The government yesterday published its updated consultation outcome on private sector renting. The report can be read in full here but the main headline is a simpler tenancy structure and the end of fixed term tenancies in the private and social sector.
These reforms, being brought forward in the Renters Reform Bill, will be the largest change in the private rented sector for 30 years, and will also have a significant impact in the social sector.
All tenancies will be periodic - no more fixed terms. Tenants will be able to end a tenancy at any time on two months' notice. Landlords will only be able to end a tenancy in specific circumstances - no more section 21 evictions without grounds.
The removal of section 21 will also apply in the social sector, but the government has said specialist possession grounds will be made available for providers of temporary and specialist accommodation.
The government has also signalled the end of probationary and demoted tenancies in the social sector, often used to help deal with challenging behaviour, saying that private registered providers (PRPs) will be able to use new enhanced grounds for possession instead.
Shared ownership leases are technically assured shorthold tenancies (ASTs) and the government has recognised that legislative measures may be needed to ensure that the abolition of ASTs doesn't inadvertently undermine the shared ownership system. Clarification on this often criticised aspect of shared ownership can only be a positive.
The changes are to be introduced in two stages. The new regime will apply initially only to new tenancies granted after an implementation date to be specified and, after a further transition period, will apply retrospectively to existing tenancies.
There will be lots of change ahead and a lot of detail to digest in the Renters Reform Bill when published. The government has said that legislation will be brought forward in this Parliamentary Session.
The information on this site about legal matters is provided as a general guide only. Although we try to ensure that all of the information on this site is accurate and up to date, this cannot be guaranteed. The information on this site should not be relied upon or construed as constituting legal advice and Howes Percival LLP disclaims liability in relation to its use. You should seek appropriate legal advice before taking or refraining from taking any action.