Dawn Clarke, director of lettings and property management at Nock Deighton in Bridgnorth, says it is worth thinking about what you post on Facebook if you are in the process of looking for a new rental property.
“Social media is so prevalent nowadays that it’s only natural for landlords to use it as a means of researching tenants,” she says.
“It is something of a grey area, but if your Facebook profile is accessible to the public then there is nothing to stop people from viewing it, whether it is your prospective new boss, landlord or letting agent.
“We are aware of a number of letting agents, mostly in big cities and certainly in London, who use Facebook to check that potential tenants are who they say they are.
“They use social media as a means of verifying the information that tenants put on their application form, such as their job and current living situation and so on.
“It’s not so common here in Shropshire, Worcestershire and Staffordshire but it’s certainly something to be aware of - both for tenants and landlords.”
Dawn says she has heard stories of letting agents uncovering a variety of things about tenants using Facebook.
“The main issue that agents are looking for is people sub-letting the property which is clearly against their tenancy agreement,” she says.
“Obviously, pictures of wild house parties with smashed furniture strewn all over the place would also ring alarm bells, but landlords are generally quite reasonable and no-one is saying you should not lead an active social life.
“Like everything, it’s about being sensible and having a balance - from a landlord’s point of view, they just want their property to be well looked-after, which is ultimately in everyone’s best interests.”
For more advice about lettings and property management, give Dawn a call on 01952 290163.