7 problems with private renting

Examples of common problems from when your tenancy starts to after it's ended.

Your landlord hasn't protected your deposit

Your tenancy deposit must be protected with an approved tenancy deposit protection scheme if you are an assured shorthold tenant.

Your landlord has 30 days from when you pay to protect it and provide you with information about the scheme used.

You can take your landlord to court to claim compensation if they don't.

Your home is leaking or squeaking

From roofs to rodents, the things that can go wrong in a rented home can seem endless.

Your benefits are delayed

If you make a new claim for universal credit, you’ll have to wait at least 5 weeks for your first payment.

Rent arrears caused by benefit delays can lead to eviction. A universal credit advance could help you cover essentials like rent.

If you make a new claim for housing benefit, your council’s benefits department should process your claim within 14 days if you’ve provided all the information they need.

If they can’t process your claim within that time, they should make a payment on account to help you avoid building up rent arrears.

Your benefits won't cover the rent

Housing benefit or universal credit won’t always cover your rent.

Ask the council about a discretionary housing payment to top up your housing benefit or universal credit housing costs if you’re struggling to pay the rent.

Your partner has left you to manage alone

Taking on a joint tenancy means you are both responsible for paying the rent.

If one of you leaves, the landlord can ask either one or both of you for the money.

Whoever is left behind risks being evicted if the rent isn't paid.

Your landlord asks you to leave

Your landlord can give you a section 21 notice if they want to end your tenancy. You don't have to leave at the end of the notice. Your landlord must apply to court for a possession order. 

Your landlord won't return your deposit

You cleaned up properly, didn't break anything and paid all your rent but your landlord still won't refund your tenancy deposit.

Last updated: 27 September 2019

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