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Association launched to lobby for regulation for room letting

A new association has been launched to drive forward regulation and protection for people who rent out a room in their home and lodgers who rent the rooms.

The Lodger Landlords Association (LLA) aims to ensure lodgers are afforded the same level of protection as other areas of the private rental sector, with non-compliance being monitored and discouraged.

The LLA will be lobbying for the existence of a legal framework and wants to provide amateur live-in landlords with comprehensive guidance and education to ensure they meet their legal and safety requirements.

As well as working towards a safer sector for all, the LLA has also developed insurance solutions specifically for live-in landlords, designed to protect contents and avoid voiding existing cover when taking on a lodger. Other products include lodger deposit guard and viewing’s assistance.

‘Many live-in landlords would benefit from education and guidance on best practice, the skills that the team at the Lodger Landlords Association aim to deliver will properly equip all who desire to rent a room in their home, without the unnecessary pitfalls that not having the correct guidance can cause,’ said Richard Blanco, the London representative of the National Landlords Association.

‘Having rightly identified the need for such support, I would recommend those with lodgers take advantage of the membership, training and accreditation being offered, similarly to the NLA for the wider landlord community,’ he added.

‘With accommodation prices soaring in the UK, especially in London, fewer professionals are able afford the cost of housing in the capital and other major cities. There is an overall disregard for the safeguarding and protection of lodgers and landlords that generate over £3.3 billion pounds in the UK economy,’ said an LLA spokesperson.

Founders Jerome Mcbean and Shaun Barrett believe that there are serious concerns for deposit protection and exploitation of lodgers by landlords which also need to be addressed. They said that the launch of the LLA is a first step to addressing very real issues for both lodgers and landlords.

The LLA want lodgers to be given the protection of a clear written licence agreement and unambiguous inventory of the accommodation and for deposits to benefit from full regulatory protection within an approved scheme such as already exists in the wider rental market.

It also wants landlords to be provided with a source of best practice, guidance and education on providing lodging services while it will campaign for room rental and flat share platforms to be subject to some form of recognised regulation. Presently, platforms act as advertisements and are therefore not covered by the same rules as agents are.

Given the central role in arranging lettings and lodgings, the LLA believe the platforms need to take more responsibility in terms of vetting to prevent vulnerable parties being exploited. The LLA wants flat sharing platforms to comply with trading standards, CMA and ASA guidelines for consumers.