LUU should lobby landlords to provide more flexible housing contracts

Passed: March 2020 (16th)

What's It About?

LUU to lobby landlords to provide more contracts which start in September, rather than July as is usually the case in the private rented sector.

We need to actively come up with a solution, for example when we banned agents who charge signing fees from the housing fair this year which led to 5 large firms dropping their rip off fees.

Why Have You Proposed It?

Students are often forced to pay up to £1000 or more in rent over summer for houses they're not living in a lot of the time.

In no other situation would people be asked to pay extortionate amounts of money for a house they've probably not moved into yet. It's a rip off and it's just not on really!

Expires: March 2023 (16th)

Submitted By: Cat Fairbairn

Officer: Community / International

Area of Work: Landlords

Updates

December 2020: Campaigning on this issue has led the Unipol board to take the decision to offer a 'Peace of Mind Promise' where students are able to withdraw from a contract up until March 1st. Lotti aims to continue pushing for the 'Peace of Mind Promise' to be extended post-COVID and for this work to be included in the work of next years' officers.

August 2020: Lotti, Community Officer, is part of a new Housing Revolution Group that in part is looking to pull together several policies related to housing and landlords. This is going to be a key part of her work for the year ahead, and something that she will work with the new Community Reps on. Welfare and International Officers are also in this group.

June 2020: Unfortunately there are no major updates to this work over the summer as a result of lots of LUU staff being furloughed (ongoing), as well as the LUU building and campus being closed. As staff return to work and the new Officer team settle into their roles this will be picked up again. Housing is a priority for Lotti, your new Community Officer, and our Landlord Forums will return in the new academic year. Our Advice Team have been supporting lots of students through Covid with housing enquiries, and some of that work will help to inform how we lobby landlords across this year.

March 2020: Idea resubmitted and passed at Better Leeds.

January 2020: Paper written on this and other housing concerns, intention is to resubmit at March 2020 Forums.

October 2019: Another Landlord Forum is being planned.

June 2019: There is appetite from Unipol to get involved with some events LUU are planning across October/November including the landlord forum. PET have been meeting with them across the last month to discuss.

April 2018: George handing over to Tom, continue to raise this at Unipol Board Meetings and Unipol Code Review Group. New Landlord Forum hosted by LUU is another avenue.

November 2017: Plan is for George - Community Officer - to raise this at Leeds Property Association Meeting in February 2018.