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Your rights if you have a regulated tenancy

You may have a regulated tenancy if you moved in before 2 January 1989, and you rent from a private landlord or letting agent. If you’ve moved into a different home with the same landlord since the tenancy started, you should still have a regulated tenancy.

You have the right to a fair rent and strong protections against eviction.

If you live with your landlord, you will not have a regulated tenancy. You may have a Part VII contract if you moved in before 1989.

Contact a Shelter Scotland adviser to check your rights.

Your right to a fair rent

At any time during your tenancy, you can apply to have a fair rent registered. In the application, say how much you want the rent to be and give details about your home.

A rent officer will set a fair rent based on factors including:

  • the size and condition of your home

  • where your home is located

  • what is included in the rent, such as furniture or services

To make a decision, the rent officer may need to inspect your home and speak to both you and your landlord.

If your landlord wants to increase the rent, they have to follow the same process.

Once a fair rent has been registered

The rent is usually fixed for at least 3 years, unless either:

  • you and your landlord agree on a different rent amount in writing

  • you and your landlord make a new joint application to have a fair rent registered

  • you or your landlord make a new application because of a relevant change in circumstances, such as major repair work

After 3 years, if you or your landlord want to change the rent, either of you can make a new application.

Your responsibilities

Your tenancy agreement explains your responsibilities. These usually include:

  • paying your rent on time

  • taking care of the property and keeping it clean

  • reporting any repair problems and allowing access for repairs

  • not causing a nuisance to your neighbours

You may have other responsibilities. If you break any of the terms of your tenancy agreement, your landlord could try to evict you.

When and how your landlord can evict you

Your landlord cannot evict you without a valid reason. They need to follow the correct process and get an eviction order from the tribunal.

If you’re worried about eviction, check our advice on the eviction process.

If your landlord changes

Your regulated tenancy continues on the same terms if:

  • your landlord sells your home while you’re a tenant

  • your landlord dies and someone else inherits the property

Your new landlord cannot make you sign a new tenancy agreement. If they want you to leave, they must follow the correct eviction process.

If you need more advice

To understand your rights, or if your landlord tries to change your tenancy agreement, contact a Shelter Scotland adviser.

Last updated: 9 August 2022

Housing laws differ between Scotland and England.

This content applies to Scotland only.

Get advice if you're in England