24 Jan 24

Two thirds of private renters have experienced a problem with the quality or condition of their property in the past six months, according to new research.

A survey of over 2,000 private renters was carried out by the TDS Foundation which works to advance education about the private rented sector.

It found that whilst 40 per cent of tenants did not have any problem with the quality of their rented home in the past six months, 60 per cent encountered one or more problems.

The top five problems included leaks or problems with plumbing (21 per cent), difficulties keeping their home warm (20 per cent), repairs not being carried out (18 per cent), serious problems with damp or mould (16 per cent) and outside doors, walls, roofs or windows being in need of repair (16 per cent).

Of this group, 85 per cent reported the problems they had with their property to their landlord or letting agent, with over three quarters (78 per cent) saying the issue was either fully or partially addressed.

The minority of tenants who did not report the issues to their landlord or letting agent said this was due to a perceived ineffectiveness of reporting (30 per cent), the hassle involved (27 per cent), fears about not being seen as a “good tenant” (23 per cent) and concerns about potential rent increases (22 per cent).

Dr Jennifer Harris, Head of Policy and Research at TDS Group, says: “Whilst a large proportion of tenants are experiencing problems with the condition of their property, they are being addressed by landlords in a majority of cases when they are reported.

“That said, it is worrying that over one in ten tenants who had problems with their homes did not feel confident reporting it.

“The Government’s plans to reform the rental market, including developing a decent homes standard for private rented housing, need to ensure tenants feel confident to speak out where their homes meet all required standards. 

“The TDS Foundation will continue to work to ensure tenants fully understand and make use of their rights when calling out the minority of landlords failing to tackle poor quality housing.”

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