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Graham Awards


Searing criticism of agents and landlords by leading consumer group

A prominent consumer group claims that one in 10 tenants currently renting say they have at some point been evicted “for no cause” - and one in six say they have had their rent “unfairly increased”.

The claims come from the HomeOwners’ Alliance, which has published a new report on what they call “disgraceful” conditions and practices in the private rental sector.

The report says:


- 10 per cent of those renting a home have been evicted with no cause, one in six are on short-term leases with no security of tenure, and a similar number claim their rent has been unfairly increased in the past;

- Some 39 per cent have trouble getting their landlord to carry out essential repairs, while a similar number claim to live in cold and damp properties, and roughly the same proportion say they have anti-social neighbours;

- A third of respondents said they had been obliged to pay “high upfront charges” to lettings agents for references and inventories, prior to last Saturday’s introduction of the ban on fees levied on tenants in England;

- Some 60 per cent feel they will never be able to afford to own a home; additionally, some two thirds support the idea of the government’s Help to Buy scheme to raise a deposit although some are aware that it may cause property prices to rise.

“We have a crisis on our hands. A majority living in rented accommodation desperately want to buy a home of their own - yet most think this is a pipe dream. This shouldn’t be the case in the fifth strongest economy in the world” says Paula Higgins, chief executive of the HomeOwners Alliance.

“Not only that, but it is disgraceful that such high numbers of people living in rented accommodation are putting up with damp, cold properties and reluctant landlords who do not maintain their homes to the required standards” she continues.

“Help to Buy continues to be a popular scheme despite fundamental leasehold problems, while features offered by Build to Rent developments are also attractive to consumers, including security of tenure. Shared ownership has also lost some of its shine.”

The survey by the HOA was sponsored by an insurance firm and an architectural consultancy; it was conducted in mid-March and involved a sample of 2,195 UK adults of which 728 were renters.

Poll: Is the private rental sector really as bad as HOA makes out?


  • Paul Smithson

    Do they ever do a survey for Landlords asking about rent arrears? and are anti social tenants the Landlords fault?


    I was thinking the same thing. How many Landlords can't get tenants to maintain the property in line with their obligation. How many landlords have paid thousands of pounds for eviction because tenants stop paying rent. It's a never ending story about how badly treated tenants are when in fact they probably get a better deal than landlords!


    I spent monet and time helping my old landlord out by fixing his property up. When I asked him to fix the gas for winter I got handed an eviction notice. I did no damage, was on great terms with the neighbours (still talk to them now) and all bills were fully up to date, the l only thing I did wrong was asking the landlord to do his job and fix the gas (none of the property had been checked). In the end I called environmental health who condemned the property due to safety hazard. The house is still the same (clearly tell looking outside that the requirements to rent the property out have not been done) it is still a danger and the landlord has done no work and yet it is being occupied again by tenants. Just keep blaming the tenants for uncaring, disgusting landlords though, I'm sure tial help them get their rent (FYI, if I lived in the same conditions again, I would have to use the rent just to stay alive due to the landlords negligence)

  • James B

    Maybe ask The landlords of that 10% of tenants evicted why they were moved on, I’m pretty sure there will be a reason alongside each one ! Of course the tenant will say it is for no reason
    These groups clearly like to use the word evicted for effect, these tenants have not been evicted the tenancy has been brought to an end

    S l
    • S l
    • 05 June 2019 10:13 AM

    or evicted for obvious reasons? breach of contract, rent arrears of more than 2 months, utilities bills arrears, damage to property, anti social behaviour and so on and so on..... Good tenants dont get evicted. full stop


    I know right, simply asking a landlord to fix a problem (the heating for winter) is obviously a legit reason to be handed an eviction notice, right? And yes, it was an eviction notice, not the tenancy ending. Good tenants get evicted just z much, if not more so, due to them not being so pushy or forceful in making the landlord do their jobs (or when they do ask, they get eviction notices, regardless of them being up to date with rent etc) but just keep blaming the tenants, that will fix everything right. You guys sound just like the type of landlord that will do the same, evict for asking, making you the scum that pushed this new law forward. Muppets

  • jeremy clarke

    Another biased organisation asking a biased list of questions and promoting the soundbite results! If 1 in 10 are unhappy, that means 9 in 10 are happy!
    At the end of the day the fault lies with successive governments failing to provide social housing to house those that cannot behave as tenants in the private sector.

  • icon

    How many tenants chose a periodic tenancy? Clearly biased nonsense

  • Angus Shield

    I notice on Companies House that HOA were nearly 'evicted' from the register in April 2014......

  • icon

    Hey people, i have tenants paying my rent on the due date every month for over 35 years, never ever missing a payment or paying late, always allow me to carry out my Inspections every 2 or 3 months.
    Today im going to evict them, for what reason you cry, because i feel like it I say and then im going to advertise for new tenants. Yes you say but you will have a rent void, o dear i forgot about that, silly me!!!!
    Really, do we evict because we can? There are some many dumb people out there hiding behind charities, Shelter etc and journalists with nothing better to write about.

