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Estate Agents Attitude

(25 Posts)
Unexpectedbaby Tue 08-Nov-16 17:52:46

Ok so there is a slight chance I am being a bit hormonal here.

I am currently 31 weeks pregnant and living separately from my partner with retrospective parents. We are looking for a small place together for when baby is here and don't have much time. I enquired to some privately rented properties to set up viewings.

Hearing back from an estate agents today to check if we met the landlords criteria and once I told them I was expecting he asked my partners salary, was not interested in knowing mine. I informed him that I am the main earner, in fact could more than cover the rent just on mine and his response was 'well love unless you are superwoman you will be giving up work soon indefinitely so your salary is irrelevant'.

AIBU to think this was a really rude assumption to make?

He has no idea of my maternity package or intentions for how long I plan to be away from work and he has potentially written us off anyway. He has told me he will speak with the landlord and get back to me but I'm not holding out much hope now.

Softkitty2 Tue 08-Nov-16 20:27:54

He is an ass and you should have called him out on it

BurningBridges Tue 08-Nov-16 20:30:06

If this is a national chain I'd report it. Not sure a local office would give a monkeys.There is always the National Association of Estate Agents I have found them very good with complaints previously.

MyGiddyUncle Tue 08-Nov-16 20:34:43

Mmm...not put in a great way.

However...we are landlords. And no, I wouldn't take the income of a 31 week pregnant woman into account either. I probably wouldn't be quite so upfront about it but my honest answer is that I would far prefer tenants where their household income was not at risk of halfing over the next months or year (regardless of maternity packages...they don't last for ever and you may decide not to go back to work etc).

MyGiddyUncle Tue 08-Nov-16 20:35:48

He has no idea of my maternity package or intentions for how long I plan to be away from work and he has potentially written us off anyway did you tell him this? If you have 12 months full paid maternity leave (for instance) why not just tell him by reply to shut him up?

kerryob Tue 08-Nov-16 20:58:33

If your name is going on the tenancy you should be referenced as well. It was very rude of him to discount you

Smartleatherbag Tue 08-Nov-16 21:01:15

Bloody hell! I'd be fuming!

CotswoldStrife Tue 08-Nov-16 21:03:50

Meh - I don't think the EA handled this well at all.

In my experience, they will want you both on the tenancy anyway (more people to claim the rent off) and they insisted that I went on the tenancy when me and DH rented a property - despite me being a SAHM for almost 5 years at that point with no income! So they would seek credit references on you and your partner anyway.

He may have been thinking that their might be an issue with one tenant possibly not earning that would affect the credit reference but he shouldn't have said that out loud!

boffin9207 Tue 08-Nov-16 21:06:25

This was really rude! He has no idea of your situation at all and therefore shouldn't assume (at least not out loud).

Definitely complain and maybe look at properties with other agencies.

CotswoldStrife Tue 08-Nov-16 21:07:26

Ugh, must preview before posting - there might be an issue - I was going to say something about the EA (hopefully) not wanting to waste the credit reference fee of the tenants if their application was not going to be successful. But I don't think this would be a problem from what you've said. Whether the landlord has a preference that the EA knows something about is another aspect, although again he could have just mentioned that without dismissing your job quite so quickly!

FleurThomas Tue 08-Nov-16 21:07:28

It's discrimination. Point it out next time it happens, and threaten to go to the media.

KayTee87 Tue 08-Nov-16 21:18:55

He's an arsehole and you really should have said something.

GoldTippedFeather Tue 08-Nov-16 21:21:23

Wow Giddy, your attitude stinks. Heaven forbid one of your tenants becomes pregnant whilst they already live in your property. Also your assumptions are disgusting, I bet you don't worry about men giving up work when they become fathers. Of course you don't, because that wouldn't be stereotypical and misogynistic enough for you.

OP, you were treated appallingly. I would tell all and sundry and complain up the chain of command if possible. I hope you find an estate agent not stuck in the 1950s soon.

