In this article:
- Tenants have a right to know the landlord’s name and address.
- Under the law, you can request these contacts from the letting agent or relevant person managing the property.
- When you make a written request, that person has 21 days to provide you with the name and address of the landlord.
- The landlord’s address can be their home, their office or another property they occupy.
- You can find your landlord’s contacts in the official tenancy documents, like the tenancy agreement, gas safety certificate, etc.
- Additionally, you can search for your landlord in the local council and land registry.
Tenants have a right, by law, to know the name and address of their landlord. The address can be that of the landlord’s agent, such as a solicitor, accountant or managing agent. Where the landlord lives abroad then there must be an address for an agent in England and Wales. This information should be clearly outlined in your tenancy agreement.
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You have legal right to your landlord’s name and address
Section 48 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1987 states that rent is not lawfully due unless the tenant has been given, in writing, an address in England and Wales at which notices can be served.
Note: If you decide to withhold rent as per the above regulation, do NOT spend it. All rent will become due when the information is served.
Some landlords prefer to remain anonymous, however, when a tenant makes a written request to the letting agent or the landlord’s representative, they have a right to the landlord’s name and address.
Under Section 1 of the Landlord & Tenant Act 1985 tenants have a right to request the name and address of their landlord.
If this information is not provided after 21 days then the representative is not acting within the law and is liable to pay a fine. Be aware that you are only entitled to the landlord’s name and address; the legislation does not include access to a telephone number or email address.
Bear in mind that the address provided is not required to be the landlord’s residential address. It can be any building, house or office that the landlord occupies for any reason. If they have another option, landlord will often choose not to give you their home address to protect their own privacy.
What the law means
Tenants have every right to contact their landlord in such cases as:
- To request repairs
- To help mediate with a letting agent
- In case of an emergency
In the event of an emergency where you need to get hold of your landlord quickly but cannot do so, go to the GOV.UK website. From there you should acquire the contact details of your local authority which will be able to deal with the emergency and then take steps to find out who your landlord is. If you take this option your landlord will be charged for any repairs that have to be carried out as a result of the emergency.
How to find your landlord’s contact details
There are other ways you can find out your landlord’s name and address such as those listed below. You may find a refusal to give you information because of the Data Protection Act 1988, however, section 35 makes an exemption where the information is needed in relation to legal proceedings.
Quoting the following extract may get you the information you need, “Personal data are exempt from the non-disclosure provisions where the disclosure is required by or under any enactment, by any rule of law or by the order of a court.”
- Prescribed information – this information will be issued by your deposit protection scheme, when your landlord registers and protects your deposit. It will list information about the property, the landlord, their contacts and the deposit protection scheme, who registered your deposit.
- Gas Safety Certificate – every property must have a valid certificate issued by a Gas Safe registered plumber. The certificate has to list relevant contact information for the landlord and letting agents. The plumber on the certificate should also have the contact details of your landlord.
- Standing order – if you pay your rent directly into your landlord’s account then the bank will have the contact details on record.
- Gas, Electricity and Water supply – the landlord will have to pay these bills when the property is empty so you may be able to get the details via the supplier.
- Your local authority – the council tax department will have your landlord’s details on their records for when the property is vacant.
- The Land Registry – it will show you who owns the land below your property. The person who owns the land may or may not be your landlord. If not, they will likely know who the landlord is.
When you cannot find your landlord
Sometimes, as far as you may try, your landlord can remain out of reach. If an agent or another representative is acting on their behalf, you might be able to regard them legally as your landlord.
If the agent’s name and address is on the tenancy agreement, and they are acting to protect the landlord’s identity, then as far as tenants are concerned the agent is the landlord. What this means is you can go to court and file a claim against your agent as if they are your actual landlord.
Speak to a CAB advisor also if you do not get a response from your written request to the letting agent or your landlord’s representative.
Your local Housing Office can issue your landlord with a fine for withholding information, so do get in touch if you feel this is the case and wish to pursue the matter. Do be aware that some landlords may try to evict you as a result; this is known as revenge or retaliatory eviction.
This article is provided as a guide. Any information should be used for research purposes and not as the base for taking legal action. The Tenants' Voice does not provide legal advice and our content does not constitute a client-solicitor relationship.
We advise all tenants to act respectfully with their landlords and letting agents and seek a peaceful resolution to problems with their rented property. For more information, explore the articles in our Rights and responsibilities category.
If you experience problems with your tenancy deposit, have disrepair in your rented property or suspect that your landlord should have a licence to rent your property but does not have one then you can receive a free consultation by calling our advice service: Call Tenant Assist on 0333 344 3788.
For more ways to reach us, please visit our contacts page.