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Section 21 No Fault Notices & Possession

by Raminder Uberoi — Posted on 5 April, 2018

Landlords can serve a Section 21 Notice of Possession when trying to regain possession of a let property on an Assured Shorthold Tenancy. It’s important that both landlords and tenants are aware of recent legislative changes affecting their operation. 

It is important to be aware of changes to the law on Section 21 and, in particular, how landlords deal with reported repair issues is now of crucial importance if Section 21 claims for possession are to be successful. The Section 21 eviction process for Assured Shorthold Tenancies (ASTs) in England and Wales is a very valuable concession for landlords, which not all jurisdictions give: it allows for no-fault eviction of tenants.      

Understanding the Section 21 Notice of Seeking Possession  

New legislation means that landlords and agents must fulfil some specific requirements if their section 21 eviction is to be successful.  For any tenancy commencing on or after 1 October 2015:  
  • Tenants must be issued with a valid EPC; 
  • Tenants must be issued with a current Gas Safety Certificate – if gas is present; 
  • Tenants must be provided with the version of the government’s “How to Rent Guide”, current at the time of the commencement of the tenancy; 
  • Service within 30 days of the deposit being received, along with the scheme’s Statutory Notice and their information leaflet. The notice must refer to a clause in the tenancy agreement which explains the circumstance in which money can be deducted – usually damage, service charges and arrears of rent.  
These documents must be provided at the time of the commencement of the tenancy, or in the case of the How to Rent Guide, at the very least, before a section 21 notice is served.   It is important to be clear with your tenants how formal communications can be made. For example, sending documents as attachments to emails is agreed.  Service of notices should always be done in person or posted through the address letter box and independently witnessed. In each case the tenancy agreement should state how communications can be made. You always need documentary evidence that documents have been sent or served on tenants.  

Section 21 Notice Changes 

 For any AST starting on or after 1st October 2015, a new form of section 21 notice is required and will not be valid if served during the first four months of an AST, and the notice will expire if court proceedings are not started within 6 months of service.  

Landlords Guide to Section 21 Evictions 

We have created a comprehensive guide for landlords, covering all aspects of section 21 eviction processes and how to go forward with these appropriately. You can download this document in PDF form by clicking here.   

How Starck Uberoi can help  

Starck Uberoi have a dedicated team of solicitors that specialise in Landlord and Tenant law. We have assisted with over hundreds of landlords in their tenancy disputes. We suggest reading our Section 21 Evictions page for more information. For further advice on our express 7-day tenancy eviction service, please call or email our estate planning team at solicitor@starckuberoi.co.uk. To make an appointment at our West London Ealing office located 10 minutes from Ealing Broadway station call 020 8840 6640. For an appointment at our London Belgravia office a few minutes from Victoria Station call 020 7824 5118.  

 

About Raminder Uberoi

Raminder is head of the property department and his practice includes acquisitions, sales, financing, planning, development, landlord and tenant matters and corporate-related property transactions. He specialises in all aspects of commercial and residential property continually developing successful and practical client-focussed strategies. He draws on his wide experience to achieve tailor-made solutions for his clients’ commercial and financial needs.