Shenanagins Tue 08-Nov-16 21:46:44

Vote with your feet and go elsewhere and complain!

As for the sentiment it was one we faced 4 years ago whilst buying a house and trying to get our mortgage lender to take my salary into account. We did manage in the end but it was touch and go. This was common with mortgage lenders at the time and was being challenged in court but I don't recall the outcome.

Unexpectedbaby Tue 08-Nov-16 22:34:32

I'm glad I'm not over reacting in my head. I really wish I had said something during the call but I was so in shock as to what he said. I know we may have problems finding a private let in our situation but I think it was more the assumptions that were made and the general attitude that has annoyed me.

He said he was going to speak to the landlord and call me back tomorrow and we shall see what his attitude is like then.

I am under the understanding that they look for household salary to be at least 30 x the monthly rent. If he had bothered to ask rather that being judgemental he would know that we have that even on my maternity pay.

Thank you all smile

SabineUndine Tue 08-Nov-16 22:38:16

He's an arsehole and I'd be damned before I'd put a penny of business his way. I'd also tell him so.

raviolidreaming Tue 08-Nov-16 22:42:45

I'd be damned before I'd put a penny of business his way

Same here! No way would he make commission off me now!

Scrumptiousbears Tue 08-Nov-16 22:57:49

When I was renting my property the EA wanted the tenants to be earning 3x the yearly salary. The main wage earner was the woman in my case (by a massive amount) and she didn't disclose she was pregnant. In the end her parents became guarantors.

He was rude OP but there was a reason he asked.

Note3 Tue 08-Nov-16 23:14:14

Can you wear clothing which makes you look more fat than pregnant? Reason I ask is when we applied for rentals they asked for the names and date of births and relationships of who would reside in the house.i truthfully left off my unborn as I didn't know the baby's gender let alone their name or due date. If you can get away with just looking plump on a viewing then you can apply without mentioning maternity leave...

Yes I know some ppl will take umbrage to this but if you're able to pay your way and won't be trashing the house then there's not really a problem surely

Note3 Tue 08-Nov-16 23:14:45

Birth date sorry not due date

mellowyellow1 Tue 08-Nov-16 23:26:11

I would hide the fact you're pregnant if you can. My landlord made me pay 3 and a half months deposit when he knew I was pg.

MyGiddyUncle Wed 09-Nov-16 07:27:31

I bet you don't worry about men giving up work when they become fathers. Of course you don't, because that wouldn't be stereotypical and misogynistic enough for you

I live in the real world - and in the vast majority of cases it's the woman who gives up work. If the property was affordable based on the salary of someone about to have a baby, which the law of averages tells you is likely to result in a big drop in income - yes, i'd feel very uncomfortable and look for someone else. Keeping the mortgage paid is more important to me tbh. But like pp's said, I wouldn't have said that out loud.

Unexpectedbaby Wed 09-Nov-16 08:00:03

I completely understand the position of the landlord but the issue is he didn't ask anything other than my partners salary. I wasn't even taken into account for anything and was out right told I was irrelevant because I'm having a baby.

I earn a bloody good wage and would never leave work indefinitely. I have childcare plans in place and am lucky that they will not actually be costing me anything. I'm in an extremely stable job and we exceed their salary requirements even on SMP. But the landlord will never know how desirable we are as tenants because of his estate agent.

Unfortunately I am also in a position of having very little time to prepare along with no experience in this kind of thing. Having spoken to a solicitor at work yesterday I now know I legally do not even have to disclose salary on the phone just to request a booking on a place that we may not even like anyway.

Unexpectedbaby Wed 09-Nov-16 08:01:17

Also, fortunately for me, but unfortunately for the situation, I am very much 'all baby'. No way as passing myself off as plump.

Peanutandphoenix Wed 09-Nov-16 09:02:22

What an absolute cheeky twat I wouldn't even bother answering the phone to little fuck wit today I would just go to another EA and hopefully one that isn't so bloody rude.

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