If there is one area where we have failed this year, it is with the University of Portsmouth who have not attended any meetings that we attended or responded to any of our questions for over 6 months. This is understandable to some extent but not something we will accept or give up upon.
Elsewhere our members have been represented at the British Property Federation, the Residential Property Committee, the Portsmouth Housing Partnership and the PCC Licensing Governance Board among others – one committee member alone has attended 15 non-PDPLA meetings on our behalf, so we are not operating in isolation and we do take every opportunity to make the case for the small landlords in Portsmouth and surrounding areas.
Closer to home we have also hosted PDPLA involvement in 2 student Housing Fayres, worked with local charities to find solutions for housing the homeless, introduced Landlords Breakfasts, formalised the Accommodation Wanted service, worked hard to extend the offers available to members from our suppliers and successfully represented individual members in a number of cases – both in regard to problem tenants and also, when unfairly challenged by local authorities.
Sadly, we have ended our efforts to create a bond scheme or to provide similar support to make it easier for local charities to find homes for homeless people - after nearly 2 years trying to make this work, we have had to admit it is not a question of money, but of support and until the appropriate agencies are able to provide it, the most vulnerable cannot cope in the private sector.
I hope that you agree with me - the committee members of the PDPLA have done an excellent job on your behalf and if they are willing to continue to do so, I would ask you to attend the AGM and vote for their re-instatement.
The year ahead is going to be challenging. Post-affiliation our incomes will be much reduced and we will be much more dependant than ever on the income we receive from member insurance – so I urge every member to use Boswells for their insurance or to speak to a committee member to let them know why you think your alternative is better. We also have decisions to make about whether to continue to use The Queens, whether we can afford for our Christmas Social event to be free to all and need to review some of our other expenditures. But that is good business practice and not grounds for doom and gloom.
For a small organisation, we punch above our weight and with your help and assistance, we hope to be able to continue to do so.
Please come along to the AGM and let us know your thoughts and if you are able to assist in anyway on any of our initiatives, you will be more than welcome.