If your landlord wants to increase your rent, there are steps they must follow. These steps are different depending on the type of tenancy you have.
If you do not know what type of tenancy you have, use Shelter Scotland's tenancy checker.
Private residential tenancy
A private residential tenancy is any tenancy created on or after 1 December 2017. If you have a private residential tenancy your landlord can only increase your rent once a year and must give you 3 months notice of any increase.
They must use the 'landlord's rent-increase notice to tenants' form to let you know about any increase.
Scottish secure and short Scottish secure tenants
If you rent from the council or a registered social landlord (RSL), your landlord must:
- consult you before increasing your rent
- give you at least 4 weeks' notice before the rent increase
You may also have the right to have a fair rent determined by a rent officer. If you disagree with the rent officer's decision, you have the right to go to the First-tier Tribunal for Scotland Housing and Property Chamber. They will decide whether the proposed increase is fair.
If you're an assured tenant, your rent cannot be increase during the fixed term unless you agree to it or your tenancy agreement says it will be increased. After any fixed term expires your rent can be increased if:
- your landlord gives written notice of the proposed increase on an AT2 form (they can only give you one of these forms each year)
- your landlord gives you a written notice to change the terms of your tenancy, including the rent charged, on an AT1(L) form (they can only give you this form after serving you with a notice to quit)
Your landlord needs to give you at least 1 rental period worth of notice before the rent increase takes effect.
Short assured tenants
If you have a short assured tenancy, your landlord can increase the rent when they renew your tenancy agreement at the end of the fixed term. However, they can't increase the rent during the fixed term.
If you're a regulated tenant, your landlord can only increase your rent by following the procedure for registering a fair rent. If you disagree with the fair rent that has been registered, you can appeal to the Housing and Property Chamber.
Challenging a rent increase
If you think a rent increase is too high, you may have the right to go to the Housing and Property Chamber. You can do this if you:
- are an assured tenant
- are a short assured tenant
- are a regulated tenant
- were an assured tenant of a housing association and your tenancy was converted to a Scottish secure tenancy in September 2002
If you have a private residential tenancy, you can apply to a rent officer if you think a rent increase is unreasonable. They will decide how much rent you need to pay. You must use a 'Referral by a Tenant to a Rent Officer' notice. Use our form to create this notice and then send it to the rent officer.
You can see a read-only version on gov.scot.
Appealing a fair rent
You can appeal about a fair rent that has been registered if you:
- are a regulated tenant
- were a secure tenant of a housing association and your tenancy was converted to a Scottish secure tenancy in September 2002
You'll need to appeal to the Housing and Property Chamber.
Will my housing benefit be affected?
If you're claiming housing benefit and your rent is increased, you should tell your council housing benefit department straight away. You'll have to provide evidence of the rent increase. This could be a letter from your landlord or a written decision from the Housing and Property Chamber.
The council will look at your housing benefit claim and let you know your new entitlement. If this does not cover the whole of your rent, and you cannot pay the rest yourself, get advice from your local council.
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