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  • In the Spotlight

    Boycotting Shelter is a bad move

    The problem is the likes of Shelter have a very good PR team, which none of the LL associations have. Not for this purpose any way.

    It would be interesting to hear what the NLA/RLA have to say about Shelter - can't say I've seen anything in the NLA magazine but a feature might help raise awareness?

    With every incorrect/misleading announcement that Shelter make, the correct version should be stated on the LL association pages/Twitter/Facebook.

    Leaving the battle to whoever put themselves in charge of the new association would never have worked out because they are not skilled in PR.

    Fighting fire with fire is not the way it works in politics generally. The drip-drip effect works better. I've asked quite a few people what Shelter does and they have all thought they housed people.

    Just a drip-drip tackling of this primary public misnomer would help our cause greatly. Imho it should come from the LL associations (the proper ones) as they have the budgets and legal team behind them to do it.

    Time will tell.

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    I absolutely agree good PR is vital and no campaign succeeds without. I also accept that to some extent we may not be putting our best foot forward right now. New movements take time and a lot of learning to succeed. However, the few are making an impact at least and their PR form will improve given some direction, persistence, and above all,support.

    As to the larger landlords associations. Their success in the political arena following their drip,drip, and too frequently appeasing policies has yielded no significant success in at least a decade of growing hostility. Their failure is measured in the failing resilience and self esteem of a bruised and battered PRS. They are not working! New thinking is needed and it can’t include the drip drip,appeasing policies of the unsuccessful past.


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    What should the NLA/RLA do then to make a difference for us that you feel they're not doing now?

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    I must start by saying that I'm a member of the RLA and I totally respct the way they conduct themselves both to the media and to goverment on my behalf. Furthermore, the help and advice they've given me over  the years has been excellent . So I'm not going to knock them in any way.

    However, I do agree, and I've expressed it before on PT, that the PRS needs to put the record straight every time the media come out with unjustifiable and damaging reports, which they seem to be doing with alarming frequency. I'm sure the RLA don't have the capacity to do this and, as you suggest, it's likely to cost us a few bob extra to get good PR people in to look after that side of things.

    I have to say that although I appreciate the efforts of these new guys, I thought their approach in this instance was always likely to put landlords in a bad light and turn the general public against us even more. In my opinion, there was never any chance of anything positive coming out of that exersize.

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    It’s not for me to tell either the NLA/RLA how to run their organisations. I simply know that I am far from alone in despairing of their absolute failure to stem the flow of anti Landlord sentiment or influence political debate in any substantive way.

    These organizations  must find their own way to improving their dismal achievements

    My personal thoughts might include the following, others will doubtless have their own views.

    1/ accept that past practice has not stemmed anti Landlord sentiment  or influenced political thinking and that a new approach is needed and needed now.

    2/ Robustly call out all misinformation, call out poor research, Talk up the strengths of the PRS. Resist being drawn into the apologetic.

    3/ learn from the PR tactics of the opposition eg Shelter, GR etc. Don’t flinch from exposing the bad tenants experience, or bad government experience. Always finish by pointing up the phenomenal success of the PRS.

    4/ Focus on Campaigning and good PR rather than selling insurance based products and peripheral landlord toys.

    Personally I would happily pay 3 times my annual subs to any organisation who could focus upon and pull together a fist rate PR team with the Media skills to put the record straight for landlords. No amount of talking to hostile groups or unlistening MP’s is going to produce change. We’ve tried that!

    A media assault is needed, well researched,, well delivered, incisive, relevant, and even provocative.

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    Great list and I totally agree with you on it.

    Would be great to have some feedback from it on the NLA/RLA!

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    Might we humbly have some realism?  Get real people:  Landlords will always be seen in a bad light, not much you can do about it.  Bit like traffic wardens, estate agents etc etc... To quote Proudhon, "Property is theft!" (originally La propriété, c'est le vol!).

    So, deal with it.  Or, if you don;t like people having that negative view of you, find another role..

    Best wishes to all!

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    Do you think that landlords have always been seen in such a bad light as they are today?

    I've been doing this for a long time and I can honestly say that I've only noticed this level of hatred towards landlords (not that I'm bothered personally) since Shelter, GR and Mr Corbyn have been ramping things up in the media over the last year or 18 months.

    I only see it as a problem worth counteracting because dopey politicians read that crap, see the public being taken in by it and now they've just ended-up following the crowd in wanting to exterminate these evil greedy lazy bastards.

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    So do nothing is your suggestion? Maybe you're happy with the current (and worstening) view of LL's but those younger LL's and those of the future won't thank us for doing sweet FA about it.

    Without the NLA/RLA providing a reality check to the misinformation out there views won't improve.

    But you carry on and go and count up your state provided benefits.

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    It all went very quiet on the National Landlord Alliance front over Christmas so I think it noteworthy that they have started up their campaign against Shelter again.

    Despite the previous P118 poster campaign trying to raise money for Section 24 posters, and then quietly disappearing, the NLA has copied the same idea, only not as well executed.

    Here is the first offering:



    I can't see this making any impact whatsoever.  I wonder how many people gave £100.00 to this crusade, if they were consulted on this,  and if they think they are getting value for money?

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