EasyRoommate user banned after advertising spare bed in his room for £1 a month to females

'I am renting another bed in my spacious ensuite bedroom for free due to autophobia, which is fear of being and sleeping alone,' the advert read

Serina Sandhu
Tuesday 10 November 2015 17:24 GMT
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The flat is in Gants Hill, northeast London
The flat is in Gants Hill, northeast London (EasyRoommate)

A landlord has been banned from a flatshare website after he advertised a spare bed in his room to single women for just £1 a month.

The reason for the unusual set-up was because he said he was scared of sleeping alone.

The user attempted to upload the advert to EasyRoommate.com earlier this month. But moderators of the website blocked it before it went live after they felt there was “suspicion around the sexual intent from the landlord”.

The website was also unable to contact him to clarify the situation, said Michael Benjamin, head of global marketing at EasyRoommate.

According to the advert, the user specified the ideal tenant for the property in Gants Hill, northeast London, would be a female student. He added that she should be single too.

An image of the bedroom that was advertised (EasyRoommate)

The advert read: “I am renting another bed in my spacious ensuite bedroom for free due to autophobia, which is fear of being and sleeping alone.”

“The tenant must be single female, clean, organised and sociable.”

The landlord's advert (EasyRoommate)

Mr Benjamin told The Independent the landlord had been banned from using the website until he made contact with the customer service team.

He explained that around five per cent of adverts were blocked before they went live on the website during the pre-moderation process. Around 1.5 per cent of adverts were removed after going live if moderators found that unsuitable changes had been made to the flatshare descriptions.

Albin Serviant, the CEO of EasyRoommate, said: “We believe that flat-sharing can be a wonderful experience, given the right conditions.”

“Because we don’t want to leave to chance, we have a dedicated moderation team working around the clock to ensure the advertised flats are genuine.”

Mr Serviant added: “As a word of advice, if it’s too good to be true, then it probably is.”

Speaking about the advert to student newspaper The Tab, Lizzy Woods, who is studying Religion, Politics and Society, said: “That’s so creepy! Fair enough if you need a roommate because of a condition like autophobia, but I doubt this condition is specific enough to dictate the need for his roommate to be both female and single.”

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