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 2015-02-04 10:06:09 +0000
    I agree with Ms Morgan and would like to add that I believe that agents make their commission on ’ renewal of contract’, for some that means the tenant sign for another terms, for others, ending the tenancy and most likely evading explainhow the reason for it to both parties. The standard short hold tenancy therefore enable tenants & landlords to eat out of the agents hands.
  • commented 2015-02-04 08:04:57 +0000
    Good interview bu Alex Hilton on breakfast TV just now, talking about Letting Agents charges to tenants. As a landlord I am charged hundreds of pounds per tenant find, and I am not happy that the agents are fleecing my new tenants for a service that I have already paid for in full! However I do think Letting Agents should be able to take a modest refundable deposit from prospective tenants upon receipt of their application forms, to deter time-wasters.
  • commented 2015-02-04 08:01:05 +0000
    Can we lobby for rent control and anti-discrimination towards tenants on benefits, age, parents etc?
  • commented 2015-01-24 19:38:12 +0000
    The day Housing Benefit was introduced was the day subsidised rents should have been abolished. They must be abolished now. It is unjust, also bad for flexible labour movement, to have “social” tenants who may be well off, being subsidised by those paying full market rents. Adding insult to injury, those with the “Golden lottery ticket” of a council house will have security for life, (which may not be in even their own interests, if they need to move for jobs or to care for relatives) Currently, the perverse result of well intended long out-dated housing policies mean the struggling “Have-nots” are subject for life to the insecurity of two month notice "No-Fault " evictions.

    Making social housing rents equal to the market rate would free up stock, as occupants shifted themselves around to live in the places, and at the prices, most suited to their changing needs. Those who were too poor to pay could do the same as everyone else, and apply for Housing Benefit. The inequality of security could be overcome by a National Tenancy Agreement (N.T.A.)

    That would be a tweak on the Deed of Assurance (devised by Property 118., and using, in the main, the existing legislation. ) Every existing and future tenant could live under the same equal terms. All tenants are then bound by the existing A.S.T. (Assured Shorthold Tenancy) rules, including usually giving one month’s notice, and getting usually two, as a Section 20 No-Fault repossession, or else being evicted for breach of terms (e.g. non payment of rent or antisocial conduct) . But the national introduction of a standardised version of the Deed of Assurance, for all tenancies, could simultaneously provide them the benefit of a default assumed lifelong tenancy, if they wish, unless the landlord chooses to evict them for breach or else because for his own reasons he needs to recover the property (e.g. for sale).

    The difference would be, a National Tenancy Agreement scheme would give social justice and security for all. It would put all tenants on fair and equal footing, and would give an incentive for landlords to retain a trouble-free good tenant, because it would impose a modest proportionate penalty for No-Fault eviction. Tenants have an incentive to behave well and to take extreme care of their home, if it is theirs for as long as they want it. (They also have an incentive to attend to minor matters at their own time and expense, and also to draw the owner’s attention to such things as overflowing gutters or missing roof tiles, which could be missed on a routine periodic check)

    An extra supply of housing should soon become available as those in social housing realise they may as well live wherever it suits them, now, instead of remaining trapped where a local council once put them, possibly decades previously. They will have no more and no less security of tenure, and will pay the same market rents as everyone else, so they may as well select the type and location of their tenancy, just like anyone else. N.B. The cry that “The Council can’t give me a place” will no longer be relevant, when social housing and private housing is all on equal tenancy terms.

    Perhaps the penalty could reasonably be set as one month’s rent for every completed full year of tenancy, if the landlord evicts a No-Fault tenant. The existing government schemes to protect tenant deposits could also store a “Sinking Fund” of these amounts, so there is no doubt the tenant will get both his deposit and his compensation. This would not be entirely onerous on landlords, because it would greatly increase the likelihood of tenants treating the property with care, and it would greatly reduce the likelihood of landlords having “void” periods between tenancies. The Sinking Funds could be paid to local or central government, when tenants freely choose to leave for their own reasons.

    ( This would a) feed a source of extra tax revenue, and b) discourage landlords from “constructive eviction” tactics, i.e. trying to “encourage” a No-Fault tenant to leave “voluntarily”)

    There would be no financial shock to any landlord, or his mortgage funder, because the financial liability is already paid, and safely stored along with the tenant’s deposit. (It could be included as routine that all tenants pay every twelfth month’s rent directly into their Deposit Protection Scheme, on the understanding that part of the money, unlike the Deposit itself, will never be theirs to reclaim, unless the landlord evicts them through no fault of their own)

    The advantages appear to include: 1/ Freeing up housing stock 2/ Introducing incentives to care well for property 3/Introducing social justice and fairness between all tenancies equally 4/ Providing the entire population with either security of tenure or reasonable compensation if deprived of that 5/ Putting all tenants on equal footing regarding paying market rent or else claiming Housing Benefit during periods of low income (instead of, as at present, subsidising a selection of buildings, regardless of the wealth of any particular occupant) 6/ Instantly producing increased revenue to local authorities and housing associations, as they charge market rents 7/ Quickly beginning to reduce calls on public funds a) from people who could be cared for by relatives, if they are free to move b) from people who could take up employment if they were free to move. 8/ Beginning a trickle of income to local or central government, as the Sinking Funds begin to release money which has been held in Deposit Protection, each time a tenant who has completed a twelve month tenancy (or pro rata multiples of years) chooses to move of his own free will, thus releasing funds which had been set aside to compensate him if his move had been forced by the landlord when he had not breached his tenancy terms.

