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.pngProvide opportunities for private renters to campaign on issues that affect them and their local areas
  • hwh-4.pngWork with affiliates towards achieving the aims of Generation Rent
  • commented 2018-07-17 08:59:09 +0100
    In response to Andy s comment I have worked for 16 years in a letting agents office and in my experience and having rented a cottage in a rural area I can safely say that some of the properties had hardly any maintenance done on them and the tenants were afraid to complain because of the fear of the rent going up. My friend lived in one of these cottages for 30 years and was a good and loyal tenant, never defaulting with her rent and looking after the cottage as best she could. During that time on one occasion her two ten and twelve year old daughters had to put their wellies on when using the kitchen taps so that they didn’t get an electric buzz off the taps as for quite a few years the property wasn’t earthed properly and there were no checks done on either the wiring or the wood burner. There were ancient storage heaters there which my friend bought herself when she moved in. She froze in the winter, as the property was so badly insulated that she couldn’t afford the heating bills, the old fashioned leaded light windows were actually bowing outwards and one of the upstairs windows was hanging on by one hinge. The answer when the new letting agent took over? As the property had fallen into such a neglected state (Landlord neglect) Serve a section 21 eviction notice on her, which devastated her as there was simply nowhere else she could move to that she could afford on a single pension. A lifelong asthmatic, during the winter months her lounge walls would be running wet. Thankfully with my help she got on the council waiting list and after a year of harassment and bullying from the owners solicitors, she obtained a social housing bungalow but even then was at the top of a list of 73 other people who had bid on it. Even after she had moved, the new Letting Agent (who I don t work for) tried to get a further five days rent from her as they said she moved five days early, but that was because the property was so cold she could no longer tolerate it and was in danger of becoming very ill, she is 69. That is just one story, the stress of living in a very poorly maintained property and living in fear of complaining is off the chart and then to receive a notice to quit on top it’s amazing no one has died in the older age group. In recent times Landlords are required to make sure that their properties are safer with new legislation, and that is a great improvement, but it still doesn’t help poorer tenants because as a result of having to let out safer properties it’s now a great excuse to hike the rents up which simply prices a great chunk of people out of the market.
  • commented 2018-07-17 08:25:27 +0100
    Please can you provide the data to back up this claim -

    Three in ten privately rented homes are considered “non-decent” and one in six are physically unsafe.
  • commented 2018-06-21 13:54:43 +0100
    The thing is that even three months notice is still very stressful and an extra month won t be time to save when you re paying up to £1000 per month and then have to pay anything up to another £1000 or more in Letting Agent fees to find somewhere else to live. The problem is much much more complicated than that. The whole system needs to be looked at, more secure tenancies are needed, with maybe an arbitrary body in place when it comes to regaining possession. It’s so difficult to just find somewhere else to live if you re on a limited income, that’s why it’s so stressful when a section 21 is served. For a single person, or a retired person on a fixed income or indeed anyone, there is simply nowhere to go! In addition prospective tenants have to undergo an affordability check to see if they can afford the rent. Either the minimum wage needs to be increased or rents need to come down or be capped so that instead of only people s wages being looked at, rents should also be more in line with what people can afford. And all of that is not even taking into account the shambles that is universal credit where you simply don t receive any money for at least 8 weeks. Because of this Landlords won t take people in receipt of benefits. If wages and the cost of living were more aligned with each other there would be a greatly reduced need to claim help.
  • commented 2018-06-21 13:35:56 +0100
    I think two things need to happen with Section 21 – the most obvious is that the notice should be at least 3 months – to the end of the calendar month, which gives renters a bigger chance to save up – and more time to find somewhere to live. Secondly, councils should be encouraging more private landlord schemes, whereby they cover repairs and maintenance, as well as find the tenants, encouraging both a hands’ off approach and a better service for tenants.
  • commented 2018-05-23 07:37:43 +0100
    Will McCallister
    A tenant can be removed quickly,how quick?
    It can take several months,then there’s the additional cost for repairs.it costs thousands.
    For every bad landlord there are 5 bad tenants.
    All I’m asking is for fairness and incentives for good landlords and tenants.
    A register or all
    If this means longer tenancies and rent controls,that’s fine by me,
    But:
    Section 24 is making thiings worse,rent rises and evictions will continue.
    The policy will really kick in by 2020/21,then the s,,,t will hit the fan.
    If ever there were an incentive for the landlord ,remove it.
    But I doubt they will,so all will run for the hills.
    Over to the councils to rehouse.
    Good luck
  • commented 2018-05-22 22:32:29 +0100
    Kevin Dray

    I don’t follow where you are getting from my comment that I am saying 1 is a greater number than 5.

    But you’re missing the point, it’s not about how fantastic some landlords are, or about how terrible some tenants are, or whether good landlords are something that is needed. I’m just trying to point out that in the landlord-tenant relationship, tenants currently seem to have most to lose and least protection. The fact that some landlords aren’t good landlords is good justification to increase those protections.

    From the landlord’s perspective, a bad tenant, who doesn’t pay rent and who damages the property can be evicted quite quickly. Insurance pays for the repairs, and I’ve seen many letting agents even advertise that they will cover the rent if the tenants disappear. The landlord may still have out of pocket costs for some things and see their premiums rise but at the end of the day all it is is a bit of a headache and a lost opportunity for some extra income.

