Member Stories Rhianna Abrey 27/05/2022

'I love housing families and providing a safe home for their children to grow up and feel safe in': Sue's Story

Sue Hull has been a landlord for 22 years and owns several properties in Essex and East Sussex.

Initially, Sue entered the private rented sector seeking financial stability and an additional income which could be used to pay off her mortgage.

Since then, Sue has housed many families across Essex and East Sussex and has maintained positive relationships with her tenants. Sue has even seen children grow up in her properties, which testifies to the stability which Sue has been able to provide her tenants over the years.      

Extra help during the pandemic

In March 2020, at the start of the Covid-19 lock-down, a family of 5 were renting one of her three-bedroom properties. The family underwent financial struggles in the wake of the Government’s decision to impose far-reaching restrictions on day-to-day life.

As a result, a number of tenants saw a reduction in their monthly earnings, meaning they were unable to meet their rent obligations.  

Sue took it upon herself to defer her tenants’ rent, taking take the pressure off them somewhat. To do this, Sue covered the rental payments herself, which she did by drawing on her own savings in order to cover outstanding costs.

Fortunately, given this breathing space, both parents were able to resume work after 4 months of furlough and Sue agreed a repayment plan which allowed the family to clear their rent arrears in £50 instalments.

The same tenants now remain in her properties and, since then, Sue has agreed a 2 year no rent increase. She decided to take this step due, not only because of the adverse effects of the pandemic, but because of the cost of living crisis which continues to grip the UK.   

Sue says, “I enjoy housing large bustling families in my houses, and providing them with a good quality stable home for them to live in. And if that means that I have to look at other options in order to relieve pressure from rental payments during difficult and stressful times to ensure that my tenants have an added layer of security then so be it.

“On a personal level, I love watching the little ones in our tenant families grow into teenagers and settled adults too. It's very rewarding to see how a stable environment can, in part, have a positive impact on someone’s life.”

  • Are you a landlord who has helped tenants with rental payments? We'd love to hear your story for our award-winning members' magazine, Property. To take part simply email [email protected].