Nearly two-thirds of landlords would prefer to be called something else, new research has revealed.

Broker Mortgages for Business canvassed the sector and found that only 36% preferred to be called landlord, with 43% opting for ‘small housing provider’ and 7% warming to ‘rental accommodation provider’.

These attitudes mirror developments in the US, where many buy-to-let business people have called on the media to stop using the word landlord, largely because it has become associated with negative connotations such as ‘slum’ and ‘rogue’.

Three quarters of the landlords in the UK who responded said they felt “unfairly portrayed as this generation’s financial bogeyman”. 

But only 8 per cent felt that landlords were not financial bogeymen at all while the remainder accepted that their notoriety might not be entirely unwarranted.

landlords gavin richardson

“Sections of the media have vilified the buy-to-let community,” says Gavin Richardson, MD of Mortgages for Business (pictured).

“The government has hammered them – think Theresa May’s 3% Stamp Duty surcharge and other tax deterrents. 

“It’s got to the point where the buy-to-let community doesn’t want to be associated with the term ‘landlord’ anymore. The term carries much more baggage than it once did. No wonder the community wants a rebrand.”

Richardson also says landlords are now significant contributors to the exchequer’s revenues following recent tax rises but that hammering landlords has not prompted a huge shift in first-time buyers entering the housing market.

“Frankly, the Government should be championing landlords and lauding their contribution to the housing sector – landlords are bailing the Government out,” he adds.

Read more about mortgages.


  1. “Small Housing Provider” lol.
    It’s not the name that’s the problem. It’s the Government & so called housing charities whose attitude stinks that is the problem. The prejudice they display would be illegal to anyone else.

    • Dave, I am presuming you are a tenant, I’m sure you will tell me if you aren’t! If you are a landlord? Strange thing to say! If you’re neither, you know nothing about this sector and it doesn’t help making these comments. Let’s guess you are a tenant! Then how about us LL sell up, agents go out of business, where do you go then, presumably you’ll be buying your own house! Good luck

  2. The terminology sits comfortably with the attitude displayed by all concerned: tenants, central government and local government. We are villains who should be persecuted at any opportunity and yet the government has no better alternative. They want it both ways. The arbiter is that more voted can be had from tenants than landlords

  3. My suggestion for LL is to become lodger LL.

    Essentially residential homeowners who take in lodgers.

    It would be possible for most LL to occupy multiple residential homes.

    1 day per month as a minimum is all that is required.

    It is far easier to make profit from multiple lodgers than tenants.

    Of course it would invariably only be possible for LL to have 2 resi properties.

    But it would be far more profitable than being a normal LL.

    Of course no letting to families could be allowed as maximum profit from lodgers requires them to be single and unrelated.

    No more than 3 lodgers in a 4 bed resi property as the homeowner would occupy the 4th bedroom once per month.

    As no more than 4 unrelated occupiers means no HMO Mandatory licensing.

    Perhaps Additional Licensing might be required in areas where it is required.

    I have yet to see a homeowner being required to Additionally Licence.

    So converting from being a LL to a lodger LL is an effective letting model NOT subject to the idiocy of tenant requirements.

    Many LL could easily convert their property portfolio to resi homes.

    Mostly by selling some; converting to resi mortgages or paying down BTL mortgages.

    Most LL could easily reside in a property once per month.
    That way the 3 lodgers remain lodgers and NOT tenants.

    It WON’T avoid CGT as HMRC will consider you are operating a business from your multiple homes.
    Only one of them will qualify for PPR tax relief.

    Plus you will have to declare lodger income as only one resi property will qualify for RFRA on £7500 of lodger income.

    But there would be no issues in evicting rent defaulting lodgers.

    Usually 1 month Notice to Leave is given.

    No Court Action required to remove a lodger.

    Downside to a lodger set up is the usual churn that you don’t tend to get with single household tenants.

    But not being subject to tenant regulations is well worth the additional churn hassle.

    LL need to seriously consider converting to lodger LL.
    A far more resilient business model especially in light of the unmet and increasing demand for rooms.

  4. Why use one word when three will do?

    Good comment Jez; Dave, we landlords are not all bad – most want to provide a good service and place to live for a reasonable return on our investment; probably what you want if you have savings or a pension fund.

  5. Isn’t anyone providing a service for a charge a sociopathic parasite!?

    That is how all business works.

    It cannot be that only those who provide residential accommodation can be deemed parasites.

    Supermarkets are a major parasite.

    Their whole parasitic business model is based on the need for food the same as LL meet the need for accommodation.

    There is nothing wrong with operating a parasitic business model.
    It is how all business models work.

    I can’t see how any business would set up to offer goods and services for free!!

    What idiots like Dave resent is that they have to pay other people to provide accommodation for them.

    The likes of Dave want free or heavily State subsidised rental accommodation.

    In a Utopian world an admirable aspiration.

    Just in the real world will never happen.

    Calling LL

    Private Rental Housing Providers is far more descriptive of the service that LL offer.



    Nobody could dispute such a descriptive term for residential LL.

    The term LL has bad historical connotations going back to feudal times when LL literally controlled tenants.

    For some reason people seem to resent those who provide rental accommodation but not those who provide food.

    Both are providing a desperately needed service but there is very little ire reserved for supermarkets by those who use the supermarket service but there is plenty for PRHP………………………..go figure!!?

    I’m surprised that it is NOT recognised by society that PRHP are part of the housing solution.

    A mix of owned; social and private rental homes gives all in society the opportunity to avail themselves of the form of tenure they would like.

    There may not be sufficient supply of the different forms of housing provision.
    But that would NOT be the fault of PRHP who simply respond to the market as it is.

    Govt could for example massively subsidise homeownership and build millions of social homes.
    The Tory Govt refuses to do this for the required amounts which leaves PRHP to pick up the pieces and provide what is needed.

    If it wasn’t for PRHP there would be literally millions of homeless.

    Like it or not Govt uses PRHP as a giant bandaid for the inadequacies of Govt housing policies and then they have the cheek to attack those PRHP who have stepped up to provide the suitable rental accommodation!!

    You honestly couldn’t make it up!!!

    The Govt attacks on PRHP are now causing them to sell up.

    There is no real logic to what the Govt is doing.
    It needs PRHP yet is doing everything it can to put them out of business!!!……..que!?…….as Manuel used to say a lot.

  6. I simply don’t care what moniker you want to give me. As a female portfolio landLADY of 21yrs I’ve learned to accept the wrong title….. Whatevs. I’ll still conduct my business professionally and morally and reap the rewards. Call me what you like.

  7. As per the Cambridge English Dictionary:-

    Landlord: a person or organization that owns a building or an area of land and is paid by other people for the use of it.

    Tenant: a person who pays rent for the use of land or a building.

    What’s difficult to understand in that? I didn’t get asked by the survey either. Perhaps Mortgages for Businesses will also conduct a survey for the next election winners and will conclude that the Monster Raving Looney Party will finally get in.

    In other countries I’ve rented in, it’s always been the correct terms, Landlord and Tenant, no need for any pathetic change.
    Imagine what the Landlord and Tenant Act will become? Perhaps the “Rental Accommodation Provider and User of Accommodation not Owning their Own Property Act”????? Seriously? OMG. They’d better stick to their core business of Mortgages instead of surveys I think.
    I respect my tenants and look after them well, and consequently, they pay me on time for the use of the building accordingly.


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