The main purpose of the bill is to provide protection for renters against no-fault evictions by eradicating the use of section 21 notices by landlords. A section 21 notice, giving 2 months’ notice to tenants, has previously been used by landlords to evict tenants without justification at the end of a tenancy period.
Landlords will only be able be able to evict their tenants if they have a valid ground for possession including when they wish to move back into their property, or the tenant has stopped paying rent. The existing section 8 grounds will be amended to provide a broader scope under which notice can be served.
The bill is said to be also aimed to help protect landlords by making the process easier for landlords to evict antisocial and troublesome tenants. This will include reform to the court process to speed up any possession proceedings.
A new ombudsman will be introduced which will have powers to assist tenants in issues such as the condition of their property. This is to ensure landlords are held accountable for their legal responsibilities.
An online portal will be introduced setting out in one place landlords’ obligations and responsibilities. The government has not yet confirmed the specifics of the portal, but it should help tenants and local councils see which landlords have been complying with their obligations.
There are a lot of changes due to be implemented and hopefully these will assist to protect both landlords and tenants.
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