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Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Water boarding problems - governments fault

Any landlords who have been the subject of 'water boarding' ; a topic that we have recently reported on where over zealous collection companies try to collect monies from a landlords after footloose tenants do a runner. May be asking who's fault is all of this?

Legislation change

Well one aspect of government policy which certainly hasn't helped is the governments banning in 1999 the practice of total disconnection as an option for the water companies who are faced with users who refuse to pay their bill.

This said to be one of the reasons for bad water debts rising from around £684 million to a massive £1.2 billion.

Another is that water users are not obliged to give their personal details in order to obtain a supply. This means that water companies often have very few details by which to try and trace a potential non payer.

Surely the government must have seen this coming. If you remove a companies right to remove their services for non payment as a last resort then less scrupulous individuals know this and know that they are beyond the normal powers of enforcement.

Yet another idiotic policy where short term populism was placed before a creditable approach. The result is that water bill payers are now paying £12 extra a year to compensate for this growing debt.

Let's hope that the government will adopt some of the proposals of the Walker Review in particular forcing persistent non payers to pay up by giving the companies the ability to take the offenders to court or remove the service or both. Essentially let's ensure that landlords are no longer being put under duress just because their tenants abuse a system which no longer have sufficient checks and balances in it because of idiot policy making.

Landlord insurance

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