Freddie Poser is Director of PricedOut, the national campaign for affordable house prices
Being a renter can suck, and it seems to get worse every year with higher rents, unfair deposit deductions, no-fault evictions, application letters, and new listings being snapped up in mere seconds. What can we do? One path is to reform the rental market to give tenants more protections. Another, complementary, path is to improve the renters’ bargaining power by increasing the supply of properties on the market. But raising supply has been politically very difficult, with many reform efforts foundering on the rocks of public opposition. Street votes are different. While it might not change the world tomorrow, it might just deliver supply where other efforts have failed.Read more
Generation Rent supporter Katie tells us about the impossibility of making their house into a home in the current private rental market.Read more
The licensing of rented properties makes it much easier for tenants to enforce their rights. It also helps to tackle criminal landlords.Read more
Generation Rent supporter Gemma tells us about the fears of homelessness that come with Section 21 'no fault' evictions.Read more
Generation Rent supporter Shaun discusses the financial and emotional costs of Section 21 'no fault' evictions.Read more
Generation Rent supporter Jacqueline tells her story of facing eviction from a Section 21 'no fault' eviction during Covid.Read more
Generation Rent supporter Anna tells her story of renting while Section 21 'no fault' evictions continue.
I have been renting my studio flat for about two and a half years. I received my first Section 21 ‘no fault’ eviction notice in the summer of 2019, but it turned out to be invalid because the property lacked a mandatory license.
I received my second Section 21 notice in the middle of March last year, shortly before the UK went into lockdown. For me, the timing of this turned out to be fortuitous, because the accompanying eviction ban meant that my landlady didn’t have a chance to apply to the courts before the expiration of the notice. Despite the difficulties and reduced work hours that the series of lockdowns have caused me, the relative housing security the government afforded renters has been the silver lining.Read more
My husband and I have had an assured shorthold tenancy since 1997. I’m 65 years of age and my husband is 69. Over the years we have had to carry out repairs to the property ourselves which we have been prepared to do. Since December 2019, our landlord has been continually harassing us, removing our boundary fences and hedges, while we were away prior to lockdown. He has taken control of our garden, leaving us without any privacy whatsoever.
We used to have dogs that enjoyed the freedom of the garden but they have sadly passed away. We cannot get another dog as we wouldn’t be able to keep it contained within the garden. In fact, we now get other neighbours’ dogs and foxes coming into our property and there is nothing to stop them.
Our landlord is also removing our driveway and has left the edges in an unsafe state causing us to suffer twisted ankles and injuries when we take rubbish to our bins. One Saturday afternoon in June our landlord and his son demolished our own shed and greenhouse while our possessions were still in them. They had been in place the whole time we’ve lived here and were put there with his permission.
Everything has been done completely unannounced and behind our backs and seems to have been done to drive us out of the property.Read more
At the end of January 2020, I was made redundant. However, I was given a much appreciated redundancy package with severance pay, and was able to quickly find a new job to move into. That was however before the coronavirus and lockdown was enforced and, at the end of March, I lost this job as well. I was able to temporarily pay my rent and living costs from my original severance pay, but under the unaffordable rent costs in London, these savings soon dwindled away.
In good faith, and in an effort to avoid debt, I contacted my landlord, requesting that, with the allowances property owners had been given by the Government, I could have a rent reduction until I found another job. My request was met with an outright rejection, and I quickly started receiving aggressive letters from my landlord’s solicitors, demanding that I pay the rent in full. This was impossible, and I was forced to terminate my tenancy in London and move away.Read more
Finding a flat to rent in England can be tough. The stress only compounds when things don’t go as planned. When I lived in London, I got caught out when my landlord insisted on “renegotiating” the tenancy terms after I had paid a holding deposit (a troublingly common practice in the market).
Here are twelve things tenants can do to protect their rights, which helped me succeed in my legal claim against my landlord.Read more