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Moving into a new London flat or student housing can be really exciting, but it can also be stressful if you find yourself experiencing difficulties with your landlord, roommates, neighbours, or the flat itself. We’ve put together some important things to keep in mind and actions you can take if you find yourself dealing with housing problems. 



It’s important to remember that both you as a tenant and your landlord have certain rights and responsibilities. Dealing with landlord issues can be challenging, but there are some steps you can take to protect yourself and address any problems you have constructively.

  • Understand your rights: Familiarise yourself with the terms of your tenancy agreement, conditions under which your deposit can be withheld, eviction laws, and the rights you have as a tenant in London.

  • Document everything: Keep detailed records of your communication with your landlord and take photos where relevant. This documentation can serve as evidence in case of a dispute

  • Report issues promptly and in writing: If you encounter problems with your property, report them to your landlord as soon as possible. It’s best to make these requests in writing (ex; via email) to ensure you have evidence of your request. 

  • Maintain open communication: It is always recommended to try sorting out issues with your landlord directly where possible. Having an open dialogue can help prevent misunderstandings and avoid further escalation.

  • Follow repair procedures: If your landlord is unresponsive to a repair request, check whether there is a procedure outlined in your tenancy agreement. You can also contact Citizens Advice if you need help getting necessary repairs done or pursuing a complaint with the local Council.

  • Know when you involve the authorities: If you’re facing serious risks to your health, experiencing harassment or discrimination, or feel you’re living in an unsafe environment you should contact your local Council for help.

It’s usually best to approach your landlord in a respectful manner when trying to resolve issues you’re having. If in doubt, you can seek legal housing advice from University of London Housing Services or Citizens Advice.



Successful roommate relationships require communication and mutual understanding. However, it’s not uncommon to experience conflicts with the people you’re living with. Here are some tips you help you deal with roommate issues:

  • Communicate openly and listen actively: It is important to respectfully communicate with your roommate about any issues you have, while also giving your roommate the chance to share their perspective. 

  • Set clear boundaries: Establish boundaries and expectations for shared spaces, chores, guests, noise levels, and so on. It may also be helpful to create a written agreement that outlines these expectations. This can serve as a reference point in case of disputes.

    • You might also consider having regular house meetings where you sort out bills, admin and other issues. 

  • Address issues early: Don’t let problems fester - have a conversation with your roommate(s) early on when problems arise to avoid things escalating into bigger conflicts. Just remember to keep things neutral and polite.

  • Seek mediation if possible: Check your tenancy agreement to see if your landlord can arbitrate. If you’re living in halls of residence, seek out the caretaker or welfare representative.

  • Know your liabilities: If a roommate moves out unexpectedly, you may be jointly liable for any breaches of the contract, including damage to the property or rent arrears. Speak to your landlord, and if possible the absent flatmate, to discuss any unpaid amounts owed.

    • If you’re looking to replace a flatmate that has moved out, speak to your landlord first about the terms of your tenancy.



There’s nothing worse than finding what you think is the ideal place, moving in and then realising on your first night that it is impossible to sleep due to noise. If this has been caused by your neighbours, you will often be able to resolve problems just by talking to them. Often people don't know they are causing a problem and most will be glad to take action to reduce the disturbance.

If this doesn’t work or if you feel uncomfortable doing the above, then discuss the problem with your landlord. Most tenancy conditions include a requirement that tenants do not cause a disturbance to neighbours. Your landlord may take action if a serious disturbance is happening.

Noise can also be caused by other things such as construction work happening in the area. Unfortunately this is something we have to live with to an extent, but it is also important to know the law around this. 

  • Construction noise is considered to be a nuisance outside of these hours: Monday to Friday 8am to 6pm, Saturdays 9am to 2pm.

    • Sundays and Bank Holidays should see no work. 

If you are experiencing construction noise outside of these times then tell your landlord who has an obligation to deal with this.



It is important to remember that both landlord and tenant have responsibilities for repairs and the overall safety of the property. Make sure to tell your landlord about any repairs/health & safety changes that are needed. Below are the steps to take if your landlord hasn’t yet responded to your notice of disrepair:

  • Take pictures of the repair needed. This could prove useful down the line if things escalate.

  • Put the repair request in writing. The Shelter website has an excellent template for this. In the letter, ensure to give the landlord a reasonable timeframe to complete the repairs. Send the request to your landlord via email and post.

    • The landlord should be given around 28 days to fix minor repairs, so be patient if it is not a major issue.

  • If the landlord continues to ignore the request, send a further letter, this time detailing the landlord's obligations under section 11 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985 and/or the tenancy agreement and asking for immediate action. Again, the Shelter website has a good template for this.

  • If this further request is ignored, you will need to seek legal advice. The University of London Housing Service is the place to go for LSE students to get free legal housing advice.


There are numerous services that can help if your individual efforts do not work with all of the above:

  • Shelter: Shelter is a UK based housing charity and its website should be your first stop to read up on your rights as a tenant. 

  • University of London Housing Service: University of London Housing Services offers a range of services to assist and support students who are living in private accommodation in London. They have a specialist legal advice team that can advise you should your issue be of a more serious nature.

  • Citizens Advice: Every London borough has at least one Citizens Advice Bureau which provides free advice and guidance to residents. 

  • Local Borough Councils: Local councils can support private renters in their respective borough.

  • The LSESU Advice Service: Our Advice Service provides free advice and support to LSE students on a range of housing issues from dealing with landlords to checking contracts.


This blog was written by Hannah Thomsen. 

Hannah is an Advice Assistant at the LSESU Advice Service. 



The LSESU Advice Team is based on the 3rd floor of the Saw Swee Hock Building and we provide free, independent and confidential advice to all LSE students on academic and housing matters. We also administer the Hardship Fund, the Childcare Fund and the Graduation Gown Support Fund (GGSF).

Our service is currently operating using a hybrid working pattern. We are still open and can be accessed by emailing You can also book a Zoom or in person appointment with an adviser via email.