  • icon

    One thing one learns about surveys is that most of the results are skewed to further the interests of one group or another. Much news - whether it be on the BBC or RT lr in the dsily press Left or Right - is fake news. Maybe most is fake ?

    Landlord bashing is currently fashionable. There are both Rachman types and great landlords. Great tenants and tenants from hell. No politician grasps the nettle on evil. Evil landlords or Evil tenants. They prefer to punish and vilify all.

    But if we think it is getting worse it is paradise compared with what Corbyn would do to landlords.

    Or some Councils. We have a holiday home in Cornwall which we use for periods as summer holiday lets. And on which I pay full Council Tax naturally. Cornwall Council has now banned council refuse collections for such properties . So I and others have had to arrange a private collection service. What next ? Will the police refuse to protect us or will the NHS decline to serve us in Cornwall ? Discrimination of a distinct group by those who's salaries and services we pay for ( I.e. the profligate Cornwall Council) ? That is ok then.

    • 05 June 2019 09:37 AM

    Taken to its logical conclusion unless you have a Firemark placed on the property perhaps the local fire service will refuse to extinguish any fire in holiday homes!!

    S l
    • S l
    • 05 June 2019 10:27 AM

    perhaps we should have an outcry over high salaries to these groups / organisations. even bin man now refused to collect any mix recycle items due to health and safety issues? what a load of baloney. Seems to me like everyone wanted to get a high paid salary without doing anything. Typical

  • icon

    Bit like charging full Council Tax for your empty property while you refurb it due to thrashing by previous tenant and then you let the same property to a single person and the stupid clueless council give a 25% discount. Ask them to explain and they cant as they know its stealing.

  • icon

    I have never evicted a tenant for no reason. What would be the point in that. My rents haven't been put up for the last 6 year's.
    Think private landlords need some support rather than this constant criticism.

    S l
    • S l
    • 05 June 2019 10:34 AM

    I would say any landlords increasing rent is only doing it in accordance to current market rates. Tenant cannot possibly expect to rent below market rate and not increase rent at any time. Moreover, landlord hardly ever increase rent until the council impose the licensing scheme which costs thousands and all the new laws and regulations obviously increased costs of maintenance and running the prs, hence the increase in rent. How absurd does articles like these going to keep coming?

     G romit

    Rents are being forced up by Government policies e.g. Sec.24.
    Most if not all of any increase is going to the Government in higher taxes.


    Got evicted for asking my landlord to fix the heating and have it checked by a fire Marshall. The point was so he didn't have to pay out to fix the things he was supposed to (which he didn't). environmental health in the end have condemned the property yet he is still renting it out. If you don't find that wrong or you blame the tenant well...

  • icon
    • 05 June 2019 09:47 AM

    There should be no need to evict anyone.
    If a S21 is issued the tenants should vacate no later than the last day of the 2 month's NTQ.
    It is only because the law requires a tortuous eviction process for LL to recover their property that an eviction is required at all.
    A LL should be able to remove tenants with police assistance if necessary the day after vacating date if the tenants are still occupying the property.
    That would substantially reduce rent arrears.
    Tenants would behave themselves.
    If they rent default they will invariably vacate not wishing to be removed by police.
    No need for any Court process at all.
    Why would a LL issue a S21 if the tenant was a good rent paying one!?

  • Billy the Fish

    Rather than comment here why not Google 'Home Owners Alliance', scroll down to HOA's Voice on the home page and join me by leaving a comment on the actual article?

  • icon

    My landlady has evicted me, so that she can carry out major refurbishments. I have a new flat to go to, but moving is a real nuisance. She wants to replace some very old windows, which I can understand, although they pose no safety problems and have no breaks. Also, I have a suspicion that she wishes to refurbish the flat, so that she can increase the rent. I owe no rent and have kept the flat in good order and I don't believe there are any safety issues despite the age of the flat. There ought to be some consideration of the tenant. Technically she didn't provide me with the proper section 21 notice, but I didn't want to make a fuss.

    • 05 June 2019 13:24 PM

    Your LL did not need to give you NTQ to increase rent.
    I would never evict to increase rent.
    A S13 notice is far more effective!
    But with any major works it would simply not be worthwhile retaining a tenant.
    Health and Safety issues for a start.
    But if I was the LL I would suggest you use a B&B and then return once works had been completed at perhaps an increased rent.
    I would far rather retain a good tenant somehow.
    Or perhaps the LL hires a caravan or motorhome or even a tent for the back garden!!

