Private rents

Challenging unreasonable private rents

If your rent is a lot more than other rents for the same type of home in your area, it is not a ‘market rent’. You can ask a Property Tribunal to fix a lower rent.

But remember

  • the Property Tribunal might fix a higher rent than the one you pay now or
  • your landlord might evict you if you challenge the rent.

The law about some types of tenancy like assured shorthold tenancies makes it easy for your landlord to evict you. They can use the law to evict you rather than give up the extra rent.

Get advice before challenging unreasonable rents. Choose Find a local adviser below.

The Government – disputing private rents

The Government – guidance about rent cases at the tribunal

Shelter – property tribunals

Challenge rent increases

Do not just pay the increased rent if your landlord asks for it. If you just pay it, the landlord can say you have agreed with them about the new rent amount.

How you challenge rent increases depends on the type of tenancy you have. Choose Tenancy Checker below to work out if your tenancy is a fixed term tenancy or a periodic tenancy.

Shelter – Tenancy Checker

Fixed term tenancies

A fixed term tenancy is one that lasts for a fixed period of time like 6 months or a year and then ends.

  1. You do not have to accept it if your private landlord offers you a new fixed term at a higher rent. But think about it before saying “no” to the new rent. Saying “yes” to it will give you the legal right to live there for the fixed term.
  2. If you say “no” the landlord can start action to evict you. Choose Being evicted below for help with this.
  3. Get advice before you challenge a rent increase. Choose Find a local adviser below

Periodic tenancies

Periodic tenancies are tenancies that continue after the first term has ended and you do not get a new fixed term. If you do not get a new fixed term after the first one ends, your tenancy just ‘rolls on’. If you pay your rent monthly, the tenancy will run month to month. If you rent pay weekly the tenancy will run from week to week.

  1. Your landlord can only increase the rent if:
    • you and the landlord agree about the amount of rent or
    • the landlord gives you a formal notice – a Landlord’s Notice Proposing a New Rent
    • if the original tenancy agreement had a clause about regular rent increases
  2. You have a right to challenge the proposed rent increase by asking a Property Tribunal to decide the new rent
  3. But before you take action think about if your landlord might evict you. The law about some types of tenancy like assured shorthold tenancies makes it easy for your landlord to evict you. They can use the law to evict you rather than give up the extra rent.
  4. Get advice before challenging rent increases. Choose Find a local adviser below.

Being evicted

Find a local adviser

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