The government has announced changes to tenancy notice periods in line with the phased easing of the pandemic restrictions.
Whilst some notice periods are reducing, there are no plans to see them back to pre-pandemic levels until October.
From June 1 notice periods in England that are currently six months, will reduce to at least four months.
Notice periods for the most serious cases will remain lower:
– anti-social behaviour (immediate to 4 weeks’ notice);
– domestic abuse in the social sector (2 to 4 weeks’ notice);
– false statement (2 to 4 weeks’ notice);
– over 4 months’ accumulated rent arrears (4 weeks’ notice);
– breach of immigration rules ‘Right to Rent’ (2 weeks’ notice);
– death of a tenant (2 months’ notice)
Notice periods for cases where there is four or more months’ of unpaid rent, will reduce to two months’ notice from 1 August.
This is to support both landlords and tenants and responds to the greater difference between COVID and pre COVID notice periods for rent arrears.
The current ban on bailiff-enforced evictions, introduced as an emergency measure during lockdown, will end on May 31.
Housing Minister Chris Pincher says: “Subject to the public health advice and progress with the Roadmap, notice periods will return to pre-pandemic levels from October 1.
“The measures will ensure renters continue to be protected with longer notice periods for the coming months, while allowing landlords to access justice – 45 per cent of private landlords own just one property and are highly vulnerable to rent arrears.”
Mark Hayward, Propertymark chief policy advisor says: “Whilst the reduced notice periods are still longer than pre-Covid, it is promising to see the government continuing to provide financial support to tenants in order to combat rent arrears, as well as providing clarity for the rental sector as we navigate the easing of restrictions.”
This post has originally been featured in Letting Agent Today.