The 2022 Queen’s Speech, delivered on May 10th by Prince Charles, included the Renters’ Reform Bill, which sets out to create a ‘fair and effective market’ for both tenants and landlords.
The Bill introduced new legislation that will abolish ‘no fault’ Section 21 evictions, and at the same time strengthen landlords’ rights of possession where warranted.
As things currently stand, what’s known as a Section 8 notice can be issued if a landlord already has a reason to evict a tenant – such as rent arrears, damage to the property or complaints from neighbours.
A 21 ‘no-fault’ eviction notice, on the other hand, currently means that a landlord does not need to give a reason for ending a tenancy.
But in line with the new Renters’ Bill, landlords will now need to give a valid reason to evict a tenant. And in disputes between private landlords and tenants, an ombudsman will be introduced to resolve any issues without the need to go to court.
Then again, where there are repeated incidences of rent arrears, The Bill does introduce stronger possession grounds and reduces notice periods when there is antisocial behaviour to strengthen landlords’ rights of possession.
In the case of Section 21 ‘no fault’ notices, tenants currently have just two months to move out, and landlords must apply to a court after this notice period ends to start the eviction process. This means the total time for the court process can take anywhere between a few weeks to several months.
The Government had initially intended to end Section 21 notices in April 2019.
Instead, the eviction notice period was extended from two to three months. This was later extended to September 2020 when landlords had to give tenants six months notice.
From October 2021, notice periods were reduced back to two months. And the ‘no fault’ evictions ban, expected in Autumn of last year, was pushed back to spring 2022.
Finally, in February 2022, The Government published its Levelling Up White Paper. In this it recommitted to scrapping Section 21 notices and bringing forward the Renters’ Reform Bill.
What will be in the Renters’ Reform Bill?
Besides abolishing Section 21 notices, The Bill is expected to include sweeping reforms to the private rented sector and a national register of landlords. While the reforms and scrapping of Section 21 notices were mentioned in The Queen’s Speech today, a national register of landlords wasn’t.
The Government is expected to produce its proposals for future legislation for the Renters’ Reform Bill in a White Paper later this year.
Whether you’re looking to rent out a property or rent yourself, get in touch with the experts at Louis Taylor who will be able to support and advise on how to navigate the rental market. Get in touch on firstname.lastname@example.org or give the team a call on 01782 622 677.