Coronavirus - advice for private landlords, agents and tenants

Landlords and agents

The government web page contains the most up to date information about:

Legal requirements relating to gas safety certificates, electrical safety certificates, smoke alarms (detectors) and EPCs remain in place.

More specific information about Covid 19 relating to gas safety can be found on the Gas Safe Register website.

The above “Covid-19 and renting guidance” contains information about electrical safety certificates.

The Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Regulations requiring a smoke alarm (detector) in every hallway remain in place, as do the Management of Houses in Multiple Occupation Regulations which place additional requirements for fire safety in HMOs.

More specific information about Covid 19 relating Energy Performance Certificates (EPC) is available on the GOV.UK - Coronavirus: Energy Performance Certificates website.

More advice on matters relating to landlord and tenant law can be found on the National Residential Landlords Association website.

Tenants

The Coronavirus regulations have changed the process for giving notice to end tenancies (see below).

Repairs can still be undertaken. Report the required repairs to your landlord, as normal. Where the landlord does not respond or you are not satisfied with the response, then the Council can provide advice and assistance – as we have always been able to do. See Report disrepair in your private rented property for further information.

The government guidance Covid-19 and renting guidance for landlords and tenants contains information for tenants on notices to quit, gaining possession and repair obligations

Further information can be found on the Shelter website.

HMOs/ overcrowded houses and reducing the risk of infection

See the government guidance on HMOs and overcrowded houses and reducing the risk of infection.

Evictions

The eviction ban ended on 31st May 2021. This means that landlords can now apply for a bailiff’s warrant to evict tenants as before the pandemic. However there are likely to be delays as the courts work through their backlogs.

From 1 June 2021 to 30 September 2021 4 months’ notice will be required for a section 21 notice to quit, down from 6 months.

There are the same exceptions as before (antisocial behaviour, domestic abuse, rioting and false statement) but crucially, the rent arrears exception has changed so that only 4 weeks’ notice is required where rent arrears are over 4 months (down from 6 months).

For rent arrears of less than 4 months, the notice period will change to 2 months as of 1 August 2021. These extended notice periods do not apply to lodgers or licensees.

Further information can be found at GOV.UK Eviction ban

If you are a private tenant and you are being harassed or told to move out of your home by your landlord, please get in contact with our Tenancy Relations Officer for help or advice on 01865 252267.

Further information can be found on the GOV.UK - Guidance for landlords and tenants website.

Moving homes

The Government has changed the coronavirus (Covid-19) Regulations to allow individuals to move homes, during the outbreak. For further information on how this can be done safely, guidance is provided on the GOV.UK - Government advice on home moving during the coronavirus outbreak website.