"Control needed for rent levels": Moneywise readers best comments and letters in May 2019

18 June 2019

Each month we publish the best comments, emails and letters from our readers the star of which will win a £50 M&S giftcard. Here are the best of May 2019

No-nonsense advice on direct cremations

Thank you so much for your article on direct cremations (May 2019 issue).

I sadly lost my grandmother last year – she had planned ahead and paid for her own funeral in advance as she did not want any of us to worry about the expense of paying for it. However, we didn’t know until after she had died that she had struggled with monthly payments for her funeral plan and went without other things she needed as her only income was the state pension.

Had my grandmother known about direct cremations, I am sure she would have opted for one as she wanted a non-religious ceremony with no fuss – this type of funeral would have been ideal and significantly cheaper than the funeral she paid for.

Your article gave a very balanced view of the costs involved and a comprehensive guide to some of the services available. It will be an invaluable tool at a difficult time for those planning a loved one’s funeral, as well as being helpful for readers deciding what they would like for their own in the future.

Your articles are so often thought-provoking as well as practical and this was no exception.

RH/via email

Mixed response to ban on no-fault tenant evictions

In April, Moneywise reported on the news that ‘no-fault’ evictions were to be banned in a shake-up of housing rental sector. Several readers wrote in.

If tenants are decent, landlords would not use Section 21 to remove them. It is disgusting that landlords are unable to have control over their own property.

This will drastically reduce the amount of private property put on to the market. It seems that every obstacle possible is being put in the way of the decent landlord.

PA/ via site comments

About time. Same control needed for rent levels and increase. It’s hard to believe what youngsters have to pay in rent and the subsequent increases.

BB/via site comments

Dubious about Amazon ‘five-star’ reviews

Shoppers were warned in April that Amazon was being flooded by ‘fake’ five-star reviews. Two readers commented on this:

Read the one- and two-star reviews. They will usually be better than the five-star reviews as they will report issues. I am very dubious of five-star reviews as most of them say things I don’t believe.

I have bought products with brilliant five-star ratings and found them poor. I have bought things with low ratings and found them good. It all depends what you want and how you perceive it.

HS/via site comments

I have had reviews rejected by Amazon on the basis I’ve not followed its rules. Yet they are perfectly honest and truthful accounts of my experiences and not that contentious. There is no obvious means to challenge their decision or a real explanation about why they are rejected, but I guess Amazon doesn’t want any negative reviews about itself or its merchants.

Oddly though, I’ve just had a review accepted that reported my criticism of a seller who wouldn’t refund an item, but Amazon upheld my complaint and is reimbursing me and taking action against the merchant. That one it allowed – go figure!

YB/via site comments

Bank closures ‘disastrous’ for older people

Our feature (May issue) Help! The last bank in town has struck a chord with at least one reader:

We live in a small country town, where high street shops have suffered from the closure of our two banks, as shoppers don’t come here now.

Our nearest banks are almost 17 miles away, which is disastrous, particularly for the elderly. I am 76 and use a computer, but I won’t bank online as I don’t consider it safe.

Many elderly or disabled people are not computer savvy and are unable to travel to banks miles away.

RS/via site comments