Regulations to protect tenants concerned about rent increases following the ending of the emergency rent cap have been laid in the Scottish Parliament.
From 1 April onwards, subject to parliamentary approval, the process for rent adjudication will temporarily be modified for one year.
Any tenant who wishes to dispute a rent increase notice can apply for rent adjudication. In such cases, Rent Service Scotland or the First-tier Tribunal will set rent based on the lowest of the following three figures:
- the open market rate
- the rent requested by the landlord
- and a comparator based on the difference between the market rate and current rent
Tenants’ Rights Minister Patrick Harvie said:
“Our emergency legislation has led the way in the UK in capping in-tenancy rent increases, protecting tenants across Scotland from the worst impacts of the cost-of-living crisis. However, Parliament set a final deadline for these temporary protections to come to an end from 1 April 2024.
“From 1 April we are proposing temporary changes to the way rents are decided when tenants challenge a rent increase to provide a level of protection for private tenants which remains far greater than anywhere else in the UK. It will also enable landlords to react to an increase in costs and reinvest in our private rented sector.
“At the same time, we are committed to bringing in a long-term system of rent controls and creating new rights for tenants through our forthcoming Housing Bill.”