Being a Rent Mum

This was how I was described recently by a young girl who was washing my hair at the hairdressers when she was listening to me talking to a tenant who had water pouring through their ceiling.

She asked what I did and I explained that I was a residential landlord and that I managed my own properties and that if the tenants that lived in those properties had a problem they called me and I sorted it out.

Her reply was ‘oh so you are like a rent mum’ as she said that if she had a problem she called her Mum who sorted it out.

When I had stopped laughing I thought about her description and decided that it was perfect.

My career as a rent mum began in April 2005 when we purchased a two bedroomed new build apartment in Sidcup as an investment.  It is a lovely apartment and the company who were marketing them had a lettings department and in no time at all they had found a tenant for us.   It did not go well she did not pay her next month’s rent, which the managing agent wasn’t aware of until I called him.

After a few heated discussions the tenant agreed to leave we then found that the managing agent had not transferred any utility bills into her name so all of the accounts were still in our name, there was a court summons for non-payment of council tax, the neighbours were convinced she had burgled their apartment and after 4 months of a tenancy our apartment had to be professionally cleaned, partially re-decorated and have all the carpets steamed cleaned.

Undeterred we prepared the apartment for a new tenant but I decided that even though I was working as a beauty therapist at the time I couldn’t do a worse job of managing it myself so we used a letting agent on a ‘tenant find’ basis and I did all the viewings, selected the tenants and began managing and I loved it.

Since 2005 our property portfolio has grown to 14 properties, which includes more 2-bed apartments and 2, 3 and 4 bed houses based in Bexleyheath, Sidcup, Maidstone and Sittingbourne, a mixture of new builds and older properties that required full renovations.

I became a member of the National Landlords Association and have found their help invaluable .