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 2015-05-11 17:15:01 +0100
    What now the Conservatives are back,when will Section 21 a primative law be abolished?
  • commented 2015-05-07 19:10:23 +0100
    I was sorry to read the stories of Paul and Anne. But the answer is simple. Ban private landlords by taxing them so it becomes financially impossible for them to exist, sell all their housing to the existing occupiers, or to local authorities or establishments such as universities where appropriate, and put legislation in place to ensure that they rent in a fair and proper manner. Private landlords are the root of 99% of these issues, whether it’s because they are poor landlords with no sense of responsibility, or whether they are just plain greedy.
  • commented 2015-05-07 12:42:26 +0100
    My daughter and her partner have just learned, without any warning, that their landlord intends to sell the house. This will be the third time in six years they have been forced to move.

    Here is a reply from Alan Duncan MP to my Generation Rent’s “Please stand up for renters by supporting rent control” email:
    ……….

    “Rent controls never work – they destroy investment in housing leading to fewer homes to rent and poorer quality accommodation. Last time they were used in the UK they led to a collapse in the size of the private rented sector.

    The only way to have affordable rents is to build more homes. That is why we are investing £400 million in building 10,000 new homes that will be let out below market rent to help people save up for a deposit and buy their own home. We are also able to offer guarantees to housing providers and investors, enabling them to borrow at cheaper rates and build tens of thousands of new homes, including 30,000 new affordable homes through the Affordable Housing Guarantee scheme. Thanks to our long-term economic plan house building is now at its highest level since 2007.

    We want to see a private rented sector that is more transparent, gives greater certainty to hardworking families, especially those with children of school age, and which delivers higher standards and more affordable rents.

    · Rent controls in the UK reduced private rented housing stock. Rent controls resulted in the size of the private rented sector shrinking from 55 per cent of households in 1939 to just 8 per cent in the late 1980s. Rent controls also meant that many landlords could not afford to improve or maintain their homes.

    · The Institute of Economic Affairs has said rent controls will lead to higher rents. They have said that ‘sincerents can alter between tenancies, tenancy rent controls cannot improve affordability for any group other than in the very short term. It is most likely to simply change the timing of rent costs over a tenancy by raising initial rents. Indeed the existence of these [rent] controls may even increase market rents overall’.

    · The OECD says that rent controls push down housing supply. The OECD have made clear that rent controlsreduce the supply of rented housing, saying that ‘easing the relatively strict rent controls and tenant-landlord regulations that are found in some Nordic and continental European countries could significantly increase residential mobility by improving the supply of rental housing and preventing the locking-in of tenants’.

    · Since 2010 average rents in England have fallen in real terms. According to the latest ONS figures, in the period May 2010 to December 2014 average rents in England fell by 1.3 per cent in real terms (Hansard, 2 February 2015, Col. 222996, link).

    · Building more homes to rent. Through the Build to Rent Fund we are providing finance, along with private sector investment, to build new purpose-built privately rented homes. 14 contracts have already been signed which are worth £230 million and will deliver over 3,000 homes to rent. When all agreements are finalised during 2015 £1 billion of investment will be provided which will deliver 10,000 new homes to rent. We have also used the government’s hard-won fiscal credibility to offer guarantees to housing providers and investors, enabling them to borrow at cheaper rates and build tens of thousands of new homes, including 30,000 new affordable homes through the Affordable Housing Guarantee scheme.

    · Labour’s plans for more regulation and rent controls would make life harder for tenants. Labour’s plans forrent controls, banning letting agents’ fees for tenants, and blanket local and national landlord licensing schemes would lead to higher rents as landlords pass on extra costs to tenants. It would also undermine investment in housing making it harder for people to find a good quality, safe and affordable home to rent. Ultimately a reduced supply of rental homes will mean higher rents and less choice for tenants."

