’d fully support any steps taken to stamp down on these leeches.

    Reply
    Please complete the required fields.



  • “I’d fully support any steps taken to stamp down on these leeches.”

    Divide and rule.

    Reply
    Please complete the required fields.



  • This is not quite what it seems from devo’s description.

    I know of at least two council house tenants who have subletted at market value and pocketed the difference between their rent and the rent they’re charging. It’s a joke, especially in central London where some long term tenants are making a small fortune, on top of exercising their right to buy the house outright after a number of years.

    Those people effectively backstop the private rented market by creating an artificially high rent. They are leeches of the lowest order and I for one am in for £500.

    Reply
    Please complete the required fields.



  • “I for one am in for £500”

    Why not send videos to Harry Hill and double your money?

    Reply
    Please complete the required fields.



  • Everyone’s a BLTer. Who pushed this mindset via the fullest of media force on the now lazy and desperate people of Britian?

    The powers to be have created a selfish cheating society which has been lead by prime example. What goes around comes around.

    Cash for questions.

    Cash from MPs second homes.

    Cash from council houses. Everyone is ripping off the taxpayer. Solve this problem first.

    Reply
    Please complete the required fields.



  • The easy way to do this is to get neighbours to snitch on each other. Post letters to all council / housing association properties, stating something like: “According to our records, your neighbours should be Mr and Mrs X. Can you confirm that this is correct? If not, you may be entitled to £250.”

    Knowing this government, they’ll probably spend millions on consultants and hire thousands of clipboard-toting inspectors instead.

    Reply
    Please complete the required fields.



  • Who out of the urban dwellers here really knows who their neighbours are? I can describe one of my immediate neighbours but no idea what his name is. The rest are just ships passing in the night.

    Simple way to do this is to cross reference tenancies against databases for benefit or PAYE. Most of the tenants to whom the properties are sublet are under the false impression their landlord owns the property so when they take employment or claim benefits, they see no need to lie about their address.

    I can’t understand why the various government agencies spend a fortune on [email protected] bespoke IT systems when simple, robust Oracle databases would actually work and would enable these kind of cross references to be carried out easily.

    Reply
    Please complete the required fields.



  • tenant super,

    That kind of cross-checking is precisely what the Audit Commission does. If they would just cross-reference PAYE / benefits data with DVLA expensive car purchases, they could uncover a fair few dodgy goings-on too.

    Maybe you don’t know your neighbours, but you might have a rough idea how long they’ve lived there? If you receive a letter from the council asking whether Mr and Mrs X have been living there for 15 years, you could reply that you don’t know their names, but you are fairly sure that the present tenants only moved in last month. It won’t snare everybody, but it would at least help the council narrow their search.

    Reply
    Please complete the required fields.



  • The Post Office can sort this out!

    I bought a new build house, first owner etc etc, and put in a claim for single discount.

    A few months after moving in, and after receiving bills for somebody who gave my address on purpose or by accident, let’s call him Mr x , I got a letter from the council asking me to call them. I called and they told me that a Mr x was living also at my address, and therefore I would have to refund the single persons discount.

    The only way the council could have got wind of Mr X was by having Royal Mail read electronically to whom mail was addressed to!

    A simple link into the council house database should harvest great results.

    Big Brother really is here.

    Reply
    Please complete the required fields.



  • Perhaps an ID number branded on our foreheads is the way forward?

    Reply
    Please complete the required fields.



  • Perhaps an ID number branded on our foreheads is the way forward?

    Reply
    Please complete the required fields.



  • Turkeys vote for Christmas, it would appear.

    Reply
    Please complete the required fields.



  • I’m struggling to understand where you’re coming from Devo. Divide and rule? Divide and imprison preferably. Fraud is theft and should be taken more seriously, whether it’s commited by bankers, politicians or benefit cheats.

    Reply
    Please complete the required fields.



  • I’m with devo on this one. Let’s get the big fish. Climate change (email) fraudsters first. The biggest hoax in history and yet nothing gets in the way of global taxation and the financing of the globalists agenda. A mere distraction. Let’s not even mention the possible audit of the not so Federal (where have those trillions gone?) Reserve.

    No, let’s snitch on each other and help that criminal agenda. Isn’t one happy global community going to be wonderful comrade.

    Reply
    Please complete the required fields.



  • If I received a letter from the council asking whether Mr and Mrs X have been living next door for 15 years, and there was £250 in it for me if they weren’t, and I wasn’t sure; I would reply stating I didn’t think they were living there on the off-chance I got it right and got the dosh.
    Still, I do think this would work in settled suburban communities (though the subletting problem is more common in cities, especially London) and not everyone has my marked lack of an internal moral compass.

    Reply
    Please complete the required fields.



  • Why don’t the local authorities deal with this issue themselves? Oh yes of course, they are cost cutting so it’s cheaper to let us do it

    Reply
    Please complete the required fields.



  • If 10,000 properties are recovered and half of them through neighbour’s reporting, that would be £1.25 million at £250 per snitch. But they would still have to send the fraud officers to check and gather evidence and pay for the eviction process in court. I am unsure this is cost-cutting as there must be cheaper ways.

    Reply
    Please complete the required fields.



  • mark wadsworth says:

    Nope. The way to do it is simple.

    The council posts a letter to every council house telling the occupants that it is a council house, available to rent for £x, and that if any tenant is paying more than this to an absentee landlord, he can save himself a few bob by regularising matters and paying the lower rent to the council instead.

    As a separate issue, those council block where the market rent is five times the social rent should be let out at market rent and the proceeds used to pay for new social building a bit further out of town.

    Reply
    Please complete the required fields.



  • mark w @15 – (1) would work only if there were a rule that sublettees would be regarded as de facto tenants and could stay were they were. There is no such rule, so the tenant would know that he faced eviction and would, at best, go to the back of the queue for social housing and (2) just kills the idea of social housing – that ‘s OK if there’s another way to make housing affordable (within the bounds of the current system of gov’t support for property prices, but that’s another issue).

    Reply
    Please complete the required fields.



  • mark w @15 “As a separate issue, those council block where the market rent is five times the social rent should be let out at market rent and the proceeds used to pay for new social building a bit further out of town”.

    I remain unconvinced by arguments for raising rents on social housing. 93% of households in social housing earn less than 30k. In my area, over 40% have no-one in paid work. This is legislating for such a tiny minority of Social Housing tenants (who earn decent money), that most of the increase will just be paid for with housing benefit so it is just shuffling money between various government agencies. If rent is calculated as a percentage of income, more tenants will see their rent go down rather than up and there’s all the cost of checking income on an annual basis and making the calculations as well as creating a disincentive for people to better themselves. So it is unlikely to create any more income.

    Unless you are arguing for an eradication of social housing in prime spots (i.e. renting it to mid-earners or keyworkers without giving preference for need) and moving social housing out to places like Thamesmead and Newham which I think is the mayor’s ambition anyway. I agree with this in principle but don’t think it is workable – gentrification of inner city districts is a political hot potato as demonstrated on the Heygate estate where there is a lot of anger locally (There remains a vestige of the jellied eels and ‘knees up mother brown’ generation who have worked and lived in The Elephant all their lives). Any Tory or coalition run council like Southwark which starts to ship out poor people open themselves to accusations of gerrymandering.

    Reply
    Please complete the required fields.



Add a comment

  • Your email address is required so we can verify that the comment is genuine. It will not be posted anywhere on the site, will be stored confidentially by us and never given out to any third party.
  • Please note that any viewpoints published here as comments are user´s views and not the views of HousePriceCrash.co.uk.
  • Please adhere to the Guidelines

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes:

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>