Four simple ways landlords and letting agents can make tenants' lives easier

Posted by Elijah on August 29th, 2022

Everyone understands the value of having a place to live. It should come as no surprise that being homeless is bad for one's health: it can even kill. It's also self-evident that living in damp, cold, overcrowded, or toxic conditions is a recipe for illness. However, the place you live can have a subtle but significant impact on your health and well-being.

Our research shows that tenants' health is affected by whether they feel at home, which is heavily influenced by the treatment they receive from their landlord. Over the first year of their tenancy, we followed more than 70 tenants from three different social and private housing organisations in and around Glasgow.

We discovered four simple things that landlords, Estate Agents Glasgow, and housing associations could do to reduce stress and make tenants feel more at home in their properties through interviews with tenants.

1. Maintain a positive relationship

The tenants who participated in our research stressed the importance of dealing with a named member of staff who knows them personally and understands their situation. This was especially true when tenants had previously had negative experiences:

What words can I use to describe it? I feel like I have some good people in my life now on whom I can rely, and I'm very comfortable in my current situation. There is no deception, no shady landlords, nothing like that. - Jane, 57, Glasgow, United Kingdom

When landlords foster a positive relationship with their tenants, it not only helps them settle and feel at home, but it also gives them the confidence to move on with their lives, such as finding work, reconnecting with friends and family, and trying new things.

2. Emphasis on property quality

You don't have to have seen every episode of Grand Designs to understand that the finishing touches are essential in making a place feel like home. However, everyone has different expectations, goals, and abilities.

Some tenants told us they needed a fully furnished and decorated property, while others wanted an empty shell to renovate in their own style. As a result, landlords must understand these distinctions and provide tenants with the assistance they require. When this goes wrong, it can jeopardise the entire tenancy, as in the case of this tenant, who moved into a property with severely damaged plasterwork:

The walls in here are pretty bad, and I called the housing officer and told her I was going to have to give you that house back. That's a lot of work for me... I'm extremely unsettled and anxious. I still can't sleep in it at night. - Laura, 26, Glasgow, United Kingdom

 3. Being concerned about housing costs

Concerns about housing affordability in the United Kingdom frequently focus on rent levels or fuel poverty, while other housing-related costs are frequently overlooked. Tenants expressed concern about the costs of moving, furnishing and decorating their new home, and dealing with the financial chaos that comes with a new tenancy.

Again, landlords must have a relationship with their tenants in order to understand their financial situation. Where landlords were able to offer tenants flexibility and support with paying rent and managing other housing costs, the tenancy was more likely to be sustained, which not only benefits tenants' health and well-being but also keeps landlords' rent coming in.

4. Provide a location selection

It's a cliche, but our research shows that location is crucial. When tenants have a say in where they live, it can make a significant difference in their health and well-being. Being close to friends and family is important to some people, while peace and quiet are more important to others:

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Joined: August 6th, 2022
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