    Regards

    Alan Duncan
  • commented 2015-05-07 08:46:57 +0100
    My grandchildren live in Southgate, London. They are again set to move at the end of this month; fourth time in 6 years. I am kind of happy they are moving from The house they are currently because there was a fire start from the electrical terminal and luckily my grandson, 8 years, noticed the smoke coming from the under stair cupboard! That was a year ago and I have been worried ever since because the electrics are dodgy. The current landlord has warned that come the 1st June the builders will be in and the roof off – intimidation or what. Shame on him and he has children himself. My daughter tells me the rents have increased by about 20% in the last 18 months. So, finding somewhere in the local vicinity will prove to be difficult. She has to date not found another place.
    The other thing is, their father also lives in rented housing and he has also had to move within the last year. So, really, the children have moved at least 7 times within the last 6 years.
    I try to remain positive and class each new move as an adventure and pose it as thus to the children. Inside, I feel distraught for my grandchildren and their parents. Both their parents are hard working and loving and I feel sure this love helps to sustain them.
  • commented 2015-04-16 02:50:53 +0100
    Sue Cole’s housing problem is not at all unusual. Contrary to popular demonisation, not everyone over 50 is either a rich home owner or a smugly secure council tenant. In middle age and older, people frequently need to find somewhere to live, often in a different area. Her sense of betrayal is well justified and understandable after playing by the rules, paying in to the public kitty during a lifetime of asking for nothing.

    Sue is typical because she returns to her home town and is treated worse than a new immigrant, who does not need to pass the five year test she faces. She must prove she has lived without straying outside the boundary lines of that single council, even to put her name on the waiting list. (Normally, in any case, waiting lists are long enough that she would need to be, perhaps, 150 years old before her name reaches the top, if ever)

    She is also treated worse than a feckless breeder, who is also exempt , and is treated worse than any woman who can play the system and leap the housing list by fiddling the domestic violence short cut. She will never get even the notoriously dire but at least assured safety net of hostel places, because they are provided for women with children. It is harsh to find all resources and help are for those who have not paid in, with nothing for those who have, for half a century or more, only to be denied, derided and labelled “burden”.

    Sue and thousands like her find their existence denied or ignored by the constant use of the word “young” in every housing context. Is it not a truth universally assumed, that anyone over 40 ought to go sleep in a field? (Or else just die, and hurry up about it, to get out of the way of the Entitled Young!)

    Sue finds she cannot pay rent without continuing to work till she drops, but paradoxically she is luckier than most who have reached retirement age. If she had taken retirement, no agent would allow her to apply for any tenancy. The first and main demand from potential landlords for virtually all properties is that the applicant Must Be Currently Employed. (“No DSS”, as they express it) Like the 90 year old’s living in the Bournemouth bus shelter, and the other old couple who jumped to their deaths, retired people everywhere are turned away by private landlords and by local councils. The help to buy is exclusively for young employed, so is the “free” deposit scheme, and nobody over 50 is eligible for a mortgage. So, they cannot rent, cannot access social housing, and cannot buy. Hence the bus shelter and hence the suicide.

    This site is typical in hosting hostility in ageist comments on the boards. (“Selfish” older people are selfishly occupying larger homes than they need, or else are “selfishly” not doing so, but instead are selfishly downsizing which selfishly deprives some Entitled Young people of the starter homes which are theirs By Right. Some are “selfishly” funding their retirement years with money which rightfully belongs to their Entitled Offspring. Some are selfishly refusing to lock themselves away out of sight in some kind of cut price prison cell segregated over-50’s ghetto accommodation, which is good enough for the likes of them, as they dawdle over their task of getting dead. This is the tenor and gist of the age-hate and contempt on this site, which is not challenged, or banned as it would be if racist or homophobic.

    Such age-hate prejudice causes middle aged and older people to have greater housing difficulty than younger people. Over 50’s or even over 40’s are openly barred in flat share adverts , and they cannot ask or expect the same willingness from others, to permit sofa surfing, which younger people take for granted.

    Even the housing organisations obsessively repeat the word “young”, in every discussion of housing. This allows politicians and lazy journalists to do the same, so in turn the general public make the assumptions that housing need is exclusively for The Young, and that “The Elderly” have more housing than they deserve, which means they are to blame for everything.
  • commented 2015-04-15 20:40:09 +0100
    I am 60 moved back to se after my divorce and was told I need to be living in borough for 5 years before I can even put my name down for housing. I have since age of 18 paid my taxes and was born here. I feel betrayed that I have reached 60 and can’t even think about retiring, to survive I will need to work as long as I can. I have never taken any benefits , even felt guilty applying for my Boris travel card . What has one to do to be given help……

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Blog

Housing White Paper: Our immediate reaction

Commenting on the Housing White Paper, Dan Wilson Craw, Director of Generation Rent, said:

“Sajid Javid has the right analysis about the plight of renters, but his White Paper has failed to offer us anything of substance.

