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Volume 202: debated on Tuesday 21 January 1992

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To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what information he has on the extent to which private landlords reduce the rent charged to their tenants after a rent officer has assessed a market rent for housing benefit subsidy purposes which is substantially lower than the initial rent charged.

We have no evidence as to whether the rents asked by private sector landlords reflect the assessments of market rents provided by rent officers to local authorities for housing benefit purposes. Rent officers interpret the rental market, which is influenced by many factors.