The latest version of the How to Rent Guide was released on 2nd October 2023, and it includes some important information for both landlords and tenants.
In fact, landlords are required to serve the latest version of the guide to their tenant. If they don’t do so, evictions can be extremely difficult.
In his latest article, Jason Grimster outlines what the new How to Rent Guide includes and what it means for you.
What is the How to Rent Guide?
The How to Rent Guide is essentially a checklist which sets out everything a tenant needs to know before they move into their rented home.
It includes the rights and duties of a tenant, such as to pay rent, as well as the legal responsibilities of the landlord.
If you’re a landlord and want to ‘brush up’ on your responsibilities, you can do so here.
What does the latest version of the How to Rent Guide include?
This new version of the How to Rent Guide introduces important changes for tenants at risk of losing their home.
The new Housing Loss Prevention Advice Service (HLPAS) is introduced, replacing the existing Housing Possession Court Duty Scheme (HPCDS).
The HPCDS was available at court only on the day of a hearing, but the new HLPAS is to be made available to tenants facing eviction and is available free of charge via legal aid services and support.
Do I need to provide a How to Rent Guide?
Yes, as a landlord you are required to issue new or renewing tenants with a copy of the How to Rent Guide, including when a tenancy ‘rolls over’ into a statutory tenancy.
This should be done before a new tenant moves in or before an existing tenant renews their tenancy.
Read how to prepare for a new tenant here.
What if I don’t provide a How to Rent Guide?
Failure to provide the latest version of the How to Rent Guide before a tenant moves in or renews their tenancy can have serious consequences for you as the landlord.
If your tenant doesn’t receive a copy, a Section 21 notice, which landlords use to repossess their property without providing a reason, will not be valid.
So, it’s important that you ensure your tenant receives a copy of this guide promptly!
Section 21 evictions are actually set to be abolished as part of the Renter’s Reform Act, which is set to come into force in the near future. Find out more here.
Or, read out guide to evicting a tenant here.
Where do I find the How to Rent Guide?
You can find and download your own copy of the How to Rent Guide on the GOV.UK website here.
What the How to Rent Guide means going forwards
Jason Grimster says: “It is vital that landlords are providing any new tenants or renewed tenancies with a copy of the most up to date How to Rent Guide.
Not doing so could have a detrimental effect on being able to get your property back later down the line.
It may be that they begin to introduce more regularly renewed How to Rent Guides so keeping on top of the current legislation in this area is crucial for landlords.”
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Specialist Landlord & Tenant Solicitors
If you feel that you would benefit from advice on any Landlord & Tenant issues, including evictions, please feel free to contact our bright team.
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