    S l
    • S l
    • 05 June 2019 15:23 PM

    I think you might miss the point. The council would perhaps served an improvement notice on your landlady to update or do some work on the property as you said, replace some very old windows. Agreed you said it pose no safety problems and no breaks, but when the council do not care for details, they will require the landlady to change it to upvc as in our case despite having decent good strong metal aluminium windows. The council reasoning is they want us to provide upvc with a little locked opening for tenant to air the room when they are in or not in the property which only upvc windows have. Despite doing so, tenants are far too lazy to air room and with upvc, house do not breath and this caused huge mould problems when tenants air their wet clothes constantly. So with this notice of improvement from council to spend thousands, there definitely will be an increase in rent. The council often claim consideration for the tenant as the MPs did with their new laws and regulations, despite knowing the definite consequences claiming they are ensuring high standard of living and health and safety of tenants, they failed to let the new generation vote or rentals vote know that this will cost them dearly.So perhaps you should get more tenant like yourself to tell the MPs and post your objections to them directly especially the housing minister


    If she wants to make more profit out of the property, that is her prerogative to do so. She can also put up the rent without serving notice to quit. You have the choice of moving or paying the higher rent, that is your choice. If the landlady has misjudged the issue , then she won't get a tenant at the increased rent and will lose money.. that's the risk she takes. If she DOES get a tenant, then that is clearly the market rent of the property. I see your point, really I do as I was a long term tenant myself, but unfortunately it's her property and her investment. She should be allowed to legally maximise profit however she see's fit.

    If she hasn't provided you with the proper notice however, you need to make a fuss. That is YOUR prerogative. Her responsibility is to know the correct procedure and comply with it, if she hasn't, then you need to exercise your legal rights.

  • icon

    I am sick and tired of tbis unfair rules keep being inposed. Goverments in pased sold. Council properties as nonsence low rent and high upkeep. They want privite to do same. Always will be shoer of prperties popular places.

    S l
    • S l
    • 05 June 2019 15:45 PM

    Thats why they are making losses as highlighted in previous articles. So they stop providing new housing and instead target prs to do their social responsibilities for them. They make the rules. It will only stop if someone took them to court or took the case to court to challenge the law and hopefully , finger cross, we have some decent magistrates or judges who have more common sense than them or business acumen

  • icon

    What a load of rubbish.

  • Mick Roberts

    As u lot say, why are they asking the tenants that's been evicted?
    Who have a grudge to bear and have obviously been evicted for some reason.
    U ask my 7 that I've evicted over 22 years and they will tell u I'm the worst person on the planet and I did everything wrong.
    But ask me and I will take u to hundreds of other of my tenants who will tell u I'm brilliant.

    • 06 June 2019 07:13 AM

    Perhaps there should be an option on the S21 to note reasons why S21 is being issued.
    My one reason for my five evictions would be two words


    So hardly a non-fault eviction!!
    Based on annecdotal evidence apparently my tenants think I'm great...............apart from the 5 I evicted for rent default.
    So any survey of them would produce results that I was a terrible LL.

  • S l
    • S l
    • 06 June 2019 09:43 AM

    Trust me Paul, rogue tenants are the worst. I have been in prs for years and i have had not one or two but 4 trying to lie that they paid cash and i dont give receipt. First of all, i always ask them to do standing order into my account. Secondly they pretend they paid into my account with a counterfoil without a barclays stamped to confirm the deposit into my account for rent amount. They filled out the counterfoil part for deposit at counter without the usual bank stamp when payment was made into an account. Then claimed they had been into the bank complaining. One, no evidence of payment into my account . two no bank stamped on the counterfoil for amount deposited into the account as claimed. No proof or evidence and not even on camera on date and time they claimed they went into the bank.

    • 06 June 2019 23:56 PM

    Barclays Bank will NOT allow cash credits to 3rd party accounts over the counter!
    So your tenants are lying.
    Check with your Barclays what their policy is.
    I have an idea that cash may be able to be credited to an inbranch ATM.
    LL should be aware that as a rule most
    Cheque credits over the counter no problem but most banks refuse to accept CASH credits over the counter.
    Each bank seems to have a slightly different policy.
    HSBC accept cash credits to their inside ATM.
    Basically banks want to stop cash being credited by 3rd parties.
    It is meant to prevent money laundering.
    But they gave forgotten the credit card system!!
    Paying debt with cash doesn't flag up like crediting cash to a bank account..
    Years ago when I was playing the credit card game 6 times per year I would settle a £15000 credit card debt with cash.
    Never any problem.
    But your Tenant is definitely lying.
    Next time get him to do a selfie.
    With Barclays I believe cash may be credited via their deposit box.

  • S l
    • S l
    • 07 June 2019 08:43 AM

    Hi PB, the cash deposit box is a new thing or current thing. This was years ago when the cash deposit box wasnt introduce yet. If pay cash into any account, payer have to fill in a deposit slip and get the counterfoil stamped as proof of payment by any bank over the counter. Needless to say i lost 7 months rent with 1 month deposit to cover cleaning and damages and definitely not enough to cover rent arrears. Not all landlords have deep pockets and if they do, nobody likes to make losses and clear up after rogue tenants. Its a shame about Paul Steson experience. If the property been condemn, there is no way the landlord can get tenants without being sued in court by the council. Maybe the council served an improvement notice and he complied and therefore able to continue renting out. I would have thought landlord generally evict because of rent arrears, not purely because he is being asked to fix the boiler. The profit of keeping a decent tenant paying his rent would outweigh the cost of fixing the boiler.


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