    From the tenant’s perspective, a bad landlord can evict them with two month’s notice at any time for no reason at all. Two months may seem like a lot of notice but you try continuing without impacting on work/studies/looking after your family when you’ve suddenly got two months to find somewhere else to live and move. There’s no guarantee you can find somewhere within budget within reasonable commuting distance from work or from your kid’s school so you may have to find a new job or move your kid to a different school. Then there are the costs associated with moving, you have to fork out for letting agents fees yet again, pay another deposit, pay a removal company, have mail redirected etc.

    This is all if a landlord is a bit on the cruel side but still stays within the law, however tenants can be put under pressure by a bad landlord to do things the law doesn’t require of them, such as to move out even sooner than the two month notice period. I’ve known of landlords threatening to withhold the deposit (a spurious reason to withhold it can always be found) or to give a bad reference, making it difficult for the tenant to find somewhere else to live, and thus forcing the tenant to do as they wish.

    None of this necessarily applies to you, but as things stand it’s very much luck of draw as to what kind of landlord you get and it isn’t unreasonable to ask the government to do more to ensure tenants have adequate protection, but you seem to be taking that desire as an affront to your own honour, like the fact you are a good landlord should mean you don’t require governmental oversight.

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Is Onward's policy Right to Buy for private renters?

Right to Buy was electoral gold dust to the Conservatives back in the 1980s, but since council homes were sold off unreplaced, and the social housing sector dwindled, it has lost its lustre. With housing policy the key to winning over today’s 18 to, er, 45 year olds, it’s no wonder some in the party have taken up alchemy.

Onward, a think tank peopled by former government advisers, thinks it has the answer, which is about as close to Right to Buy for private tenants as we’re likely to get. Because the property is not the state’s to sell, it’s merely Chance to Buy.

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May removes yet another obstacle to council home building

This week has been the Conservative Party's conference, and their chance to match Labour's pledges to abolish Section 21 and seed-fund renters' unions. 

There is a lot of worry among the party faithful that they are not doing enough about housing - the defining political issue of a generation. But with consultation responses on security being scrutinised by officials back in Whitehall, and Help to Buy facing negative attention, their options were narrow.

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Mayor of London backs indefinite tenancies

At the Labour party conference this week, delegates adopted a motion to (among other things) "Help private renters with an end to ‘no fault’ evictions, controls on rents and new minimum standards, including three year tenancies as standard." 

The BBC reported on this commitment, but beyond the wording of this motion and John Healey's speech, we haven't had any more detail of what this would entail. 

Luckily, Sadiq Khan has obliged. While the Mayor of London is not a member of the Shadow Cabinet, last week's publication of his response to the government's consultation on longer tenancies revealed that he is calling for much the same thing, plus some more idea of what it might look like in practice.

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Labour signs up to #endsection21

We kind of knew this already, but Labour is officially backing our campaign to end Section 21 and will scrap landlords' ability to evict tenants without giving a reason. It was reported by the BBC this morning, was part of the shadow Housing Secretary John Healey's speech in the conference centre, and then a motion on housing that included it was passed.

This follows members of the End Unfair Evictions doing a lot of work behind the scenes to successfully get local Labour parties to support the motion.

An even bigger piece of news was a £20m pot to jumpstart tenants' unions in the UK, reported by the Independent

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Before you rent: How to protect your legal rights

Finding a flat to rent in England can be tough. The stress only compounds when things don’t go as planned. When I lived in London, I got caught out when my landlord insisted on “renegotiating” the tenancy terms after I had paid a holding deposit (a troublingly common practice in the market).

Here are twelve things tenants can do to protect their rights, which helped me succeed in my legal claim against my landlord.

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Cabinet split over tenancy reform

On Wednesday, the Sun reported that 10 Downing Street and the Treasury are blocking moves to legislate for longer tenancies.

Although the recently closed consultation left open the question of making the new tenancy mandatory or voluntary, the same newspaper had previously reported that the Housing Secretary, James Brokenshire, wanted all tenants to get it.

That sets up a big internal government battle over tenants' rights as the Conservative Party worries more and more about winning over younger voters. 

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Public backs better security for renters

As the consultation period on the government's proposals for longer tenancies draws to a close - the deadline to respond is this Sunday - we are handing in our End Unfair Evictions petition to the Ministry of Housing today. It passed 50,000 signatures on Tuesday, helped along by #VentYourRent.

And if that wasn't enough to make the government pay attention, new polling from Survation finds that our demands have the backing of the wider public, including Conservative voters.

Survation_2018.png

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No-fault evictions drive up homelessness

Section 21 is the leading cause of statutory homelessness. This law allows evictions with no reason needed, and this is one more reason why we should scrap it.

To some extent, this is stating the bleeding obvious. Since 2012, the end of a private tenancy has been the leading cause of homelessness cases accepted by local authorities, but until now no one has specifically pointed the finger at Section 21. Today, we've been able to demonstrate it.

Homelessness.png

Source: Ministry of Housing

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Proof that millions of renters are failed by unfair rental laws

The latest English Housing Survey was out last week, and the results are further evidence for what we’ve been arguing for years: England’s rental laws are making life insecure and expensive for growing numbers of people.  

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Four early victories for the End Unfair Evictions campaign

It is less than a month since we launched our joint campaign - with ACORN, the New Economics Foundation and the London Renters Union - to end section 21 no-fault evictions, and we've already had some major successes. 

Here are four things we can celebrate already.

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