Registration of a fair rent

As with any tenancy entered into by a landlord and tenant, the terms of the contract apply initially, including any agreement as to the rent.

Following this, either the landlord or the tenant has the right to apply for a fair rent to be registered for the property.

This content applies to Scotland

Registration of fair rent

An application to fix a fair rent must be made to the rent officer and can be made by the tenant or her/his landlord or jointly by both parties. An application by one of a number of joint tenants will be invalid, unless s/he has authority to apply on behalf of the others. [1] The application, on the form prescribed by regulations, [2] must state the amount of proposed rent. The rent officer will set a fair rent and s/he must hold a consultation if either party request it. Both parties are entitled to be represented at this consultation. If either party is unhappy with the rent officer's decision, s/he can appeal to the First Tier Tribunal Housing and Property Chamber for a rehearing within 28 days of the rent officer's decision. If an appeal is made outwith the 28-day time limit, the rent officer can refer the case to the tribunal or seek guidance from it. The First Tier Tribunal Housing and Property Chamber can hear an appeal even if it is late. [3]

Advisers should make their clients aware that in many cases where tenants refer rent officer fair rents to First Tier Tribunal Housing and Property Chamber, the rent can be increased above the rent officer's level. A registered rent takes effect from the date of registration by the rent officer. Where the rent is determined by the tribunal, it takes effect from the date of the tribunal decision. A registered rent is effective for three years from the date of registration. The fair rent applies to the premises, not the tenancy, so long as it is let on a protected tenancy. If the form of occupation changes (for example, an assured tenancy is created) the fair rent will not apply to the occupier.

Last updated: 27 January 2020

Footnotes

  • [1]

    R v Rent Officer for Camden LBC ex p Felix (1989) 21 HLR 34

  • [2]

    Rent Regulation (Forms and Information etc) (Scotland) Regulations 1991 SI 1991/1521, as amended by the Rent Regulation (Forms and Information etc) (Scotland) Regulations 1993 SI 1993/647 and the Housing (Scotland) Act 2006 (Consequential Amendments) Order 2007 SSI 2007/475

  • [3]

    sch.5 part 1 para.6 and para.7 Rent (Scotland) Act 1984 as amended by sch.6 para.5(c) and para.6(d) Housing (Scotland) Act 2006