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Removing criminals from the housing market

Although the 2016 Housing and Planning Act paved the way for the mass sell-off of council houses, eroded security for social tenants and watered down the affordability of new homes, it also made it possible to ban criminals from letting out properties, with new Banning Orders. 

As we await the Housing White Paper to see how far the government will go to improve private renting further - and how much it will atone for the damage it caused to social housing - we are drafting our feedback on how Banning Orders will work. 

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Are landlord incentives the answer to tenant insecurity?

Today's Observer declares that the "home-owning democracy", that elusive vision beloved of the Conservatives since Thatcher, is finished. 

Obs_0502.jpg 

Ahead of next week's Housing White Paper, Communities Secretary Sajid Javid says, "We understand people are living longer in private rented accommodation", which is the closest the government has come to admitting that their policies to help first-time buyers can only go so far. 

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Housing White Paper: could Starter Homes be genuinely affordable?

As the publication date for the government's Housing White Paper approaches, we and groups across the the housing world are hoping for an announcement that will signal a 'whole new mindset', as the Secretary of State has promised.

One item that will be included is confirmation of how the government's long-running Starter Homes policy will work - and the detail will tell us how far it will go towards slowing the affordability crisis for first-time buyers. This is the government's flagship policy that was pitched as "turning Generation Rent into Generation Buy".

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Are banks behind your latest rent rise?

This morning, Mortgage Strategy magazine and the Daily Telegraph reported that Santander is requiring its buy-to-let borrowers to raise the rent on their tenants as high as possible.

The bank even demands that landlords get a valuation of the market rent every time the tenancy is up for renewal and then "take all steps to ensure that the review [with the tenant] takes place and leads to the maximum increase in the rent which can reasonably be achieved."

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Fuel poverty update: we can’t have any more delays in supporting renters in the coldest homes

Just before Christmas, as the weather got colder and government released its latest update on the fuel poverty statistics, there was still no news for private renters who need clarity about the detail of minimum energy efficiency standards in the PRS.

The statistics showed that one in five private rented households are officially fuel poor, and that the average ‘fuel poverty gap’ – the amount of money needed for a household to escape fuel poverty – is highest for private renters.

Despite these worrying trends, there is, in theory at least, some light at the end of the tunnel – but delays in implementing the policy need to be quickly remedied for that to be realised.

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Help lead Generation Rent - apply to join the board

Generation Rent would be nothing without the people who donate their money or time to the cause. We have a team of two full-time staff going into 2017, and we are ever more reliant on the generosity of our supporters.

The organisation is governed by a board of unpaid trustees, who support the team and enable us to devote as much of our energy to campaigning for renters' rights and building the wider movement.

With the need to develop the diversity of our funding, and new opportunities to make the most of, we are recruiting several new trustees who will help us do this.

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Changes at Generation Rent

Since its launch, Generation Rent has achieved a series of improvements to the lives of renters, including:

  • Outlawing of revenge evictions
  • Making landlords pay their fair share of tax
  • Stronger regulation of landlords and letting agents
  • A proposed ban on letting fees 

The growing renter population finally has a voice, but it needs to be much stronger.

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Build-to-Rent: A new vision for London housing, but who is it for?

For many years, debates around housing supply have suggested that a model needs to be worked up that leverages investment into building new long-term, professionally managed privately rented accommodation, as is much more normal in other countries around the world.

Generation Rent has always argued that new supply will only help a small percentage of lucky renters, and that the priority should be to support legislative reform that would improve things for the over two million London renters in existing stock. 

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Property guardians speak out about Wild West sector

Some of you will have read stories in the past year or two about property guardians. Originally a low cost way of beating extortionate private rental prices, the scheme has been coming under fire for rent hikes, poor living conditions and a lack of regulation.

I run a Facebook-based campaign and support group called Property Guardians UK. Over the past 2 years I have collected stories and information from those who came to my site and provided some with legal advice on problems they had with their agencies. I am also a guardian myself, currently in my 8th year in the scheme.

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