A new Section 21 form has been released. New regulations will require landlords to provide tenants with EPC’s, Gas Safety Certificates, and now a DCLG Booklet on “How to rent” to be eligible to serve a ‘No Fault’ Section 21 eviction notice.
The new regulations will apply to new tenancies from 1st October 2015, and then to all tenancies will be impacted from October 1st 2018.
The Statutory Instrument can be viewed in full here “The Assured Shorthold Tenancy notices and Prescribed Requirements (England) Regulations 2015”.
The new regulations will require landlords to serve relevant bits of information to tenants in order to be eligible to serve Section 21(1) or Section 21(4) notices.
Crucially: The notice cannot be served until 4 months after the tenancy starts and cannot be used 6 months after it has been served at which point a fresh one would need serving. The notice cannot be served for 6 months after a local authority has served an improvement notice or carried out emergency remedial action
The important regulations also include:
Regulation 2 – Compliance with prescribed legal requirements: this gives landlords the legal responsibility to provide the tenant(s) with a relevant Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) and gas safety certificates.
If a landlord does not provide this information tenants are not responsible for conforming to the 28 day period notice to quit.
Regulation 3 – Requirement for landlord to provide prescribed information: in this instance the information is the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) document titled “How to rent: the checklist for renting in England”.
You can access the document by clicking here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/how-to-rent
Under regulations, landlords are required to provide the most up to date version of the document at the beginning of tenancies – they are not required to provide updated version during the tenancy or if the tenancy becomes a ‘replacement tenancy’ (that is, when a tenancy renews with same tenants, landlords and basis of tenancy agreement).
Interestingly the regulations allow landlords to serve the DCLG “How to rent” document electronically – via e-mail – if the tenant(s) agree to it.
The new form, and explanatory note can be found here: http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2015/1646/contents/made