GENERATION RENT campaigns for professionally managed, secure, decent and affordable private rented homes in sustainable communities.

Join us today and help campaign for a better deal for private renters.

How we help

  • hwh-1.pngCall for changes in legislation, strategies, policies and practices to make private housing a better place to live

  • hwh-2.pngStrengthen the voice of private tenants by developing a national network of private renters and local private renters’ groups
  • hwh-3.pngEncourage private renters to set up local groups in their own areas
  • hwh-4.pngWork with affiliates towards achieving the aims of Generation Rent
  • commented 2014-08-07 09:05:08 +0100
    Regarding Alan Duncan’s response to Paul Taylor’s comment about rent controls; on Islington Private Tenants meeting in September 2013, several Politicians and retired working professionals ( I.e they where active before 1988) attended , spoke and emphasised that there was no shortage of rentals at the time. Smaller population and easier lending may have contributed to that, but I believe that Duncan’s answer is a ’ cop out’ to rent controls. The entire chain involved in building, developing , letting etc of course has to be under controls; for example, a decent owners of a block may not actually be that greedy and need to charge a certain amount of rent in order to cover mortgage,insurance, repairs etc and rent controls may mean him/her/him-&-her needing to sell. On the other hand there are monsters such as the Landlord recently on the news, who has monopolised Caledonian Rd and ruined parts of its community. In his case, VERY right controls is the answer. I welcome discussions. Ms C
  • commented 2014-07-15 17:54:20 +0100
    Here is Alan Duncan’s reply to my email [Private Rented Sector debate, Weds 25th June]:

    Dear Mr Taylor
    Thank you for contacting me about the rent controls.

    While I am aware that the Opposition has been actively advocating rent controls, I know that the Government has no plans to re-introduce them. Rent controls would cut investment and mean less accommodation available for new tenants to rent, ultimately forcing up rents. I do not agree with proposals which would increase rents, especially at a time when people are struggling with the cost of living.

    Previously, rent controls decimated the private rented sector. Between the introduction of the 1939 Rent and Mortgage Interest Restrictions Act, and the abolition of rent controls at the end of the 1980s, the private rented sector from 55 per cent of households to just 8 per cent. Of course other factors can account for some of this fall, but rental controls were a significant factor. Rent controls meant that many landlords could not afford to improve or maintain their homes, leading to worse conditions for tenants.

    The interests of tenants are best served by avoiding excessive regulation which would ultimately force up rents and reduce supply and choice.

    Thank you again for taking the time to contact me.

    Yours sincerely

    Alan Duncan
  • @maddiezahatter tweeted link to this page. 2014-07-05 14:13:12 +0100
    Join Generation Rent to improve renting for all in the UK. http://www.generationrent.org/?recruiter_id=6018

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Blog

Getting on the housing ladder is murder

Melsonby sub-postmistress Diana Garbutt was found dead in her home in March 2010. Her husband Robin was arrested three weeks later and was subsequently found guilty of her murder.

Unoccupied since the crime, the only shop in the North Yorkshire village, along with its attached living quarters, has now been sold on at a knock down price

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No light at the end of the tunnel for the Housing Pinched

Today was marked by the signing of a new contract at work. As well as being my first contract for a long time without a specified end date, it brings with it the promise of a modest, but extremely welcome increase in salary. Welcome since over the last five years I have noted that the combination of taking care of a family, paying for an appropriately sized privately rented house, whilst commuting by train to work has meant that the money I’ve had available after all the bills have been paid, has been shrinking year on year.

It seems I’m not the only one and indeed my situation has been much more comfortable than that of others. The Resolution Foundation recently published research which shines the spotlight on that sector of the UK population who spend over half of their disposable income on ongoing housing costs: the so-called 'housing pinched'. Their findings are significant and depressing. Data relating to 2011-12 shows that 1.6 million households were 'housing pinched'. Of those just under 1 million households (that’s 2.2 million people) were in work. To put this into perspective, in 2012 the Resolution Foundation reports that the average household spent £60 on each of the following: food, non-alcoholic drinks, transport, recreation & leisure. The ‘housing pinched’ on average had £60 a week left for absolutely everything.

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Housing market slowing - unless you're a first time buyer

Is house price inflation starting to slow? Across the whole market, it would seem so, with the Office for National Statistics finding inflation fell from 10.4% in May to 10.2% in June. That is still well above anything that's remotely healthy - and house prices were already historically expensive, even after the 2008 crash. 

But first time buyers have it particularly bad. If you want to buy a house, prices are now 12 percent higher than they were a year ago (in May inflation was running at 11.3%). For people who already own a house and want to move, they are seeing a slowdown - from 10% to 9.5%. 

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How to build loads of truly and permanently affordable homes, without spending any money

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At Generation Rent, we've listened to lots of experts who have analysed the housing crisis and have come to a conclusion. The principle problem is that you can't just buy or rent a home, you have to pay for an investment too. Some people say the problem is supply - and that's true - but the supply problem exists because of the inability to supply homes that people need without charging them a high price because of a potential future investment return.

And so we've been looking at how you can decouple the investment value of a home for an investor from its utility value to the person living there. And we came up with this. Britain needs a second housing market. A bubble-free housing market for people who only want a home, sitting neatly alongside a free market for those people who want an investment.

And it turns out this could be implemented cheaply and easily and that it will save taxpayers money. We've made a short presentation here and written a paper, Buying out of the bubble. 

So we're calling for a secondary, bubble-free housing market - and we need your support to get politicians to adopt it and implement it. Join Generation Rent today (it's free) and help us campaign for real, effective solutions to the housing crisis.

Cheers,

 

Alex

Shop around: How renters can save on their energy bills

Last month Ofgem launched their ‘Be An Energy Shopper’ campaign to encourage tenants to switch energy suppliers when they can make savings and to overcome the hurdles that many may see perceive in the switching process.

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17 Reasons Your Rent Is Too High

If you've ever wondered why renting is so expensive, we've compiled a handy list and published it on Buzzfeed.

Click here to see all 17 reasons.

New job opportunity at Generation Rent

Generation Rent has grown this year and is now recruiting for a Policy and Communications Officer to support our parliamentary and public work on a fixed-term, one-year contract.

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Council gets tough on letting agents

Newham Council has claimed to be the first local authority in the country to tackle letting agents who are flouting the law.

An initiative by the council to tackle poor practice by lettings agents and protect tenants has helped to improve standards in the profession with the majority of agents now complying with the law.

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Government offers guidance on how to rent

In June, the Department for Communities and Local Government launched a new guide for private rented sector tenants titled How to rent: the checklist for renting in England. With this guide the government want to give the country’s 9 million tenants access to understandable information for renting property in England.

 

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Major letting agent backs all-custodial deposit protection

Eric Walker is Managing Director of Northwood UK and tweets at @justericwalker

We in the property industry have more common ground with the likes of Generation Rent and Shelter than many would think. Professional agents do an immense job and provide a valuable service to help protect consumers from the small minority of rogue agents. MPs call for regulation every day, yet the only group which can change the law is in fact the politicians who refuse to do so. 

This Government wants agents to regulate themselves. Their reason is in no small part due to the horrors which would be uncovered if agents were forced to regulate. Clients' money should be held in a ‘ring-fenced’ client account, but while this may protect money from creditors, it is not ring-fenced from the agent. If their business is struggling, there is little point in seeking bank assistance and as such, clients' money is a very tempting resource.

 

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