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Repairs if you rent from a private landlord or letting agent

Apply to the tribunal if your landlord is not doing repairs

If your landlord refuses to do repairs that they’re responsible for, apply to the First-tier Tribunal (Housing and Property Chamber).

The tribunal can order your landlord to do the repairs. It’s free to apply, and you do not need a solicitor.

You can also apply for compensation.

Before applying to the tribunal

You must report the repair in writing and give your landlord or letting agent a reasonable time to fix it.

If repairs have still not been done, email or write to your landlord again. They could do the repairs more quickly if you warn them you’ll apply to the tribunal.

Use our template letter to complain when:

If the repair is affecting your health

Contact the council’s environmental health department. They could order your landlord to fix any repair problems that are affecting your health. They could also help you apply to the tribunal.

Use our template letter to contact environmental health

How to apply to the tribunal

You'll need to fill in an application form and sent it with evidence of the problem.

You can only apply during your tenancy. If you move out, your application will be cancelled.

You can make a separate application for compensation any time during your tenancy or after it has ended.

Applying to make your landlord do repairs

Download Form A on the tribunal website.

Fill in the form and send it with:

  • a copy of your tenancy agreement

  • copies of any letters or emails you sent your landlord about the repairs

  • any other evidence you think is relevant, such as photos of the repair problem or doctor's letters if your health is affected

If you rent from a letting agency

It’s still your landlord’s responsibility to do repairs. Write the landlord's details in section 6 and the letting agency's details in section 7.

If you do not know the landlord’s name and address, check the Scottish landlord register or ask your letting agent for their details. They must give you this within 21 days.

Letting agents must tell the landlord about repairs and keep you informed. You can make a separate application against the letting agency if they have not followed their duties.

Applying for compensation

The tribunal can order your landlord to pay you compensation if repairs have:

  • cost you money

  • affected your health

  • damaged your belongings

  • caused inconvenience – for example, if repair problems meant you could not use part of your home

You’ll need to make a separate application to ask for compensation.

Download Form F and the Notes on Completing Form F on the tribunal website.

In section 5a, write:

  • 'rule 111' if you have a private residential tenancy

  • 'rule 70' if you have an assured tenancy or a short assured tenancy

In section 5c, say how much money you want your landlord to pay you and why.

Include proof of the repair issues and how they affected you, such as:

  • receipts for items you had to replace

  • doctor’s letters for any health issues

  • any emails or letters you sent your landlord about the repairs

  • photos of the repair problems and any belongings that were damaged

  • any other proof of how the problem impacted your life – for example, if you had to miss work or move somewhere more expensive

Where to send your application

You can send your form and evidence by email or post.


Post: Glasgow Tribunals Centre, 20 York Street, Glasgow, G2 8GT

After you apply

The tribunal will write to you and your landlord to tell you what happens next.

They’ll set a date to inspect your home. You’ll also have to attend a case discussion or hearing. This usually happens over the phone.

Check our guidance on what happens after you apply

If the tribunal decides repairs are needed

They can send your landlord a repairing standard enforcement order. This tells them what they must do to fix the repairs and how long they have to do it.

It’s a criminal offence for your landlord to ignore the order. They must prove that the repairs have been completed before the order can be lifted.

If your landlord does not do the repairs by the deadline, the tribunal can order them to reduce your rent until the problem is fixed. This is called a rent relief order.

Alternatives to going to the tribunal

The tribunal process can take several months.

If the repairs are minor or urgent, you could arrange repairs yourself and ask your landlord to pay you back the money.

This can be risky. Your landlord could try to evict you if the repairs are done poorly or cause damage, or if you deduct money from your rent to pay for them. Always ask permission in writing first.

Check our guidance on doing repairs yourself

Some people withhold rent to force their landlord to do repairs. This is not recommended, as you could be evicted for rent arrears.

Check our guidance on withholding rent

If you’re worried about eviction

You cannot be evicted for asking for repairs to be done or for applying to the tribunal.

You have the right to live in your home free from repair problems.

If you're worried that you'll be evicted, speak to a Shelter Scotland adviser.

Last updated: 20 July 2023

Housing laws differ between Scotland and England.

This content applies to Scotland only.

Get advice if you're in England