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View Full Version : Polish tenants - advice please



Loulou
25-01-2008, 05:20 AM
Hi

I have 3 Polish girls that have been emailing/calling me that want to rent one of my houses,the only problem is they are still in Poland and won't be here until the 1st February.

They have jobs lined up to start at Heathrow airport and have sent me their contracts to prove this,they have also sent copies of their tickets showing that they are coming.They seem nice and say they want to know they are coming to stay somewhere clean and safe,that they can't stand the thought of having to stay in a B&B whilst they look around for houses and would rather secure one whilst still in Poland.This all seems fair enough.My partner would rather we rented it out to someone already in the country so that we can check them out properly which is sensible,but so far all of the people that I've spoken to about renting the house have been a little "odd" and I'm sure they wouldn't pass the credit/reference checks.

Has anyone else ever had any experience of this before ? They want to get off of the bus,walk into my house,give me £2,300 and move in.My gut feeling says to let them have it,but is this right ?

Many thanks in advance for any advice you may have.

Ericthelobster
25-01-2008, 07:49 AM
My partner would rather we rented it out to someone already in the country so that we can check them out properly which is sensible,but so far all of the people that I've spoken to about renting the house have been a little "odd" and I'm sure they wouldn't pass the credit/reference checks.All I'd say is that it's a classic mistake to panic that you can't find the tenants you want, and to then compromise your tenant-vetting procedures.

These new applicants are unlikely to be able to pass your checks either, given that they are from overseas, and you haven't even met them yet!

pete's properties
25-01-2008, 08:22 AM
I tend to agree with the above and can't understand why you are having trouble finding good tenants.

Have you tried a good agency, preferably a member of the ARLA?

In my limited experience a good agent saves you all the hassle of worrying about tenants and credit checks etc. They are also usually experienced enough to know what to do in a situation like this.

The 10% or so that they earn is in my opinion money well spent.

:)

holdenhurst
25-01-2008, 08:58 AM
Loulou,

I had a similar situation.

I have a nice 2 bed flat in N London, but for some reason it did not let easily.

I put an ad in the paper and a chap called me, said he wanted it for 6 months and would pay all 6 months upfront.

To cut a long story short, 8months later I,m chasing him for the rent, had £2K solicitors bills and had to go through the whole legal process to get rid of him.

BEWARE!!

BW

Loulou
25-01-2008, 09:30 AM
Thanks for the advice.I haven't tried an agency yet as I haven't used one for a couple of years because the last one I used was so awful they put me off !
They never told me the heating had completely broken down for over 2 weeks,when there was a family with small children living in one of my flats and then they gave me the tenant from hell (they said they had checked her out) she brought cockroaches with her,never cleaned or hoovered once,ran up tens of thousands of pounds of debts,was very difficult and then started not paying (luckily we has already given her a section 21 by then) and then to top it all the agency let her use her deposit to pay her last months rent,leaving me scrubbing for 2 days solid as I had no money to keep back from her deposit to pay someone to do the cleaning !

I'm sure not all agencies are that bad,maybe I'll have a phone around and speak to a few.The problem letting the house seems to be that it is a large 4 bedroom and most people around here seem to want 2 bed flats.I'm sure it will go eventually,I just feel a little bit sorry for the Polish girls-I must be going soft...

johnboy
25-01-2008, 10:40 AM
Dont take the risk

pete's properties
26-01-2008, 08:47 AM
Loulou,

I had a similar situation.

I have a nice 2 bed flat in N London, but for some reason it did not let easily.

I put an ad in the paper and a chap called me, said he wanted it for 6 months and would pay all 6 months upfront.

To cut a long story short, 8months later I,m chasing him for the rent, had £2K solicitors bills and had to go through the whole legal process to get rid of him.

BEWARE!!

BW

I read similar stories in some of the buy-to-let books, which all seem to say to beware of anyone being overly-enthuisiastic about your property to the point of offering some cash upfront above the normal amount, and/or giving you some sob story about "difficult circumstances".

:)

pete's properties
26-01-2008, 08:51 AM
Thanks for the advice.I haven't tried an agency yet as I haven't used one for a couple of years because the last one I used was so awful they put me off !
They never told me the heating had completely broken down for over 2 weeks,when there was a family with small children living in one of my flats and then they gave me the tenant from hell (they said they had checked her out) she brought cockroaches with her,never cleaned or hoovered once,ran up tens of thousands of pounds of debts,was very difficult and then started not paying (luckily we has already given her a section 21 by then) and then to top it all the agency let her use her deposit to pay her last months rent,leaving me scrubbing for 2 days solid as I had no money to keep back from her deposit to pay someone to do the cleaning !

I'm sure not all agencies are that bad,maybe I'll have a phone around and speak to a few.The problem letting the house seems to be that it is a large 4 bedroom and most people around here seem to want 2 bed flats.I'm sure it will go eventually,I just feel a little bit sorry for the Polish girls-I must be going soft...

