Latest News

Government extends support to stop business evictions in 2020

17 September 2020

Robert Jenrick, Secretary of State for Housing, announced yesterday, 16 September, that all commercial tenants will be protected from the risk of eviction until the end of this year. Read More...

Evictions post 20 September 2020

17 September 2020

The UK Government has published an updated form relating to property possession claims brought before 3 August 2020 that must be reactivated. These relate to claims already received by the court. Read More...

Mayor of London calls for a two-year freeze on private rents

16 September 2020

Today, 16 September, the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, wrote to the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, Robert Jenrick, calling the Government to give him the powers to freeze private rents as the economic fallout from COVID-19 continues. Read More...

New notice periods come into force

Friday 28 August 2020

Regulations outlining how six month notice periods will work in England, have been published today and will come into force on Saturday 29 August 2020. Following on from the intention announced last week by Secretary of State, Robert Jenrick, today's development effectively extends the Coronavirus Act 2020 through to 31 March 2021.

Government has announced its intention to support tenants in need as we enter Autumn and Winter months with widespread announcements on redundancies, while also responding to calls for justice from letting agents and landlords grappling with pre-COVID-19 rent arrears and anti-social behaviour.

From the start of the bank holiday weekend, Saturday 29 August, agents who need to issue section notices as a result of tenants incurring rent arrears or misleading information must allow six months before gaining possession. However, if the rent arrears exceed six months rental payments, the notice period will reduce to four weeks.

A number of other scenarios are addressed in a slab structure of possession proceedings:

  • In cases of domestic abuse or riot, two weeks' notice will be sufficient
  • Where landlords are seeking possession as a result of antisocial behaviour, four weeks' notice will be sufficient
  • Where tenants are required to vacate property as a result of failed follow up Right to Rent checks, 12 weeks notice will be required

Coronavirus Act updated Regulations

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Throughout the pandemic, ARLA Propertymark has consistently called for a coordinated approach to address the needs of the industry and ensure there is continued access to justice. Unfortunately, staggered announcements and last-minute legislation fail to consider the practical implications and knock-on effects for agents as businesses who manage multiple tenancies.

Long-term confidence and investment in the private rented sector are vital as the sector continues to house the nation. Consequently, now that the legislation to extend notice periods to six months has been introduced, the UK Government must turn its attention to supporting tenants who have built up arrears specifically through COVID-19 related issues and deliver a package of emergency measures to help maintain tenancies and #keeptherentflowing.

Timothy Douglas

Timothy Douglas
ARLA Propertymark Campaigns and Policy Manager

Propertymark continues to have daily dialogue with legislators, highlighting the practical issues and unintended consequences of legislation including the Coronavirus Act 2020, while supporting members to be fully compliant and offer the highest standards of service to all of their clients.