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Joshua, Lawyer
Category: UK Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 25358
Experience:  LL.B (Hons), Higher Prof. Dip. Law & Practice
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By how much can my landlord increase my rent in a private flat

Resolved Question:

By how much can my landlord increase my rent in a private flat paid for by the Benefit Office when I have been in the property for 8 years already? I am 74 years old.
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: UK Property Law
Expert:  Joshua replied 4 years ago.
Welcome to JustAnswer! If you've queries once you've read my answer do ask. When satisfied, please kindly click the Green ACCEPT button

  1. Do you have an assured shorthold tenancy please?
  2. When does the fixed period expire or has it already expired?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
I have a shorthold tenancy which started in February 2011 at which time I had paid an increase of 4% over 2010. The tenancy expires in February, next month. My landlord has asked for a 7% rise for this year only. What are my rights? Can my landlord throw me out from the property? I am very anxious because I cannot move (physically and mentally). BUT, most of all, I need to know what the law says. My landlord even refuses to contact me but rather my guarantor who is anxious for me not to move...thus I am in a great predicament.
Expert:  Joshua replied 4 years ago.
Thanks. If you do not agree to sign the new tenancy agreement your landlord can give you two months clear notice to move out of the property. On the other hand if you do sign, you will be bound by new fixed term and a the new rent figure.

You and the landlord a free to negotiate in respect of rent. You have the right to refer any rent increases to a rent assessment committee who have the power to fix the rent at the level they consider fair for a period of 12 months. Be cautious however they have the power to put the rent up as well as down and in addition the landlord can still choose to evict you so if staying in the property is essential to you the landlord has almost all of the cards.

Consider initially proposing a lower rent than the one the landlord has proposed. Do not advise the landlord you are desperate to stay in the property as he will know he can get what he wants from you if you do. Providing he does not know this if he thinks you might move out even a short period of vacancy will wipe out any increase the landlord wants to put the rent up by.

Whilst the right to refer the matter to a rent assessment committee is in theory a strong right, unfortunately because the landlord still has a right to evict you regardless it is often of limited use or attractiveness to do so. THe best approach is healthy negotiation to achieve a compromise maintaining an aloof "take it or leave" approach so the landlord does not know you are too keen.
Joshua and other UK Property Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
This means that I have no rights as a tenant for the 8 years I have been here? This landlord refuses to keep up the flat to any decent standard, has refused to let me paint or otherwise decorate the flat, left the flat for me in a deplorable seems to me that I don't have any rights at all. However, moving out is a horrible option: I have begun to think of this as my home.
Expert:  Joshua replied 4 years ago.
You do have rights but you do not have direct security of tenure. There are ways in which you can potentially exploit your position.

I would be delighted to continue to assist. Please kindly consider clicking ACCEPT. I will continue to assist with your follow up question without further charge.

Kind regards
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
I have been asked to pay an additional sum equal to the original amount. How can I obtain your answer without further charge as you write above?
Expert:  Joshua replied 4 years ago.
Thanks - you do not have to click ACCEPT more than once - you will not be charged again if you don't. As above you do not have direct security of tenure but if you are unable to reach agreement with the landlord you can use some of what follows potentially to your advantage.

If you have signed new agreements with the landlord then your deposit should be protected with a deposit protection scheme. If it is not then any notice of eviction the landlord serves on you is invalid.

You can check on line using the links on the below page:

The notice must give you at least two clear months notice and if served after the end of the tenancy can only expire the day before rent is payable. Any other date would render the notice invalid and the landlord would have to start again.

If he is not keeping the property up to standard you can ask the Local Authority to attend to carry out a Housing Health and Safety Assessment. If the property falls below their required standards they can serve improvement notices on the landlord. You can also use their report to claim compensation if he has failed to keep the property up to standard by way of a rent reduction for loss of amenity.

None of the above will give you guaranteed tenure but they would allow you to potentially extend the period you could stay in the property and make the landlord live up to his obligations and compensate you if he has failed to do so.

Ultimately the only way to extend your tenancy though is to reach agreement with the landlord as to the new rental figure.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Is this UK law or US law or are they the same? I have no rights according to your reply...and have only 2 months to vacate the property?


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Province/Country relating to question : UK

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