    The latter point raises the need to include exceptional provisions, regarding already existing tenancies. Any compensation due when either social or private landlords wish to repossess from a No-Fault tenant, under the new National Tenancy Agreement, would begin to be calculated from the date of the relevant legislation (or amended legislation, as the case may be).
  • commented 2015-01-04 19:22:44 +0000
    conditions of tenancies are often in great need of repair. renting can be tenuous if complaints made for improvements
  • commented 2014-12-17 12:48:29 +0000
    Misrepresentation of lettings. Agents that find tenants for landlords they are not contracted to manage the rental for, not disclosing this beforehand, then shirking responsibility when the landlord when repair issues crop up or issues with the rental. You sign with a ‘reputable’ letting agency only to find they are a front for a less than desirable landlord!

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Blog

#ventyourrent: a round-up

On 26th April, we launched a social media campaign called #ventyourrent on Twitter and Tumblr. We asked people to tell us on cardboard, a photo, or just a tweet, what they were paying in rent and what it bought them.

The plan was to get Londoners sharing their worst experiences of renting and generating some solidarity ahead of the Mayoral Election on 5th May. We hoped that seeing the posts would get people thinking about the housing market as a political issue that they could have some influence on. If they did, we had a handy guide for them.

It was the first campaign of its kind that we have attempted and we could not have done it without the energy of a crack team of volunteers*, the guidance of Paolo Gerbaudo of Kings College London, and the inspiration of Pierre-Emmanuel Lemaire, Yasmina Aoun, Cong Bi and Nicola Lotter of Central St Martin's MA Communication Design course.

It was a huge success, generating our biggest media story to date, attracting hundreds of submissions, and surely contributing at least a tiny bit to the highest ever turnout for a London Mayoral Election. 

Now that the dust has settled, we decided to find out what #ventyourrent taught us.

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The new Mayor's in-tray

London has a new Mayor. Sadiq Khan was elected last Thursday with 1.3m votes, the largest personal mandate for any British politician in history. That gives him a lot of clout in implementing his manifesto, whether that's dealing with local councils or the Westminster government. 

Let's remind ourselves what he promised. On our Vote Homes comparison site, Sadiq came in behind the Green Party candidate Sian Berry with more amber policies (ones we felt were okay) than greens (policies we called for). And while he had fewer greens than the Lib Dem, Caroline Pidgeon, he had no policies we thought were terrible (marked red) to Caroline's two (on security and rent levels).

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Finally, Zac and Sadiq go head-to-head on housing

After months of debate and campaigning, the London Mayoral election is imminent. Despite housing being the absolute number one issue of the election, the two frontrunners have not managed to face each other to debate it.

There have been general hustings between Sadiq Khan and Zac Goldsmith, including the Evening Standard and Centre for London debate on 21 April, where, amid heated exchanges on policing, transport and extremism, the only real look-in that housing had simply highlighted the similarities between the candidates: building ambitions, first dibs for Londoners, and refusal to build on the green belt (despite Zac’s desire to paint Sadiq as a park concreter).

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UKIP's answer to London's housing crisis

The final manifesto we're looking at for Vote Homes is UKIP's Peter Whittle's. Like all the other candidates, Peter recognises that housing is the biggest challenge facing London. But unlike the other candidates, he sees the cause as excess demand, rather than a shortage of supply.

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What will George Galloway do for London's renters?

The Respect Party candidate, George Galloway, has set out his manifesto on his home page, and we've updated our candidate comparison on Vote Homes. This is what he is promising London’s renters.

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Caroline Pidgeon sets out housing policies

Caroline Pidgeon, Liberal Democrat candidate for London Mayor, has published her manifesto. We’ve taken a look at what she’d do to fix the housing crisis and how she compares with other candidates so far.

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Letting fees - 10 areas now covered

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This morning we have published six more areas on www.lettingfees.co.uk – Manchester, York, and four more London boroughs – Bromley, Camden, Lambeth and Wandsworth.

Flathunters in those areas can check to see which letting agents are charging the least, and which charge the most. These areas join four already in London, and bring the total number of letting agents covered by our website past 700.

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Sian Berry's pitch to London's renters

The Green Party candidate Sian Berry has already promised to establish a Tenants' Union for London. But what else does she have up her sleeve? She recently published her full manifesto and we've now updated her scorecard on www.votehomes2016.com.

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Zac sets out his stall for renters

The Conservative candidate for London Mayor, Zac Goldsmith, has published his housing manifesto, and we've updated the Vote Homes policy grid with his offer for London's renters.

As the candidate of the governing party in Westminster, it was always going to be interesting to see if he would go any further than current government policy. One of the biggest divides between the Conservatives and the other parties is on security of tenure, and it's safe to say that Zac has stuck his neck out on this, though we're yet to be convinced that renters will benefit from his proposal.

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Renters' Hustings - London Election 2016

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More than a hundred people came to the Renters’ Hustings on Tuesday to hear candidates from five parties tell us what they’ll do for private renters if they’re elected as London Mayor or Assembly Member – a lively discussion chaired brilliantly by Buzzfeed’s Jim Waterson. All five candidates (Sian Berry: Green, Tom Copley: Labour, Joy Morrissey: Conservative, Zack Polanski: Lib Dem and David Kurten: UKIP) said they are private renters themselves, so perhaps they know how, er, ‘special’ it is trying to survive as a private renter in this city.

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