URGENT UPDATE FOR LANDLORDS OF RESIDENTIAL PROPERTY
Reduction in Notice Periods
Since 1 September 2020, after a blanket ban on progressing possession proceedings came to an end, landlords in England have been required to give most tenants at least six months’ notice if they intend to evict them.
However, following announcements made by the Ministry of Housing and various delays and pushbacks over recent months, that period as at 1 June 2021 has been reduced to four months. Whilst the notice periods are not back what they were pre-COVID, this is at least a welcome reprieve and step in the right direction for landlords whom wish to seek possession of their property promptly.
It is also worth noting that where a landlord is seeking possession on the grounds of serious arrears (now defined as at least four months’ worth of arrears) the relevant notice period is reduced to four weeks. Prior to 1 June 2021, landlords only could serve a Section 8 Notice with a four-week notice period where the arrears stood at 6 months’ worth or more.
Currently, subject to public health advice, the government anticipates that notice periods will return to pre-pandemic levels from 01 October 2021, which will again simplify and streamline possession proceedings.
In further positive news for landlords, the ban upon bailiff enforced evictions has also been lifted as of 1 June 2021.
For the duration of the pandemic, in most circumstances, it has not been possible to enforce an Order for Possession via a bailiff’s attendance at the property.
However, from 1 June 2021 bailiff’s can once again attend properties and execute a warrant or writ of possession. This should remove the possibility of the situation that has been seen where a landlord is granted an Order of Possession by the Court but finds that they have no power to enforce it, in practice.
Before the warrant or writ of possession is undertaken, the tenant is still entitled to be granted not less than 14 days’ notice of the bailiff’s appointment such notice of eviction is to be delivered to the premises.
BTMK has a specialist landlord and tenant team, to advise and assist Landlords to recover possession of property, unpaid rent and to enforce any breaches of tenancy agreements. We will advise you, in most cases, using our fixed fee model which has successfully been operating for many years.
If you have any queries, you can contact Louise Mickleburgh (Rayleigh office) at firstname.lastname@example.org or Gabriella Shepherd (Southend-on-Sea office) at email@example.com or by live chat via our website at www.btmk.co.uk. Our telephone lines are also available 24/7 (03300 585 222).