According to the latest annual report from The Property Ombudsman, more people in the private rented sector are prepared to launch a challenge when dissatisfied with some aspect of their tenancy.
This, the report says, is due to landlords and tenants following the general consumer trend of challenging when satisfaction is not given, as well as the growing number of agents signing up to redress schemes.
It was estimated one year ago that only 60% of letting agents were members of one of the three government-approved redress schemes. However, following the introduction of new legislation on 1 October 2014 making it a legal requirement for agents to sign up with one, the proportion had increased to 85% by the end of the year.
The TPO report reveals a 40% rise in the number of lettings cases received. Cases resolved via mediation increased by one-third, while cases resolved via formal review increased by 10%.
Over half (54%) of complainants were landlords, and 44% were tenants. Repairs and maintenance issues accounted for 11% of lettings issues, but the most common specified issue was found to be communication failure (17%). The average lettings award rose by 27%, from £411.97 to £524.10.