Jargon Buster

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Term Definition
Harassment is a criminal offence under the Protection from Eviction Act 1977.

The term refers to acts by a landlord or agent likely to interfere with the peace or comfort of a tenant or involve the withdrawal or withholding of services reasonably required for occupation. Harassment can include the landlord continually visiting the property or contacting tenants
Higher Lending Charge
A charge on a mortgage when the Loan To Value ration is higher than they are prepared to accept at the standard rate. Typically the charge is applied to loans in excess of 90%. Loan to Value.
House Of Multiple Occupation
In England and Wales HMOs are defined under the Housing Act 2004 as:

  • entire houses or flats let to three or more tenants from two or more households who share a kitchen, bathroom or toilet
  • houses converted entirely into bedsits or other accommodation that is not self contained, let to three or more tenants who form two or more households and who share kitchen, bathroom or toilet facilities
  • converted houses containing one or more flats which are not wholly self contained, occupied by three or more tenants who form two or more households and who share facilities
  • buildings which have been converted entirely into self contained flats but the conversion did not meet the standards of the 1991
House Price Index
A House Prices Index measures the price of residential housing. In the UK there is no official HPI, instead various banks, building societies, property websites and the government maintain an Index. Below is a description of the mail indices:

  • Rightmove: compiled from asking prices of properties as they come on the market via Rightmove's member estate agents over the previous month. Not seasonally adjusted.
  • Halifax: based on mortgage approvals of loans agreed by Halifax Bank of Scotland over the previous month, seasonally adjusted.
  • Nationwide: based on mortgage approvals of loans agreed by Nationwide Building Society over the previous month, seasonally adjusted.
  • DCLG (Department of Communities and Local Government): measures prices at completion stage, not seasonally adjusted.
  • Land Registry: uses sales data collected on all residential housing transactions, whether for cash or with a mortgage and is the only index based on repeat sales. It includes figures at national, regional, county and London borough level.
Housing Association
Housing associations offer housing t local people - often to people on a low income or people who need extra support.
Housing Benefit
A means tested welfare benefit administered by the local authority providing eligible tenants assistance in meeting the cost of rent.

Helps tenants to pay their rent. All tenants, Council, Housing Association or private, are eligible to apply. How much help anyone receives depends on their income and other circumstances.
Housing Ombudsman
The Ombudsman can investigate complaints and other matters referred to them and make recommendations for action. They are independent of the people and organisations they investigate.

They are impartial. Tenants can refer matters to the Housing Ombudsman,