Update on Residential and Commercial Tenancies
Residential Tenancies - England
Notice periods for possession in England returned to pre-pandemic lengths from 01 October 2021. These rules currently don’t apply in Wales. Wales has separate legislation details of which are set out below.
From the 01 October 2021 in England, the following notice periods will apply:
1. Section 21 Notice - 2 months
2. Section 8 Notice on the following grounds:
- 1, 2, 5, 6, 7, 9 or 16 – 2 months;
- 8, 10 and 11 – 2 weeks;
- 3, 4, 7b, 12, 13, 14A, 15 or 17 – 2 weeks;
- 7a – 1 month; and
- 14 – Immediately after the notice is served.
New Section 8 and Section 21 notices for use in England will be available from the 01 October 2021. The new notices must be used from the 01 October 2021.
Due to the upcoming changes, landlords in England should consider waiting until the 01 October 2021 before serving a possession notice or reissuing a new notice from the 01 October 2021.
The legislation which extended the notice periods is being suspended and the Government retains the power to extend the notice periods again (until 25 March 2022) if the pandemic worsens.
Residential Tenancies - Wales
Wales are extending the use of the current notice periods (which were lengthened due to the pandemic) until 31 December 2021. For most possession claims, landlords in Wales will need to give tenants six months' notice before evicting tenants from a property using a Section 21 notice and for most grounds relied upon under a Section 8 claim.
A shorter notice period is permitted for some grounds under a Section 8 claim relating to anti-social behaviour or domestic violence, which are:
- Ground 7A (1 month notice);
- Ground 14 (immediately after serving a section 8 notice); and
- Ground 14A (at least 2 weeks).
The property portfolio will be updated for these changes so that the relevant templates will be available for download from the 01 October 2021.
The Corporate Insolvency and Governance Act 2020 temporarily restricts a landlords’ ability to serve statutory demands and issue winding-up petitions as a means of recovering rent arrears which relate to the pandemic. Although this restriction is due to be lifted at the end of this month, the Government has passed new legislation which restricts a petition being issued if the debt relates to rent or other sum payable by a tenant under a business lease (among other conditions) until 31 March 2022. This temporary measure will assist companies who owe rent arrears and follows the timeline for the moratorium on forfeiture proceedings which is in place until the 25 March 2022 in both England and Wales.
The contents of this Newsletter are for reference purposes only and do not constitute legal advice. Independent legal advice should be sought in relation to any specific legal matter.