Unfriendly landlords and moving into dirty properties are the biggest grumbles of Britain’s 8.3 million renters.
Tenants are also worried about high energy bills in properties with a lack of insulation and old boilers.
Disgruntled tenants also claim less than a third of landlords carry out essential gas safety checks every year and nearly 60% of homes do not have smoke or fire alarms.
The figures come from a wide-ranging survey of tenants carried out by landlord insurer Axa.
Although 17% of tenants choose to rent because they like a flexible lifestyle, nearly two-thirds told researchers they want to buy a home but cannot afford to save for a deposit.
When asked how they choose a home to rent, the deciding factor was the size of rooms, followed by the rent and location.
Having a garden was important to 35% and a garage to 25%.
On moving in, 38% said their biggest complaint was cleaning up after the previous tenant, while 20% disliked peeling paintwork or brash colour schemes.
One in six tenants was put off renting a home by an unfriendly landlord.
Almost a fifth of tenants claimed their landlords failed to carry out routine maintenance, including:
- 60% of buy to let homes have no carbon monoxide alarm
- 60% of tenants said their landlords failed to arrange an annual gas inspection
- 58% of rented homes do not have a fire alarm
- 73% of rented homes lack security, such as window locks
Darrell Sansom, managing director of AXA Business Insurance, said: “It’s easy to present greedy landlords on the one side and resentful tenants on the other – that’s certainly been the stereotype. However, we’ve found that their attitude to their landlords is largely positive, indicating that the problems aren’t caused so much by a bad attitude on either side, but just poor awareness of who is responsible for what.
“Keeping an eye on your property must come first. We know that a third of landlords never visit their rental properties after a tenant moves in, and quarterly checks are only conducted by less than a fifth.
“Too many landlords are leaving themselves open to serious property risks and even prosecution by not maintaining adequate fire and gas safety measures. “