No one should be denied a safe home because of who they are. Stand with us in the fight against discrimination by signing our pledge today. 


No one should be denied a safe home because of who they are. Stand with us in the fight against discrimination by signing our pledge today. 

It is unlawful to discriminate against anyone looking to rent in Wales. Despite this, over 75,000 people across Wales reported discrimination when trying to find their current home.

More than one in three landlords do not – or would prefer not to – let to people who are entitled to benefits.

Sian was discriminated against when trying to find a home for her and Iolo, her four month old baby.  Her long term relationship with Iolo’s father broke down and they had to sell the house that they’d bought together a few years previously. She was in urgent need of a home as she waited for the property to be sold.

When Sian approached her local council she was told that she wasn’t in priority need, that she couldn’t access support from the homeless department until the final stages of the property sale and there would be a long wait for a social home for her and Iolo. She approached Shelter Cymru for assistance who contacted the local authority on their behalf and managed to get placed higher on the social housing waiting list. Unfortunately this was too late for Sian as she’d already missed out on a property in the area due to the fact that the council had made a mistake with her banding.

At the same time that she approached the council for help with her housing situation, she also applied to a local landlord for a two bedroom property. The rent on the property was £511 a month, which was well within Sian’s budget. Sian was on a part time salary topped up with Universal Credit housing allowance and had no debts. Despite that, she was still declined a home due to the fact that a small share of her income came from benefits.

Sian then had to look for a home through local letting agents and finally managed to secure a home for her and her young baby at a cost of £650 a month – a hefty monthly sum for a single mother who works part-time. But the journey of trying to access a home via a letting agent was also a difficult one as most agents required 6 months’ rent in advance which ruled out almost anyone in receipt of benefits. Fortunately, she found a home for her and Iolo in the end but only because her dad was able to act as a guarantor for her, which was reliant on him earning in excess of £20,000 a year.

Sian said:

‘It was nine months of hell. The sale of the house went through after four months and for the next five months I had to return to live with my parents. It was such a traumatic time and I felt that I faced obstacles at every turn. The stress and the sense of injustice was overwhelming at times. All I wanted was a secure home for myself and Iolo, who had health issues due to the fact that he was born prematurely. I’m a working single mother who wants to provide a good home for my son to be able to thrive in, but the discrimination against people like myself who are in receipt of benefits is so unfair.

We missed out on a perfect, affordable home because of this and I’ve now ended up paying £140 a month more in a private rent. If it wasn’t for my parents who were in a position to act as guarantors, I would still be homeless now and I dread to think of the consequences for me and Iolo. This discrimination against people on benefits needs to end because if it wasn’t for my father, Iolo and I would be homeless and I feel for others in the same situation as myself who haven’t got that financial back-up.’

We know that it is a devastating experience to have found a place to call home, only to be turned down from renting or even viewing that home because of your gender, sexuality, ethnicity or disability.

Things don’t have to be this way. Sign our pledge and say no one should be denied the right to a safe home because of discrimination. It’s time to put an end to this unlawful practice.

Add your name today to join the fight against discrimination in Welsh housing.


Not enough people know that tenants in Wales have extra protections.

We’re working with Rent Smart Wales to report the experiences of people who’ve been discriminated against when looking for a home, so they can take action against rogue landlords.

If you’ve been discriminated against, please share your experience.



If you have experienced a ‘no DSS’ policy, you have probably been discriminated against. Use this Toolkit to work out what you can do.