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 10:15:15 +0000
    Ms stanton,I raised the comment regarding discrimination of LEA tenants on this forum last summer. Thank you for reminding the new readers. Yes many are pensioners & others are mature students, working professional on 0-h or hour-contracts or simply people in employment who’s wages doesn’t cover the rent. rent poverty has prevented me from leaving a job that’s making me ill & to do a Masters Degree. As a teacher it would really benefit my career to obtain a Masters & as a subject specialist I would be more suited as a L4 Lecturer. My point with the last comment is that rent slavery & poverty ruins careers& health not just of the renter but also those involved in the renters life.
  • 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

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Blog

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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Huge victory for renters as Chancellor bans fees

There was some extra cash for "affordable" housing in Philip Hammond's Autumn Statement, but there was only really one big story from today:

The Government is going to ban letting fees!

This is a phenomenal achievement and the result of a tireless campaign over recent years by us, Shelter, Citizens Advice, the Debrief and local renter groups around the country.

Dozens of us investigated our local letting agents to build up the case for reform on www.lettingfees.co.uk. Thousands of us signed petitions and wrote to our MPs and the government listened. 

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