Tenants’ group shuts down property investment workshop
Living Rent has hailed the success of its actions last week after protesters from the tenants’ union shut down a property investment workshop in Edinburgh.
The event, which was to be hosted by the BBC’s Martin Roberts, of Homes Under the Hammer fame, boasted that it would teach landlords to “maximise their profits”, “make money while they sleep,” and “live the life they deserved”, but the protesters argued that this means driving up rents and forcing tenants into poverty.
Around fifty protesters gathered outside, chanting and flyering members of the public, while a number of protesters inside the event challenged the organisers over the consequences of this approach to housing. After roughly 30 minutes, the organisers called off the event and attendees were ushered out.
The union said these sorts of events underline the need for the Scottish Government to introduce rent controls, which they say are necessary to stop tenants being forced into poverty by “sky-high rents”.
Eve Rogers, one of the protesters inside, said: “The presenters point-blank refused to face up to questions about how their parasitic, speculative pursuit of profit are directly linked to the housing crisis. These people want to make fortunes while they sleep, but they can’t pretend that there are no ethical questions behind what they’re doing. Nor can they expect tenants to simply sit back and let it happen while our lives are made a misery.
“This approach - treating a house as some kind of investment, rather than as a home for people to live in - is the root cause of so much homelessness, poverty, and shocking living conditions. But housing is a fundamental right, and that’s why we’re demanding the government introduce rent controls across the country.”