The government-backed organisation that is managing the roll-out of Unique Property Reference Numbers (UPRNs) has revealed how the initiative will impact landlords and rented property.

GeoSpace, which is a joint venture between government and industry, was created in 2011 to digitise the built environment and help both local and national governments put together a unique list of every address in the UK.

After many years of work UPRNs are emerging from the realm of local authorities, which use them internally, into the wider world including the private rental market.

But landlords should understand that this will make their activities, and their properties, much more transparent to both tax, regulatory and licensing authorities.

Property MOT

This is the conclusion of Geoplace chief Nick Chapallaz (pictured, above), whose organisation is backing the efforts of The Lettings Industry Council to create an MOT-style record for every property within the PRS.

“One element of this is to check whether a property has a valid energy performance certificate (EPC), and the identifier can be linked to this and to gas and electricity meters as part of the validation,” he says.

“It also enables local authorities to cross-reference needs for social services with rental properties, to identify landlords who are avoiding their responsibilities for essential repairs, and helps HM Treasury identify those who are not registered for tax.”

But while some rogue operators will not welcome this kind of digital snooping, it will help drive huge improvement to the lettings process for estate agents and compliant landlords.

tllic uprns

Theresa Wallace (pictured), chair of TLIC, says UPRNs will bring down costs by making property management much easier by connecting a host of services to a property via one number.

This will include EPC providers, gas engineers, electrical contractors, CRM systems, deposit protection providers and ombudsman schemes.

What is a UPRN?

It’s a unique 12-digit number that is unique to every address in the UK. For example, No.10 Downing Street is UPRN 100023336956.


  1. This is a great idea. But you have to be able to be able to manage the tenant in fair terms. So we cant currently evict a tenant for 6 months. Tenants don’t pay and thus no impact to the tenant and the landlords looses income. legislation is all one sided so it doesnt matter how the government tries to sell this, tenants will see extensive rental rises. We must increase costs to tenants due to legislation and taxes.

  2. Another unique identifier is the property’s Title Number at HM Land Registry. This UPRN register is a complete and utter waste of tax payers money.

  3. Exactly Vicki, wtf is a postcode for!

    This is, again, nothing but more damming red tape thrust onto a sector that’s buckling under all recent tax and much unneeded regulations!

    It is little wonder many are jumping ship, same for us come the new year, so, it’s sadly by by to our fab Tenant and family, who have been impeccable since signing contracts, but we honestly cannot be bothered with all this unnecessary p00p and for little return!

  4. I have heard property owners tell me that they never paid CGT when selling their rentals, because no-one ever asked them for it! CGT seemed to be a voluntary tax for many. We could easily re-coop the missing tax by matching the council tax records (which identify rented property) with land registry, …but we need Land Registry to be digitally searchable. We still can’t search property ownership by name.
    Property has been a great place to hide for tax dodgers. Anything that improves compliance is a good idea.

  5. HI CW
    How do council tax records identify if a property is rented or not?
    My tenants pay their own council tax, so without cross referencing the property/residents with a third party i.e. Land Registry how would the council know?

  6. Agree with all the comments above – re-inventing the wheel at taxpayers costs, no doubt the quango in charge will have a link of some-kind to a government minister. “Yes Prime Minister”

  7. The only result of this will be that all the fraudulent tenancies out there will have to be ended.
    That means all Accidental LL who won’t have EPC on their RESIDENTIAL properties.

    Nor will they have CTL
    Nor will they have the correct insurance.

    Mass homelessness will occur for tenants.
    Accidental LL alone house about 1.5 million tenants.

    Very few of these illegal rental properties will have the latest electrical checks carried out.

    All these requirements will just force illegal LL out of business.
    There is nobody to replace them so where will the tenants live!?


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