On 21 June 2021 the Government updated its guidance for landlords in regards to rent, mortgage and possession proceedings.
The Coronavirus Act 2020 gave protection to social and private tenants by delaying when landlords could evict tenants if their rent is in arrears.
With COVID restrictions easing we expected the protection rules to come to an end, however, the Government has extended its powers until potentially March 2022. This means:
- Between 29 August 2020 and 31 May 2021 landlords must give their tenants 6 months notice before starting possession proceedings.
- From 1 June 2021, notice periods must be at least 4 months including where the tenant has less than 4 months rent arrears.
- From 1 August 2021, the notice period for cases where there are less than 4 months of unpaid rent, will further reduce to 2 months notice.
- The notice period for ‘serious arrears’ is 4 weeks notice and the threshold for what constitutes ‘serious arrears’ includes arrears equivalent to 4 or more months rent.
The Government have funded a pilot mediation process, the Rental Mediation Service (“RMS”), as part of its court process and it is free for landlords and tenants to use.