An online petition calling on Rightmove to ban ‘No DSS’ wording in rental adverts has attracted more than 40,000 signatures.
The petition follows on from the government’s plan to clampdown on buy-to-let landlords and letting agents posting ‘No DSS’ adverts that discriminate against tenants claiming housing benefit.
Competitor property website, Zoopla, has already announced that it is to issue ‘blanket bans against tenants in receipt of housing-related benefits’ by stopping ‘No DSS’ adverts on its platforms.
Tom Gatzen, co-founder of leading room share platform, ideal flatmate, said: “Refreshing to see one of leading names take a tougher stance on discrimination against tenants and hopefully the rest of the industry will now follow suit.
“It’s something that we moved to eradicate some time ago and we are always sure to block all adds of a discriminatory nature.”
Around 20% of people living in rented accommodation in the UK receive housing benefit.
Gatzen added: “Ultimately it’s the choice of the landlord as to who they wish to let their property to, but the UK rental market should serve all tenants regardless of financial situation, particularly those that arguably need it most.
“A proactive choice to refuse DSS tenants isn’t a million miles away from the discrimination against the Irish in the 50s and 60s by B&B owners and such regressive behaviour has no place in this day and age.
“The stigma surrounding DSS is often misplaced and in fact, for those that find themselves in such a position through no fault of their own be it the loss of a job or through illness, this prejudiced attitude can often force them into homelessness which quite frankly is despicable.”
You can view the petition by clicking here.