Landlords could owe tenants thousands as Martin Lewis puts renters on high alert

Landlords across the UK could owe tenants thousands in back rent if they haven't complied with certain regulations, according to Martin Lewis.

According to the personal finance guru, those living in London and Scotland could be particularly affected. They have been urged to check if their property is compliant to licencing rules.

Speaking on his podcast, Lewis revealed listeners can go to london.gov.uk to find the property licence checker and check if their landlord has all the required licences for the type of property they're renting out. If not, the Money Saving Expert advised: "If the landlord hasn't followed the rules of licencing, you could be owed thousands of pounds of back rent."

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The finance expert dropped the bombshell on his Not the Martin Lewis podcast as he discussed a variety of renting questions with a panel of experts, one of which, Ben Leonard from ACORN, had a personal experience with this exact situation.

He recalled staying in a house share a few years ago, revealing: "I actually took my landlord to court because I was living in an unlicensed HMO. My landlord didn't have a licence so we got 80 per cent of our rent back."

Ben explained that the HMO-specific licencing is an extra set that landlords need to ensure they have met "minimum standards" for the number of occupants in their property. Homes of multiple occupants usually have three or more residents in areas like London while others can have six or more.

Ben advised it "differs from council to council" so it's worth checking specific regulations in your area. He also highlighted: "It's not just about making your rent back and getting a nice payday. It's also about making sure the home you live in is safe to live in."