Rent increase after 6 months!

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    Rent increase after 6 months!

    I am currently renting and the tenancy started on 1st September on AST. I received a letter from the letting agents today advising me that my rent has increased from the current £1100 to £1200. Although the agents claim that this is in line with inflation in clearly isn't. Is it legal to increase the rent after 6 months?

    #2
    It depends whether there's a clause allowing it in your agreement. If not, and assuming your tenancy is now periodic, rather than a new agreement after 6 months, the landlord/agent should use a Section 13 notice to advise you of the rent increae, giving you at least a month's notice. If you think the increase is unreasonable, you can appeal to the rent service, but of course you risk them saying it should be higher, and you also risk annoying the landlord and may put your tenancy at risk.

    Comment


      #3
      Thank you. They sent me a letter giving me 4 weeks notice is that a section 13 notice? Can they increase my rent every 6 months? When you advise that may tenancy may be at risk do you mean immediately or that they could give me notice at the end of this 6 months.

      Comment


        #4
        The general advice given to landlords contemplating increasing the rent is to do it only to match local market rents.

        They are advised to consider the risk of alienating a perfectly reliable tenant and and consider if it would be counter productive to experience a void period if their tenant decides to leave.

        As a tenant, your choice is to negotiate with them, accept the rent increase or move out.
        Last edited by Beeber; 15-03-2008, 12:51 PM. Reason: remove reference to fixed term.

        Comment


          #5
          At £1100 a month it was already above the local market rent. If I refuse the rent increase would I have to move out immediately? If I accept could they then increase the rent in another 6 months?

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by haggard View Post
            At £1100 a month it was already above the local market rent. If I refuse the rent increase would I have to move out immediately? If I accept could they then increase the rent in another 6 months?
            In order to get you out the landlord will be subject to all the normal rules e.g. section 21 or section 8 notices.

            I presume that the deposit was protected (if you paid one).

            Write back a short simple letter
            Thank you for your letter dated xx February.

            The increase in rent you proposed is not acceptable and without my agreement you cannot at present legally demand the new rent.

            I confirm that I will continue to pay my normal rent of £1,100.
            Await their response.

            Bear in mind that by doing this they are sure to enact s21 procedures as soon as they can, and I trust you did not intend this to be a long term let.
            On some things I am very knowledgeable, on other things I am stupid. Trouble is, sometimes I discover that the former is the latter or vice versa, and I don't know this until later - maybe even much later. Because of the number of posts I have done, I am now a Senior Member. However, read anything I write with the above in mind.

            Comment


              #7
              I didn't think the rent could be raised in the first year?? Even if they can raise it now I know for a fact that the rent cannot then increase for another 12 months.

              I have a feeling rent can only be increased annually.

              Write back to that effect and see what happens!
              GOVERNMENT HEALTH WARNING: I am a woman and am therefore prone to episodes of PMT... if you don't like what I have to say you can jolly well put it in your pipe and SMOKE IT!!

              Oh and on a serious note... I am NOT a Legal person and therefore anything I post could be complete and utter drivel... but its what I have learned in the University called Life!

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by justaboutsane View Post
                I didn't think the rent could be raised in the first year?? Even if they can raise it now I know for a fact that the rent cannot then increase for another 12 months.
                My thoughts to, but I don't have time to look at the 1988 HA at the moment.

                That's why my suggested reply was not specific - let the agent work out the error!
                On some things I am very knowledgeable, on other things I am stupid. Trouble is, sometimes I discover that the former is the latter or vice versa, and I don't know this until later - maybe even much later. Because of the number of posts I have done, I am now a Senior Member. However, read anything I write with the above in mind.

                Comment


                  #9
                  "If your tenancy is for a fixed period of time (known as 'fixed term'), such as six months or a year, your landlord cannot increase the rent until the fixed term ends. The only exceptions to this are if you agree to the increase (using a special form if you are a regulated tenant) or there is a clause in your agreement saying that the rent will be increased."

                  There's other info on that page regarding rent increases.

                  http://england.shelter.org.uk/advice/advice-5735.cfm

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Thanks for the replies. I am not sure what 'fixed tenancy' means. I am currently on a 6 month ongoing agreement. There isn't any clause in my tenancy agreement about increases etc. Unfortunately I was hoping to stay here on a long term let. I did check the 1988 HA s.13 at, as far as I understand, it states that the rent cannot be increased within the first year. But it may be hopeful thinking on my part. If this is the correct and I let them know - can they still enforce s21 procedures?

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by haggard View Post
                      Thanks for the replies. I am not sure what 'fixed tenancy' means. I am currently on a 6 month ongoing agreement. There isn't any clause in my tenancy agreement about increases etc. Unfortunately I was hoping to stay here on a long term let. I did check the 1988 HA s.13 at, as far as I understand, it states that the rent cannot be increased within the first year. But it may be hopeful thinking on my part. If this is the correct and I let them know - can they still enforce s21 procedures?

                      Quote "I am not sure what 'fixed tenancy' means. I am currently on a 6 month ongoing agreement."

                      You have a fixed term Assured Shorthold Tenancy (AST for short) in your case this seems to be for 6 months (you can't be thrown out during that time period). After that your tenancy can either be renewed again on a fixed term (for example - 6 months or 12 months) or if nothing is done it becomes a periodic tenancy, which just goes on and on until you leave or are asked to leave.

                      If you are still within your fixed term the landlord can issue you with a section 21a and require possession of the property after the date the fixed term ends and he doesn't have to give a reason for doing so. Were you issued with a Section 21 at the start of your tenancy or since? If you were, then you'd be expected to leave at the end of your 6 months term. If you stay on regardless (but still pay rent) the landlord will have to go to court to get a court order to get you out. This can take a few weeks.

                      If a landlord wants you out after your tenancy becomes periodic, he has to give you a section 21b notice giving you two months notice which must end on a rent due date.

                      Hope this helps.

                      (Please correct me if any of this is wrong, senior members)

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Bagpuss is OK except for the cross-references. There are NO s.21a and s.21b Notices!
                        What there are, however, are Notices under s.21(1)(b) and s.21(4)(a). Use only one.
                        S.21(1)(b) is served DURING fixed term.
                        S.21(4)(a) is served AFTER fixed term.
                        The Notice expiry calculation differs between them too.
                        JEFFREY SHAW, solicitor [and Topic Expert], Nether Edge Law*
                        1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
                        2. Telephone advice: see http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=34638.
                        3. For paid advice about conveyancing/leaseholds/L&T, contact me* and become a private client.
                        4. *- Contact info: click on my name (blue-highlight link).

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Thank you that has made it clearer. I wasn't aware that I was now on a periodic tenancy and can be given notice at any time. I rang the agents and they confirmed that according to 1998 HA s.18 they can only increase my rent annually. They also confirmed that I could be given notice at any time (which is really depressing) but they didn't think it would benefit the LL to do that as he could lose more by having the property vacant. Thanks for your help everyone.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            haggard: the 'rent increase annually only' reference should be to s.13 of the Housing Act 1988; there wasn't a 1998 Act.
                            JEFFREY SHAW, solicitor [and Topic Expert], Nether Edge Law*
                            1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
                            2. Telephone advice: see http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=34638.
                            3. For paid advice about conveyancing/leaseholds/L&T, contact me* and become a private client.
                            4. *- Contact info: click on my name (blue-highlight link).

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Yes you are right. Fortunately I did quote the correct year to the agents. Not sure why I typed it incorrectly.

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