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Tenant Farming Commissioner publishes updated guidance on rent reviews

Scotland’s Tenant Farming Commissioner (TFC), Bob McIntosh, has today published updated guidance on negotiating and conducting rent reviews.

This updated guidance builds on the 2015 guide published jointly with NFUS, STFA and SLE which is aimed at ‘91 Act Tenancies. The new guide clarifies some aspects of the processes currently used to review rent in particular those relating to the provision of evidence and the use of the inflation linked sense check.

Bob McIntosh said:

“There is clear agreement that long periods between rent reviews can have a detrimental impact on farm business. Parties are encouraged to meet when a rent review is due, even where there is no variation sought in rent payable.

“Rent determination is not an exact science. Arriving at the rent sum is a process that requires agreement based on discussion and analysis of evidence provided by both sides. The updated guidance offers information on making and responding to rent proposals, including the need to provide evidence in the case of a rent proposal and any counter proposal made.”

The guide emphasises the importance of avoiding surprises and encourages a preliminary conversation on the holding in advance of the rent proposal. It also sets out clear guidance on the use of comparable rents in recent case law and emphasises the need for well researched data to be presented to inform any new rent proposal.