With the government’s recent announcement on the current rules in place around the banning of bailiff evictions (apart from in a set of specific serious circumstances) that were due to end on the 21st February and having been extended until the 31st March, I thought I would bring landlords up to speed with some information relating to the minefield in serving a Section 21 notice.
The pressures put on tenants and landlords alike through the pandemic are immense with some tenants losing their employment and landlords not receiving rent through rent arrears and therefore in some cases, defaulting on mortage payments.
300,000 case backlog in the court system
800,000 tenants in arrears
18 fold increase in arrears
200 new judges employed (some with and some without experience)
The figures above demonstrate we are in unprecedented times. The changes in legislation not only relate to a ban in bailiff evictions and the length of notice needed. The changes also relate to how a section 21 is served. This makes it so much more difficult for agents and landlords to get it right. Professional knowledge and experience is vital. Without the competency to get it right first time when serving notice could cause unbelievably lengthy delays but also cause huge financial headaches. Let’s face it, if landlords or agents make one small error in the serving a Section 21 notice, it is probably not going to be realised until the papers are served to the courts and go in front of the judge. More than likely some 9 months or more down the line.
To demonstrate this, I’ve listed below 15 reasons why a Section 21 notice may not be valid.
|Reason for Invalidity||Outline Description|
|Correct up to date form?||Form 6A is prescribed and must be the latest form published|
|Served correctly?||Is there a service clause in the agreement?|
|Has it been 4 months from start of tenancy?||Check Agreement hasn’t renewed commencement date|
|Notice expires before end of current term?||Is there a break clause in the Agreement? (not periodic)|
|Expiry date correct?||6 months from date of service (not sending)|
|Is Notice still valid? (alive)||Notice ceases to be valid 10 months from date of issue|
|Deposit protected?||Within thirty days from taking the money|
|PI served within 30 days||On all relevant parties (who paid deposit) including latest H2R guide|
|GSC, EPC & Electrical Certificates served||In date, current and served on time|
|If PI not served by the LL, was it signed by Partner/Director||Requirements for formal signing under the Companies Acts 2006 s44|
|Is property an HMO?||If yes, valid HMO Licence seen?|
|Is property Licenced Accommodation?||If yes, valid LA licence seen?|
|Has Local Auth issued a Relevant Notice?||If yes, has 6 months passed since issue of Notice?|
|Is form 6A signed properly?||Can be signed by member of your firm.|
|Tenants Fees Ban complied with?||Check deposit within limits and fees charged|
At Northwood, we’re confident we have the correct paperwork, procedures and support in place to get it right first time and every time. If you’re a landlord and need some advice or have any concerns, please get in touch. Even if we don’t manage your property, I’m more than happy to give you my time on an initial consultation free of charge.
Call 01228 53400 or email email@example.com
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