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Propertymark guide helps tenants complain and challenge rent rises

A new guide from Propertymark explains the rights which private rental tenants have - and sets out how they can challenge “high” rent increases, and complain if they are unhappy. 

In the section marked “Challenge High Rent Increases” the trade body says:  “You have the right to challenge rent increases that you feel are unfair, the process is slightly different depending on where in the UK you live. To prevent unfair rent increases, landlords must abide by the following rules:

- They must notify you before they increase the rent;


- The rent increase must be fair (i.e. on a similar level to average rents locally);

- They must give you at least six months’ notice or one month if you are on a periodic tenancy

“If you feel the rent increase is unfair, you should first speak to your landlord or managing agent and try to come to an agreement. If you cannot agree, you can ask a tribunal to decide for you. Visit the Citizens Advice website for more information.”

And in a section called How To Complain, the Propertymark guide reads:

When tenants feel as though the conduct and service of an agent/ the condition of a property is not up to scratch, they should first, as with any complaint, contact them directly about the problem.

“This gives the agent a chance to put the situation right and is the fastest route to getting your complaint solved. All agencies must provide a complaints procedure for their business by law, ask them for a copy directly if you cannot find it on their website.

“It’s best to put your complaint in writing and you should receive a response within 15 days. Keep copies of any correspondence and ask them to confirm:

- Who is handling your complaint

- What they propose to do to resolve it

- How long it will take to resolve

“It is a legal requirement for property agents to belong to a Government-approved independent redress scheme.

“There are two schemes to look out for: The Property Ombudsman (TPO) and Property Redress Scheme (PRS) and most agents display which one they belong to on their website.

“If your complaint has not been resolved by the agent, having been given a reasonable time to do so, then you should contact the redress scheme. Redress schemes have the authority to ensure that the agent takes action to remedy any problem arising from a complaint. If the redress scheme supports your complaint, they can also impose that the agent grants you compensation.

“If neither the agent nor the independent redress scheme has provided a satisfactory outcome to your complaint then, provided the agent is one of our Propertymark members, you can send your complaint to us.

“We will investigate complaints against our members where there is evidence that the agent has breached our conduct and membership rules, this includes:

- Misuse of client money;

- Failure to uphold high standards of ethical and professional practice;

- Failure to protect and promote clients’ interests;

- Conflicts of interest;

- Failure to answer correspondence;

- Any act of dishonesty or conviction of a criminal offence.”

Other sections of the guide include Tenancy Information, Safe Property that Meet A Safe Standard; Electrical Safety; Quiet Enjoyment; Further Changes; and Are You Using A Propertymark Agent?

Nathan Emerson, chief executive of Propertymark, comments: “It’s crucial that tenants understand their rights when renting a privately rented property from a landlord whether that be through the landlord themselves or via a letting agent. Regardless of who you’re in communication with as a tenant, the same rules apply and all legislation in place protects you from poor-quality homes or rogue operations.

“We urge tenants to use a Propertymark Protected agent when renting their next home to ensure the property they live in will abide by legislation and keep them safe and secure.”

  • Fed Up Landlord

    More woke signalling from an organisation supposed to be supporting agents and landlords. Soon to come on their letterheading:

    " PropertyMark- Powered by and a subsidary of Shelter.

    "A Generation Rent Company"

  • jeremy clarke

    Remind me again how many tenants pay an annual membership fee to this useless bunch! They certainly do nothing positive for those who do pay membership!

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    • D G
    • 23 April 2024 09:20 AM

    They don't seem to be telling the tenants, if they ask the council to review the rent, the council can increase it if they believe it to be too low.

  • icon

    Propertymark twinned with Shelter. 🤬🤬🤬

  • icon

    Can’t wait to sell up and leave this nonsense in my rear view mirror


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