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Get the Rent To Rent house in order, demands Propertymark

Propertymark has come out in support of the National Trading Standards Estate and Lettings Agency Team’s probe into Rent-to-Rent.   

NTSELAT has concluded a three month consultation on Rent-to-Rent - sometimes known as Guaranteed Rent - where a property owner or ‘superior landlord’ decides to rent or lease their property to another entity, usually at a below-market rate, in return for a ‘guaranteed’ rent. 

This allows the ‘superior landlord’ to delegate responsibilities to another party, such as letting out the property or establishing new tenancies. This model is typically a standard one in the Rent-to-Rent sector and can be viewed as an opportunity for agents to grow their business.  


There are many alternative Rent-to-Rent models such as turning family homes into Houses in Multiple Occupation which are commonly used by student landlords, and short-term lets where the property in question is operated on a short-term basis, such as  for holiday makers.  

Other Rent-to-Rent models include local authorities agreeing to enter into a Rent-to-Rent agreement to boost their housing stock to stop homelessness, and sub-letting agreements like the ones used for social housing.  

In its response to the NTSELAT consultation, Propertymark shared some concerns about Rent-to-Rent, which include a lack of clarity over expectations and responsibilities from both the ‘superior landlord’ and Rent-to-Rent operator, due to the under-regulation and lack of standards within these schemes. This results in incidents whereby maintenance obligations are left uncompleted by both parties.  

Another concern the professional body had was that landlords who lack knowledge regarding their responsibilities to tenants could be persuaded to join this kind of scheme, as they could  be convinced they can earn a ‘passive income’ from guaranteed rent. 

Therefore, the initiative can pave the way for more rouge landlords who have no interest in maintaining their property. Many people can therefore enter the sector for the wrong reasons or have the wrong impression about how easy it is to rent a property.

Propertymark proposes that to improve  Rent-to-Rent, there must be transparent expectations before the ‘superior landlord’ and Rent-to-Rent operator sign a contract, such as the awareness that the ‘superior landlord’ has no control over any tenants that sign up to reside in their property.  

Propertymark also suggested that a letting agent can collaborate alongside inexperienced ‘superior landlords’ and Rent-to-Rent operators to guarantee they comprehend their duties to each other and to tenants.  

Also, the professional body stated that Rent-to-Rent schemes must be regulated to stop abuse of the initiative, such as signing up to a deposit protection scheme, establishing client money protection, independent redress, and a requirement to meet housing standards alongside the introduction of the Decent Homes Standard.  

One longstanding piece of regulation that Propertymark believes will raise standards in the Rent-to-Rent sector is the enactment of the recommendations of the 2019 Working Group into the Regulation of Property Agents, which will lead to mandatory requirements for letting agents in England and for estate agents across the UK so that they are aware of the latest legislative developments affecting the housing sector.  

Nathan Emerson, CEO at Propertymark, says:  “Many Propertymark members have had positive experiences with Rent-to-Rent operators, though there are still some outstanding issues about the practice despite it being a  potential opportunity for agents to expand their business in innovative ways. 

“However, Rent to Rent schemes are often advertised as enabling people to earn a passive income with little effort, which could lead to many people entering this sector with the wrong expectations about how simple it is to rent a property. 

“Additionally, the lack of regulations over these kinds of schemes make them vulnerable to bad actors, who have in some cases rented property to criminals.

“Propertymark is keen to work with the National Trading Standards Estate and Lettings Agency Team to raise standards and expectations of how Rent-to-Rent works in practice.”


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