Tenants back ‘name and shame’ for ‘toxic’ Dubai landlords

Master developers making public lists of service-charge defaulters to collect dues

Tenants have christened them as “toxic” landlords and that’s because the former get barred from accessing certain services/facilities since the latter is a service- charge defaulter.

The renters from these alleged “toxic” landlords say they favour the “name-and-shame” policy — now becoming a common and an effective tool for Dubai-based master developers to collect their dues.

Janice Pereira, who rented a two-bed apartment on the Palm Shoreline, says: “I never knew my landlord was a defaulter and only found out when his name was in the non-payers list.

“I had to suffer because of his [landlord’s] reluctance to pay, but I am glad at least his name was made public.”

She adds: “My landlord did subsequently pay his service charges and one thing is for certain that the name and shame policy worked.”

A Meadow’s resident, in a comment posted on an online community forum, said: “I wish there was a website where we could name and shame these ‘toxic’ landlords and managing agents so everyone could look out for them.

“I feel like painting a message on a sheet and hanging it from my front balcony.”

Another tenant, residing in the same villa community, said: “The system of one-cheque payments has to be forcibly modernised.

“Everybody should have the legal right to pay rent monthly, in part so that tenants retain some leverage.
“Right now, too many landlords take their huge cheque for a year's rent and then ignore the tenant until it's time to demand the next huge cheque.”

Last week, Emaar Properties said that most homeowners in the communities managed by them had paid their service charges after they made villa numbers of the defaulters public across its various communities.

In November last year, Nakheel took the drastic step of making the defaulter list public in Shoreline Apartment — a step that helped it collect millions of dirhams in outstanding service charges.

Emirates 24|7 reported earlier that real estate agents do not ask property owners on whether they are service charges defaulters before listing of their properties.

Many of the agents said they are not responsible if the tenant is barred from using any of the facilities in a building if their landlord turns out to be a service charge defaulter.

(Image courtesy Shutterstock)




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