Top five reasons tenants give for moving out

Avoid these common complaints to keep your tenants happy

Landlord advice

29 March 2017

Every landlord dreams of having good, long-term tenants and avoiding the hassle of constantly finding new people to move in. So how do you stop good tenants moving out?

We've surveyed one thousand private renters across Great Britain* to find out what makes them want to leave. If you can avoid these problems in your property, you might find that your tenants stick around for longer.

A quick note

Some of the main reasons tenants move out can't be controlled by landlords. For example, 27.4% of our respondents said they'd move on if their property didn't have enough space. Likewise, just over 18% would leave if the property didn't have a garden. In this article we're focussing on the areas that you can tackle. So, in reverse order...

5. Poor kitchen facilities

With 15-minute meals and bake offs all over our TV screens, it's clear that we live in a country that loves to cook. Perhaps that's why 13.4% of tenants move on if their kitchen isn't great. Make sure your property's kitchen is in a good state of repair and well-stocked with utensils.

4. Disrepair

A bad state of repair would be the final straw for just under 15% of tenants. Inspect your property frequently to make sure everything is in tip-top condition. If tenants ask for a repair to be made, deal with it as promptly as possible. If it's going to take a few weeks before anyone can look at it, let them know. Be clear with your communications and don't let the tenant feel like you're ignoring them.

3. Neighbours

About 17% of tenants would move if they didn't like their neighbours. This might sound like something that's out of your hands, but actually you can deal with it. The first thing to do is speak to the neighbours. They might not realise they're doing anything wrong. If they're renting too, the next step is to discuss the problem with their landlord. Statutory nuisances (such as dogs barking, loud music and big piles of rubbish) can be reported to the council. If all else fails, there are mediation services that can help your tenant come to an agreement with their neighbours.

2. Damp

Just under a fifth of tenants would move on if their property showed signs of damp. It's hard to blame them. Damp doesn't just smell unpleasant; it can also cause health issues like breathing problems and allergies. To keep damp at bay you need to find out where it's coming from. Water can seep in from blocked guttering, or it can be caused by poor ventilation. Make sure that your extractor fans are working and, if necessary, put a dehumidifier in the property.

1. Price

This is the main reason that tenants want to move, tied with not having enough space at 27.4%. As a landlord you do need to make a profit, but it's important to make sure your rental price is in line with other homes in the area. You can find average rental prices on most property websites (for example Rightmove, Zoopla and HouseSimple).

*AXA survey of 1000 tenants living in Great Britain, conducted in July 2016