There are good agencies out there and the effort you put into looking for tenants could be put to tracking the good agencies down.

Maybe read up on the organisations they need to belong to; find out how long they have been established and even ring a few posing as a tenant to see how you feel about them: are they well mannered and attentive?

It's harsh to say but I don't think you should ever feel sorry for potential tenants: you are doing whoever moves in a service by providing them with a home. That is as far as your obligation goes! Serve them well because they are a customer but don't be a sucker!

:)

Surrey
26-01-2008, 10:07 AM
If you don't want a managed service, go for a tenant find only. This way, the tenant will be dealing with you directly for all rent collection and maintenance issues, and it's often slightly cheaper than managed or rent collection services.

gary7
26-01-2008, 10:34 AM
Interesting thread, personally I would not let to 3 non UK nationals who are just arriving in the country - they would need to have some established UK credit history first! The one exception I would make is if they paid for the full tenancy term up front, e.g. 6 or 12 months rent in advance.

I also use letting agents, where I have a good local agent. Other times I let the properties myself ... just do an internet search for advertise properties to let or something like that and you will find some free advertising resources.

Beeber
26-01-2008, 11:16 AM
Even if you set aside the eastern european tenants alleged tendency to cut costs by subletting to extra tenants, is it wise to accept an offer from tenants who haven't even viewed the property? What if they turn up and feel disappointed with the property or area?

Your post gives the impression that you are prepared to wait for payment of the deposit/first months rent on the day rather than in advance and doesn't mention a holding deposit.

So what would you do if they turned up and presented a cheque that later bounced because carrying £2,300 in cash to you on the day is impractical?

Their offer sounds tempting but also risky.

Perhaps the options of them paying a higher deposit and rent paid in advance or guarantor (probably difficult for them to provide) might offset the risk.

Pobinr
26-01-2008, 17:22 PM
You'd want to interview someone for a job. Same with tenants. I'd never let to someone I hadn't met. Advertise on www.torent.co.uk & you should get enough on your doorstep responding. This is best site & you can store your property adverts & just make live when they become vacant. Do a search for flats to let & you'll see it also has a high profile on Google.

Loulou
27-01-2008, 06:08 AM
Thanks for all of the advice.

I think I was panicking slightly ! They want to turn up and give me £2,300 cash which is tempting when you haven't had much interest.
They sent me their contracts of employment and I can't believe they will be earning so little,I used to earn more than that years ago for working part time !
I have emailed them and explained that unfortunately their wages will not allow them to live comfortably in such a large house as it will cost them more in council tax and bills and that they would be better of in a 2 bed flat which will be much cheaper.
I have 2 lots of people coming today for a viewing so fingers crossed,one of them will take it.

jeffrey
27-01-2008, 13:46 PM
Be warned by threads about Vietnamese tenants (pay whole term's rent in advance, rip house to bits, instal drug-growing/production facility).

Goldieboy
29-01-2008, 14:18 PM
Oh dear - we have just agreed (subject to credit checks etc) for a Polish couple to rent our flat for 6 months. They have come to us via an agency and are both in employment. I am worried now. Although all the checks in the world and you still can't be sure that they are not going to end up costing you money.

jeffrey
29-01-2008, 14:21 PM
Wel, not all Poles/Vietnamese are baddies. I imagine that it's only a minority who cause the problems, just as with any other nationality (inc. British)- but take care anyway and seek good references (e.g. their employer?)

C4AML
29-01-2008, 18:50 PM
Hi there,

mmmm I would be wary of this as I have had problems with debt being run up and no last address or forwarding address.

If you are not in a hurry I would hold out for folks in the UK for peace of mind more than anything. You could tell the girls that you may consider them in the future if they had current references from other accommodation in the UK first of all.

rinomanfroni
19-02-2008, 08:24 AM
So did the three Polish girls show up?

ah84
19-02-2008, 08:28 AM
Oh dear - we have just agreed (subject to credit checks etc) for a Polish couple to rent our flat for 6 months. They have come to us via an agency and are both in employment. I am worried now. Although all the checks in the world and you still can't be sure that they are not going to end up costing you money.

Had 2 polish tenants renting single bedsits. One still with me, and no problems so not necessarily bad.They are hard working people.

rinomanfroni
19-02-2008, 08:35 AM
Had 2 polish tenants renting single bedsits. One still with me, and no problems so not necessarily bad.They are hard working people.

Yes it's true, usually Polish people are quite honest and they are hard workers... they just get paid too low in their country for the jobs that they do (which does not necessarily mean they are unemployed in Poland), so that's the reason they move elsewhere.
I have two Polish friends, and they all work even during the weekends.

frednick
19-02-2008, 20:42 PM
I rent several houses out to Polish tenants and they are excellent payers and look after the place better then us Brits, but from my own experience anyone who offers 6 mths or so rent in advance is normally trying it on.