The current situation is nothing if not complicated, however, I will try and set out a summary of where we appear to be now and where we appear to be heading. The first thing to keep in mind is that England and Wales are now on slightly different systems. Wales has already introduced a requirement for a 6 months’ notice period. Notice periods in England were still, at the time of writing this, 3 months. This had been the case for all notices that were served on or after 26th March 2020; however on 29th August 2020 the notice period extended to 6 months for most notices. This is intended to ensure that tenants are not made homeless over the winter period.
There has been a recent case looking at the issue of “No DSS” policies adopted by Letting Agents. This arose at trial in Birmingham County Court where Mr Tyler brought a claim against a letting agent who operated a “no DSS” policy.
As most landlords know there have been many changes at very short notice to the requirements for Notice to tenants. One of these changes has just come in to force on 29th August and it is now a requirement that tenants are given 6 months’ notice. This will apply to almost all notices. If you would like any advice on this, or on any other landlord and tenant issues please do not hesitate to contact our litigation team on 01273 582271 or firstname.lastname@example.org
We have recently become involved in a matter where the issue of which tenants have given notice on behalf of which tenants has become problematic.
We have been instructed by Landlords who have let accommodation to three tenants. The tenancy agreement is on the basis that the tenants are jointly and severally liable for the rent.
One of the tenants has given notice to the Landlords. The notice is stated as being on behalf of all of the tenants. The Landlords have found new tenants and everything seemed to be fine.
The Landlords have now instructed us because just 1 week before the new tenants are due to move in they have found out that one of the three tenants did not actually intend to leave and therefore did not give Notice and does not agree that the person who gave Notice on her behalf had her permission to do so. This has understandably caused our clients enormous stress.
As a Landlord you may have been aware of a case called Caridon Property Limited –v- Monty Shooltz, and if not then you may have been aware of the implications arising from it. In this case the Court had been of the opinion that where a Landlord failed to give a new tenant a copy of the gas safety certificate for the new property before he moved in, he was thereafter forever unable to serve a Section 21 notice to terminate any tenancy. He therefore would be limited to using a Section 8 notice in order to remove a tenant.
However, luckily for Landlords, this has recently been looked at again in the case of Trecarrell House Limited –v- Rouncefield.