Referencing fraud getting more common and sophisticated, claims TV show star

Paul Shamplina of Landlord Action says case revealed during last night’s ‘Nightmare Tenants’ show illustrates huge problems facing landlords and letting agents.

A tenant who tricked a third-party referencing company used by a letting agent into believing she earned £54,000 a year has ended up costing the landlord involved £10,000 in lost rent and eviction costs, it has been revealed.

Although not that unusual, eviction specialist Paul Shamplina says the case featured in last night’s episode of Channel 5 show ‘Nightmare Tenants, Slum Landlords’ is a good example of the increasing sophistication and frequency of rent fraud.

It also highlights the increasing number of holes in the referencing system, gaps which several letting agents have been warning recently are getting wider following the tenant fees ban.

The case of widowed pensioner and landlord Marilyn Hunter (picture, above) featured in the programme told the ten-month long and harrowing story of her fight to evict a tenant from her rented house in Godstone, Surrey.

The tenant had fallen behind with the rent, was subletting rooms in the house and, it later transpired, had used sophisticated techniques to pass referencing.

This included registering fake businesses at Companies House which listed the tenant as a director.

“Sometimes landlords think they have taken all the necessary precautions but still end up in a difficult situation,” says Shamplina(left).

“Technology has made it easier for people to falsify documents, which is why letting agents and referencing companies need to invest in even smarter technology which improves fraud detection.

“Landlords should also ask questions, ask to see the full referencing report and take time to grill down any information which does not appear to stack up.”

Blog Post from The Negotiator

See details of our Guaranteed Rent Scheme here

If you have any comments, please email the author of this article and click on the link above

Generic selectors
Exact matches only
Search in title
Search in content
Search in posts
Search in pages



Registered Office: Woodgate Studios, 2-8 Games Road, Cockfosters, Hertfordshire, EN4 9HN | Registered in England and Wales | Registered Company No. 3961047 | VAT Registration No. 752 6015 48