Julie became a member of the NLA in 2001 and an NLA Representative in 2006. She sees her role primarily as one of promoting the NLA, its aims and objectives to both individual landlords, the local authorities and other organisations with housing interests.
Today, private sector landlords play a key and vital role in the UKs housing needs and a strong and unified voice from private landlords is essential to ensure both the Welsh Assembly and central Government listen to the concerns of the sector.
Membership of the NLA enables landlords to stay up to date with current law, helping them avoid costly mistakes through either ignorance or breaches of the legislation, and assists them to become more professional when running their rental businesses.
Julie works with all the authorities, either by attending the various landlord forums they host, where she regularly speaks and gives presentations, or by attending housing policy meetings where discussion includes how the private rented sector can assist with providing much needed housing to those people who cannot, or choose not, to buy their own property.
This dialogue between the private rented sector and the local authorities is vitally important as it ensures that both landlords and local authorities get to understand each others point of view, thereby enabling them to work more closely together.
Julie became a landlord in the late 1990s when she took redundancy from the Civil Service and used the money to buy her first property. She now has seven properties, let to a mix of working and LHA families.
She and her husband run and maintain all seven properties themselves and have a motto "Our house, your home" In other words they might own the bricks and mortar but the houses are someones home.
Therefore at the start of any new tenancy the property will be handed over to the new tenant in prime condition. During a tenancy any repair and maintenance issues are dealt with promptly and Julie believes in maintaining a friendly verbal dialogue with all her tenants.
This ensures that for the most part their tenants respect them as landlords, look after the properties and remain as tenants for considerably longer than the standard 6 month term, thereby reducing costly void periods.
Julie enjoys being a Landlord, it can have its ups and downs as in any business but can also be very rewarding.