Landlords urged to check properties for illegal subletting

Landlords urged to check properties for illegal subletting

Imfuna is urging agents and landlords to check properties for illegal subletting as Airbnb continues to expand rapidly in the UK.

Established in 2008 in San Francisco, Airbnb now has over 2 million homes and rooms available for rent around the world. It is estimated that 80,000 British properties are earning income through Airbnb – and the number is doubling by the year. Over 33,000 of these properties are in London.

While it is not known how many Airbnb hosts are illegally subletting, the fact remains that subletting is a growing problem for landlords and agents. Many tenants do not seek approval from their landlord or agent to sublet and are in breach of their lease.  

Jax Kneppers, founder and CEO of Imfuna explains: “When there is multiple occupancy in a property, wear and tear in dramatically accelerated.  The most common damages we see in rental properties are iron burns on carpets, cigarette burns, soiled marks on baths and UPVC windowsills and frames, heat damage to polished wooden furniture, and stiletto heel imprints on wooden floors and vinyl.  

It is vital that landlords and agents make regular inspections of their properties to check that the tenants who are listed on the tenancy agreement are the only residents. At the end of the tenancy, landlords should always change the locks if the property has been sublet. Landlords can also do regular checks on Airbnb’s website to see if their property has been listed there.


In order for agents and landlords to safeguard their property against illegal subletting, perform regular property inspections with digital inspection apps like Imfuna Let. Imfuna Let not only streamlines the reporting process, it produces time and date-stamped photographs that can be used to show the presence of additional tenants who are not on the tenancy agreement. When it comes to illegal subletting, whether through Airbnb or elsewhere, software solutions like Imfuna offer technology you can depend on. Imfuna Let can be used on current Apple or Android devices.”

Howard Lester, Director of Balgores Property Group comments:: “Over the last 12 months, we have seen a growth of illegal subletting and this is causing a host of problems for landlords.  Many of these subletting tenants are not known to the landlord and have not undergone the rigorous reference checks.  Inevitably the property gets damaged with more occupants and there is the major issue of excessive wear and tear.

We conduct regular inspections on our properties and are able to assess quite quickly if there are there is illegal subletting.  The tell tale signs are excessive rubbish in the bins, extra clothes and bags, and additional toothbrushes and bedding.”

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Tony Gimple
Tony Gimple 09 Dec 2017

Linking professionalism to limited company borrowing is a flawed concept. Despite S24 etc., limited companies are the most tax inefficient way of running a property business and leave borrowers seriously...

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Evelyn Attwood
Evelyn Attwood 01 Dec 2017

It's normal. If you plan to buy a house in one of the most beautiful spots in the country you should pay a high price.

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Evelyn Attwood
Evelyn Attwood 01 Dec 2017

I think that the situation will be the same at December.

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Scott Garnet
Scott Garnet 06 Nov 2017

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richardrawlings
richardrawlings 01 Nov 2017

What has not been mentioned here is the effect of not only higher interest payments, but also that these payments are less likely to be offsettable as a business cost due to the scaling back of mortgage...

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Kelvin Lloyd
Kelvin Lloyd 09 Oct 2017

IT is up, to the Planners. If they will only give permission for bungalows on certain (suitable) sites, they will be built.

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maggie swift
maggie swift 09 Oct 2017

It's just the beginning of the shocking rise.

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maggie swift
maggie swift 09 Oct 2017

I have recently read that the bungalows can provide social housing for elderly residents in London.

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zoe glover
zoe glover 05 Oct 2017

Update! Worst company I have ever dealt with. Undervalued a Cambridge property by over 100k, wont take on any evidence of valuation including a RICS valuation done 3 years ago for the very same value...

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Paul Edwards
Paul Edwards 27 Sep 2017

Its nonsense articles such as this that make it harder to get clients to realise just how difficult the market is out there. When you see Rightmove and there are more 'price reduced' then 'new' most days...

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Tom Allen
Tom Allen 20 Sep 2017

Absolutely agree with you!

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RyanGeo
RyanGeo 18 Sep 2017

A sharp correction would be a less dramatic expression to use. That is already underway in certain sectors in Reading where I practice as Chartered Surveyor

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