We can’t Stein Peter!

Non-essential building work continued throughout the first month of our tenancy, and we agreed that we would pay 3/4 rent, originally suggested half rent. Both bathrooms are cramped, using the toilet means sitting at an awkward angle or with your leg jammed under the sink. Mould in the walls was painted over and we weren’t told about it. It’s evident their trying to rent a 3 bedroom house to 6 people.

Rent: 315

Deposit Returned?: Still living at the hole in question

Kevin Landsey landing on his feet!

Kevin Landsey (Cardiff Student Lettings)

Absolutely brilliant, he let us crack on, was lenient with fair wear and tear, was there to answer any queries at any time of the day and even said on multiple occasions that he would love to live with a bunch like us. Lovely, stand up guy, with no hidden motive, if you’ve got Mr Landsey as a landlord then count yourself lucky, especially if you like an independent life where, if you break something, just replace it, legend of a bloke.

Rent: Info Not Provided

Deposit Returned? Still living at the hole in question

Matthew won’t leave you on the Todd!

We lived at one of Matthew Todd’s properties last year and he was an incredible landlord. The house was in really good condition and whenever we had issues he would come and fix it usually that day. A genuine and honest guy who loves a chat and is a great landlord. He doesn’t have that many properties in student land but if you are lucky enough to get one then I am very jealous!

Rent: £340

Deposit Returned?: Yes

Top City Living with Dondi

Lived in one of Dondi’s flats in the centre of Cardiff. The flat had everything that was need and was up to date and modern. It was in a great location – only 5 minute walk into the city centre. If we ever had any maintenance issues with the flat, Dondi would send someone round/visit herself as soon as possible which was great. She was a very fair landlord and was always contactable.

Rent: £650
Deposit Returned?: Yes

Example of what an illegal tenancy agreement looks like!

Although we mostly post reviews we are always happy to chat to people about their rights when it comes to renting properties. We aren’t trained in this, nor are we lawyers. (Tbh we just hate landlords)

Someone approached us after reading our comment on a CPS review. In it, we explained that charging tenants to change the names on their tenancy agreement is illegal. The person we were speaking too showed us a copy of their agreement and wanted to know the exact law we were referring to.

In September 2019 Welsh Government changed the laws regarding tenancy fees. Under the new law, it is illegal to charge the tenant any fees related to signing a contract, renewing one, inspecting the property and administration fees. You can check the full list out here! Included in the full guidance found here is a paragraph relating directly to changing names on contracts:

“Landlords or agents are unable to contractually require a payment from a tenant to change a joint tenancy agreement to reflect a change of sharer, should one tenant leave and be replaced by another.”

“Should either party wish to amend a tenancy agreement, a landlord or agent cannot contractually require a payment for the amendment.”

This makes these elements in a tenancy agreement illegal if it was created and signed after September 2019. If this happens to you we recommend you check out our where to find help page. In this case, we recommended the tenant contact ACORN Cardiff and Rent Smart Wales to help them out.

Don’t rent with Julian Turner unless you want to be body-shamed on Facebook

Landlords always manage to impress us with how shitty they are! Today’s lovely example comes from Julian Turner who thought it’d be a fantastic idea to show off one of his properties on Overheard at Cardiff University.

For the sake of dignity, we’ve blurred the images but Julian Turner clearly didn’t give two fucks. One of the images even included the poor tenant’s details and the address of the property. Regardless of how a tenant leaves a property this kind of shaming is not acceptable. It’s a GDPR nightmare and he’s an idiot for thinking this was appropriate.

It’s also repulsive they tried to shame them from blood-stained sheets when that’s a natural part of having a period and landlords should be understanding that leaks happen. God knows I’ve trashed a few mattresses and felt like shit about it afterwards. I’d be mortified if my landlord shared images online about the situation.

Rent Smart Wales has their details listed so you can avoid them. [Update] Since posting we have been contacted by Jac Y Do Limited and they claim Julian Turner has no association with them and they only operate within Ceredigion.

Since the address was in the original images we were able to look that up too.

What a joy! The address IS NOT REGISTERED. Julian Turner has broken the law by renting this property so he really should be avoided at all costs. We are going to look into reporting him but if you have rented from Julian Turner in the past please contact us at [email protected] and we can help you out. No one should be living in an unregistered property and you have rights.

Signing up with 👑 Kingstons? You’ll be their peasant

Genuinely the worst company I have ever had to deal with. When it came to move-in day, I was unable to get into my room as no-body in the office had a key for my locked bedroom. I had to wait 3 hours with my Dad in the car outside until the landlord could arrange for a handyman to come and change the lock on the door and let me in. My Dad then had to dive back to my hometown 3 hours delayed- no apology from the office about the wait or the fact they had lost the key to the bedroom.

When the door was finally opened it was clear they had not made any of the changes they had agreed to in the contract signing. It had been agreed that the single bed in my room would be upgraded to a 3/4 bed and a desk and chair would be provided for my housemate. They had been warned several times of when we would be moving in. Throughout the year we had several issues that were either not solved or took months for them to get round to. This included my housemates’ desk collapsing in her hands and an incredibly moldy fridge which was not hygienic enough to keep food it when we arrived. My bedroom was very small and had no insulation so got very moldy after a few months of living there, it also gave me a bad chest from sleeping in the room overnight. After complaining to Kingstons someone from the landlords’ office came to clean it which was great until she happily told me that if the mold returned she would be charging me and that I needed to keep my window open. It was February and I could see my breath in my room as it was.

When moving out of the house in June we cleaned it thoroughly but had to fight for 2 months to get our deposit back as they would not accept the fact that we had closed our water account when returning home during the pandemic. When finally receiving the list of ‘damages’ we were shocked to be charged a whopping £158 each (there are 4 of us) including £100 for cleaning, £28 for each de-weeding the garden and £46 each for an inch stain on the worktop. When we queried the damages we felt completely unjust, including the stain, some of the charges were dropped but we were told that the landlord was going to have to replace the whole unit. I do not doubt in my mind this will not be replaced. We have ended the year losing £120 of our £350 deposit each for a house we really looked after. A disappointing and difficult company to deal with needless to say we did not sign with them for the third year.


Rent: £305

Deposit Returned: Partially

Dondi’s back, back again

Very nice one bed flat, furnished to high standard. Been in this property for two years now and am very happy with the landlady. Dondi is always easy to reach and promptly replies to any queries. Had some tiles cracking in the bathroom and a broken radiator recently which were sorted quickly without any issues. Can only highly recommend renting with her!

Rent: £900
Deposit Returned?: Still living at the hole in question

Dondi Eagles flies the extra mile!

My flat was a beautifully furnished in the city centre round the back of the Mercury Hotel. Whenever we had a problem we could contact Dondi directly and it was solved without any hesitation. We also received our full deposit back without question as well. I had to get removal people to pack up my belongings because I live overseas, even though this was after my contract she helped out without taking anything from the deposit. Would highly recommend anyone to rent any of Dondi’s properties!!

Rent: £600
Deposit Returned?: Yes