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Rental Reform White Paper – Key takeaways for Landlords & Tenants

Posted on: 22/06/2022

The Government have released their Rental Reform White Paper, which aims to reform the private rented sector, give tenants ‘a better deal’ and ‘level up’ the quality of housing in England.

The White Paper has some key takeaways for both Landlords & Tenants, which Property Litigation specialist Will Bartley has outlined in this article…

What does the Rental Reform White Paper include?

The White Paper sets out that:

Is Section 21 being abolished?

Yes. This latest White Paper has outlined that ‘no-fault’ Section 21 Evictions, where the landlord does not have to provide a reason for ending a tenancy, will be abolished.

For landlords, this means they’ll have to rely on Section 8 evictions going forward. There is hope that Section 8 grounds will be amended to make it easier for landlords to rely upon them, however it is unclear at this stage what changes will be made.

What are the grounds for a Section 8 notice?

A Section 8 notice can only be served when a tenant is in breach of the tenancy agreement.

Landlords will have to give a ‘concrete and evidenced reason’ to evict a tenant.

The most common grounds are:

  • Rent Arrears
  • Failure to pay rent
  • Property damage
  • Antisocial behaviour
  • Subletting

A full list of grounds can be found here.

What is the Decent Homes Standard?

The Decent Homes Standard sets out that a property must be a ‘safe and decent home’.
To be considered so, a property must meet the certain criteria along with the Home Fitness for Human Habitation Act:

  • It meets the statutory minimum standard for housing;
  • It is in a ‘reasonable’ state of repair;
  • It has ‘reasonably’ modern facilities & services;
  • It provides a ‘reasonable’ amount of thermal comfort.

What if my property is considered a non-decent home?

Landlords of property that is considered ‘non-decent’ could face fines and the possibility of not being able to evict their tenant through the S21 Notice route.

Click here to read the full article.

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