What do lower income tenants in Scotland’s private rented sector want to see from a new Rented Sector?

Tom Simcock, Kim McKee, Adriana Soaita, Jennifer Harris, Tom Moore, Alex Marsh, Gareth James

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper


The private rented sector (PRS) is now home to one in seven Scottish households. The sector has grown significantly over the last 15 years and now houses a diverse population, including families with children, low-income and other vulnerable groups, many of whom face difficulties in accessing other tenures (Cole et al., 2016; McKee et al., 2020; Soaita et al., 2020). Previous research underscores a range of challenges facing low-income private renters including: unaffordable rents, insecurity and precarity, and accommodation in disrepair (McKee et al., 2020; Moore & Dunning, 2017). Across the UK, there has been legislative and regulatory reform to change the experience of private renting (Marsh & Gibb, 2019). In Scotland, significant reforms have included the Private Housing (Tenancies) (Scotland) Act 2016, which introduced a range of changes including the new Private Residential Tenancy, Rent Pressure Zones, and changes to security of tenure. The Scottish Government has committed to publishing a new Rented Sector Strategy, that is informed by renters, and which will then inform a new Housing Bill in 2022.

This research, funded by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation and Scottish Government, explores the challenges faced by low-income renters and what people living on a low income want to see from further reform to the PRS in Scotland. Our research involves a literature review, a survey of private renters, interviews and focus groups with low-income renters, and co-production workshops with renters and stakeholders to co-produce workable solutions to the challenges identified. This paper provides emergent findings of this project.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 5 Apr 2022
EventHousing Studies Association Annual Conference 2022 - Sheffield, United Kingdom
Duration: 4 Apr 20226 Apr 2022


ConferenceHousing Studies Association Annual Conference 2022
Abbreviated titleHSA 2022
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom


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