Your private landlord has certain legal responsibilities even if they are not mentioned in your tenancy agreement.
Before your tenancy starts
Before renting out a room or property, private landlords and agents are legally required to check your immigration status and the status of any adult who is living with you.
This is called a right to rent check.
Start of tenancy information
At the start of your tenancy the landlord must give you:
- an energy performance certificate (EPC)
- a gas safety certificate if your home has gas appliances
Your landlord must protect your tenancy deposit in a deposit protection scheme if you're an assured shorthold tenant.
If your deposit should have been protected but wasn't:
- you can claim compensation
- it can be more difficult for your landlord to end your tenancy
Lodgers' deposits don't have to be protected.
Your landlord should return your deposit when your tenancy ends unless they have a reason to make deductions.
Your landlord is responsible for most repairs in your home.
If your landlord needs access to the property to inspect its condition they should:
- give at least 24 hours notice in writing
- arrange a suitable time to visit
Health and safety
Your landlord must:
- arrange gas safety checks every 12 months by a Gas Safe registered engineer
- make sure wiring and electrical appliances are safe
- provide smoke alarms on each floor and carbon monoxide detectors in any room with a coal fire or wood burning stove
Smoke alarms are not required if you live with your landlord.
Rent and rent increases
Your landlord must tell you when and how your rent should be paid. If you pay your rent weekly, your landlord must provide a rent book.
Landlords must follow rules on rent increases that vary according to the type of tenancy you have.
Letting you enjoy your home
Landlords must let you live in your home without unnecessary interference.
Your landlord should not let themselves into your home without your permission.
Your landlord should not harass you or make it difficult for you to live in your home.
Your landlord needs to give you notice in writing and get a court order before court bailiffs can be used evict to you from:
- an assured shorthold tenancy - the most common private tenancy type
- an assured tenancy
- a regulated tenancy
A court order isn't needed for the eviction of lodgers.
It's an illegal eviction if a landlord tries to force you to leave without following the correct procedure. This is a criminal offence.
Last updated 20 Sep 2019 | © Shelter
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