Landlords’ Current Rights under Section 21
Residential landlords can currently consider the option of serving what is known as a “No Fault”/Section 21 Eviction Notice on a tenant. The landlord needs to have correctly protected the deposit and provided the following information to the tenant :-
How to Rent Guide ; and
Energy Performance Certificate ; and
Gas Safety Certificate ; and
Prescribed Information in relation to the Tenancy Deposit Scheme.
A “No Fault”/Section 21 Notice cannot be served within the first 4 months of the tenancy and cannot expire within the fixed term period (unless there is a clause in the tenancy allowing this).
If the landlord does choose to take the route of serving a “No Fault”/Section 21 Notice, then the landlord does not need to give a reason for requiring possession of the property. The landlord may not be able to serve a “No Fault”/Section 21 Notice where there has been an allegation in relation to disrepair and dilapidations.
If the tenant has not vacated the property upon the expiry of the notice period set out in the “No Fault”/Section 21 Notice (which currently must be at least 2 months) then the landlord is able to seek a possession order from the court utilising what is known as the accelerated possession procedure.
Proposed Changes – Renters Reform Bill
There has been discussion around the abolishment of “No Fault”/Section 21 Notices for some time. The Renters Reform Bill which contains this proposed abolishment (as well as various other proposed changes to the current renters’ legislative framework) was finally introduced to Parliament on 17 May 2023. However, the Renters Reform Bill is not yet law and still needs to pass through both Houses of Parliament. It is expected that the bill will become law some time in 2024 (or possibly late this year).
In the meantime, residential landlords, subject to the provisos that we have set out above, are able to serve a “No Fault”/Section 21 notice should they wish to seek possession of the property and this is the route they choose.
What will Landlords be able to do after the Renters Reform Bill becomes law ?
Once the bill becomes law, it is proposed that residential landlords will no longer be able to serve a “No Fault”/Section 21 Notice. The landlord will need to rely on the grounds for possession permitted by Section 8 and serve a Section 8 Notice for possession. The Section 8 procedure is also available to landlords now as an alternative to Section 21. If the tenant has not vacated the property upon the expiry of the Section 8 Notice then the landlord can seek a possession order from the court utilising what is known as the standard possession procedure. There are currently 17 grounds for possession set out in Section 8. The Renters Reform Bill proposes the introduction of additional grounds including that the landlord wishes to sell their property or to allow the landlord or family members to move into the property.
If you are residential landlord and you require further information in relation to your options, please contact Anna Barnes (email@example.com or 0161 434 9991).