Informal settlements are where a signifcant proportion of urban population fnd shelter in the cities of the Global South. In some cities, this settlement type is the norm and urban residence are forced into these areas due to a lack of formal housing capacity. Housing tenure in the informal sector is tenuous and the most vulnerable of this group are those who fnd rental housing in the sector. Te idea of a slumlord within this context is one of exploitation and abuse, this study explores the slumlord tenant relationship within informal settlements in Gauteng, South Africa. Te study found that there is a symbiotic relationship between landlords and tenants where the informal economy flls a gap in the low income market. While there are issues of exploitation within the informal rental market, this large, unregulated and growing sector points to a signifcant need for more low cost housing within the formal sector.