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To lie to letting agents about having a job?

(52 Posts)
ohshitwhatamIgoingtodo Mon 03-Mar-14 11:50:48

I've just received notice to leave my flat as my landlords are retiring and want to sell up.

Thing is, I am not working at the moment and so many letting agencies are saying they will not accept people on benefits. Would I be unreasonable to say that I am a student (which is true), that I earn a bit from being self employed part time and that I also receive maintenance from my ex partner (we have a DD together and that bit is also true)? Otherwise I think I'm in the shit and don't know what to do? I know there is a massive queue for council houses and don't think I really want one anyway (I am looking for work so hope I won't be unemployed for ages).

NatashaBee Mon 03-Mar-14 11:52:10

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

WorraLiberty Mon 03-Mar-14 11:52:41

Won't they ask for proof?

Why on earth don't you want a council house?

BettySwollocksandaCrustyRack Mon 03-Mar-14 11:55:06

Of course YABU. How are you going to afford your rent anyway? Mind you, I am a LL and wouldn't rent to anyone if they can't prove their income...which presumably you can't.

Maybe you need to change letting agencies to one who do accept people on benefits....either that or use the next 2 months to make a massive effort to actually get a job.

shakinstevenslovechild Mon 03-Mar-14 11:55:37

I think most places ask for proof of income, they probably wouldn't just take your word for it.

I think getting your name on the council list would be a good idea for now, at least all the paperwork will be done if you change your mind further down the line.

sparechange Mon 03-Mar-14 11:56:11

They'll want proof, and will also credit check you, so if what you say on your form doesn't stack up with the responses they get back, they will consider you to be very untrustworthy.

What about looking for a private let via local papers or gumtree?

TheDoctorsNewKidneys Mon 03-Mar-14 11:58:30

Well, you won't get away with it. You'll have to prove your income and most places will ask for a credit check as well.

WeAreEternal Mon 03-Mar-14 12:01:36

They would need to see proof if income and that you have the means to pay the rent, as well as all of your other living expenses.

But more importantly a lot of mortgage and insurance companies do not allow the owners to rent to people on benefits, they actually have clauses in the contract to forbid it. Companies that do allow it often have much higher premiums.
By lying you would potentially invalidate the owners mortgage or insurance.
Most of the time it is not a case that the owners don't want to rent to people on benefits, it's that their mortgage/insurance doesn't allow them to rent to people on benefits.

BrianTheMole Mon 03-Mar-14 12:07:49

You'd probably be better off going through the private lets in the paper and speaking to the landlord direct. I didn't normally take hb, but I did for one person as I liked her and felt she was quite honest. I wouldn't be impressed if someone lied to me though, and if you did, and couldn't provide enough proof, I wouldn't have rented to you.

HadABadDay2014 Mon 03-Mar-14 12:14:02

Wouldn't housing benefit need some sort of tenancy agreement

trufflehunterthebadger Mon 03-Mar-14 12:17:06

How do you plan to pass financial vetting as an employee when your statements won't show any income from an employer ?

Or when they ask for your payslips ?

SelectAUserName Mon 03-Mar-14 12:35:33

The only way you might avoid employer / payslip / tax return checks is if you were in a position to pay the first 5-6 months rent up front, which presumably you aren't, or possibly if you had someone prepared to stand guarantor depending on how the LA operates.

You have two months to find a) a flat which will let to HB recipients and/or b) a job. There may not be many of the former around but there are still some out there - you may have to compromise on location or amenities until you are in a financially stronger position, but you should find somewhere to live.

RestingActress Mon 03-Mar-14 12:38:20

I can understand you wanting to, but as others have said, you are unlikely to get away with it.

LuisSuarezTeeth Mon 03-Mar-14 12:39:38

If you have received notice to quit, this means you are "unintentionally homeless" and the council will prioritise you. You'd be crazy not to get on the list.

Lying about it is a) Stupid and b) very unlikely to work

bochead Mon 03-Mar-14 12:48:37

Councils have access to landlord lists sympathetic to your situation and can act often act as a guarantor on your behalf, as well as helping you with a deposit if needed - giving you a wider choice of private rental to choose from than if you insist on going it alone. They are also often the only access route to housing association properties. However they can only help you if you approach them in a timely manner.

Don't be a snob - not all council accomodation is grim, and you may not be in it long term. I started with a council flat, and went on to use right to buy to get on the housing ladder years back. Right now you need to prioritise getting a roof over your children's head before it's too late.

LuisSuarezTeeth Mon 03-Mar-14 12:50:26

Private landlords are human beings too - it's not on to try to rip them off OP hmm

ohshitwhatamIgoingtodo Mon 03-Mar-14 12:54:23

Ok. Seems like lying is out of the question then. I thought that maybe if they did a credit check the money I was getting in would show up.

What I've heard is that it takes ages to get anywhere through the council. I'm already panicing!

WhosLookingAfterCourtney Mon 03-Mar-14 13:22:49

I think it's awful that landlords can, and are intfact compelled to, discriminate in this way.

But ywbu to lie. Get on the council list - it will take less time if you're 'homeless' surely?

BettySwollocksandaCrustyRack Mon 03-Mar-14 13:37:12

I think it's awful that landlords can, and are intfact compelled to, discriminate in this way

As a LL I totally SHOULD be allowed to rent my property out to whom I want.

pluCaChange Mon 03-Mar-14 13:45:00

The credit check would presumably be done much closer to the new date, so you can't use your bank statements from now.

Also, you don't kniw which letting agent will have the property you want, so would you do several up-front credit checks, which you will have to over pay for?

Also, isn't it too much of a risk, getting a new tenancy you might not be able to pay for?

By lying, you will also cut yourself off from help available.

Sorry, it really is timeto bite tgst bullet, or go all out to get another job and/or a guarantor.

SelectAUserName Mon 03-Mar-14 13:52:35

BettySwollock If you have a mortgage, "your" property isn't actually yours until the mortgage is paid off.

Credit check / references etc are usually done once you apply for a specific property, not 'on-spec' and different LAs use different referencing methods / agencies, so until you have an application in progress you won't know exactly what information you have to provide.

Speak to the Housing Department at your council, OP, and start from there.

TickerSpecs Mon 03-Mar-14 14:11:15

You shouldn't lie. I know people seem to think LL's are very well off and all that but in a lot of cases it just true. Some very close friends of mine rented their house out through a letting agent when they had to relocate areas because of her DH's job, the people had lied and then didn't pay their rent on time. They were relying on that money to get them through every month. It financially crippled them and they are still paying the price 2 years down the line.

Adeleh Mon 03-Mar-14 14:18:52

Don't lie. It would actually be fraud, as you would be trying to get something through deception. Not worth it.

Loopylouu Mon 03-Mar-14 14:25:07

They will want proof of income.

I know how hard it is to find anyone to accept housing benefit. We only claim partial HB if a couple of hundred a month as dh is working, but it still took us a year to find anyone who would rent to us (we had to let them know about HB as dh whole wage is the monthly rent, so they wanted to know where the rest came from).

Put your name on the housing list. I wish we could but we don't qualify.

mypocketsarevide Mon 03-Mar-14 14:35:16

I just had a reference/credit check done last week. I'm self employed and I can guarantee you that you need a proof of income. They asked me for my self-assessment result calculation for 2012-2013.

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