A petition calling for Rightmove to end ‘no tenants on benefits’ adverts has reached 40,000 signatures.
The petition is the latest measure to outlaw the advertising practice of ‘no DSS’ tenants and was launched on 38 Degrees, a not-for-profit political activism organisation.
The problem of ‘no DSS’ adverts has become an increased political agenda since it was first highlighted in May last year by Shelter, they reported that 10% of letting adverts stated ‘no DSS’.
Other measures include NatWest announcing that it was reviewing its buy-to-let mortgage, they will now allow landlords to let to people who are on benefits.
There have been calls for Rightmove to follow in the footsteps of Zoopla.
In March Zoopla reported that they were going to ban adverts excluding people on benefits from their website, starting in April.
David Innes of 38 Degrees said: “Housing in the UK is in crisis. The shortage of social housing and high house prices mean more and more people are forced to rent privately and rely on housing benefit to pay extortionate rents.”
Speaking to The Negotiator Rightmove said they “believe that the suitability of a tenant should not be judged by how rent is paid and that all renters should have access to the widest selection of rental homes.”
“That’s why we provided guidance last year that letting agents should not impose blanket bans on tenants on benefits, in line with guidance from the Residential Landlords’ Association.”
“We wish there was a simple fix, but we know that currently there are restrictions placed on some landlords which means they are unable to let their property to someone receiving benefits, and where this is the case, the Competition & Markets Authority state that they should include this as information in their advertising.”
“We’ve been speaking with the government to get clearer guidance on this and as soon as any new guidance is issued, we will update all of our letting agent customers.”