Home Property Government introduces new six month notice period until at least end of March

Government introduces new six month notice period until at least end of March

by Mark Fitt Political Journalist
24th Aug 20 11:30 am

Alongside the extension of the eviction ban for another four weeks, the government is requiring landlords to provide tenants with six months’ notice in all cases except those involving anti-social behaviour and domestic abuse perpetrators, until at least the end of March.

On Friday, the government confirmed that it is extending the ban on evictions until the 20 September, meaning in total no legal evictions will have taken place for six months.

When courts do resume eviction hearings the most serious cases will be prioritised, ensuring landlords are able to progress the most serious cases, such as those involving anti-social behaviour and other crimes, as well as where landlords have not received rent for over a year and would otherwise face unmanageable debts.

According to independent research, 87% of tenants have continued to pay full rent since the start of the pandemic, with a further 8% agreeing reduced fees with their landlords.

Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick said on Friday, “I know this year has been challenging and all of us are still living with the effects of Covid-19. That is why today I am announcing a further four week ban on evictions, meaning no renters will have been evicted for six months.

“I am also increasing protections for renters – six month notice periods must be given to tenants, supporting renters over winter.

“However, it is right that the most egregious cases, for example those involving anti-social behaviour or domestic abuse perpetrators, begin to be heard in court again; and so when courts reopen, landlords will once again be able to progress these priority cases.”

Ben Beadle, CEO of the National Residential Landlords Association (NRLA) said, “A blanket extension is unacceptable, especially so close to the deadline.

“An enormous amount of work as gone into finding a balance between supporting tenants who have been affected by the pandemic and preventing significant financial harm to landlords, in accordance with the Government’s promise. This announcement satisfies no-one.

“Landlords have been left powerless in exercising their legal right to deal with significant arrears unrelated to Covid-19, antisocial behaviour and extremely disruptive tenants who make life miserable for their neighbours and housemates.

“Private landlords cannot be expected to foot the bill for government failure. There must now be a plan to support households to pay their bills and to compensate landlords fully for their lost income.

“Only this will give both tenants and landlords security and reduce the risk of widespread tenancy failure.”

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