Tactical Approach to Notices

23 August 2021

 

Landlords must ensure they give the correct amount of notice when seeking possession of a private residential property.

The notice periods are set out in sections 8 and 21 of the Housing Act 1988 and depend on the circumstances in which possession is being sought.

However, between 26/03/2020 to 30/09/2021, the notice periods have been amended due to the coronavirus pandemic. They are currently:

Immediate expiry

Section 8, Ground 14 – discretionary ASB.

Two weeks’ expiry

Section 8, Ground 7B – immigration status.

Section 8, Ground 14ZA – offence during a riot.

Section 8, Ground 17 – false statement.

Four weeks’ expiry

Section 8, Ground 7A – mandatory ASB.

Section 8, Ground 8 – mandatory rent arrears (where over 4 months’ accumulated rent arrears are owing).

Section 8, Ground 10 – discretionary rent arrears (where over 4 months’ accumulated rent arrears are owing).

Section 8, Ground 11 – persistent delays in paying rent (where over 4 months’ accumulated rent arrears are owing).

Two months’ expiry

Section 8, Ground 7 – successor not entitled.

Section 8, Ground 8 – mandatory rent arrears (where less than 4 months’ – but more than 2 months’ – accumulated rent arrears are owing).

Section 8, Ground 10 – discretionary rent arrears (where less than 4 months’ accumulated rent arrears are owing).

Section 8, Ground 11 – persistent delays in paying rent (where less than 4 months’ accumulated rent arrears are owing).

Four months’ expiry

Section 21

Section 8, Ground 1 – landlord to live in the property.

Section 8, Ground 2 – mortgage arrears.

Section 8, Ground 3 – holiday lets.

Section 8, Ground 4 – educational let.

Section 8, Ground 6 – substantial works to the property.

Section 8, Ground 9 – suitable alternative accommodation.

Section 8, Ground 12 – breach of tenancy.

Section 8, Ground 13 – property deterioration.

Section 8, Ground 15 – condition of furniture.

Section 8, Ground 16 – employment by landlord terminated.

It is anticipated that notice periods will revert to their pre-pandemic levels on 01/10/2021. Therefore, tactically you may wish to hold-off serving notice in some circumstances, such as:

*A section 21 notice served on 23/08/2021 will expire on 23/12/2021, whereas if it is served on 01/10/2021, it will expire on 01/12/2021.

*A section 8 notice served on 23/08/2021 based on arrears of rent of less than four months’ rent will expire on 23/10/2021, whereas if it is served on 01/10/2021, it will expire on 15/10/2021.

Finally, when serving notice:

*Make sure the correct amount of notice is given, allowing time for service; and

*Always use the current form 6A (section 21) or 3 (section 8) and fill it in completely and correctly.

 

For specific advice on the best route to obtain possession, get in touch with Rebecca Chadwick for some free and friendly initial advice:

01704 790 532 – [email protected]