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Section 21 Notes

By Miguel Hernandez,2014-05-19 11:40
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Section 21 Notes

Section 21 Notices

    The most assured way to gain possession when you do not wish to renew or extend the Tenancy Agreement.

    Section 21 of the Housing Act 1988 requires that the landlord provides tenants of an Assured Shorthold Tenancy (AST) with a minimum of two months’ notice in writing that he/she wants possession of the property. Extra days should be added if the notice is to be sent by post as the two months starts when the tenant receives the notice. The notice must be served before possession action can be started. In the case of joint landlords the notice can be given by any one of them. Possession under this section cannot take place during the initial six months of the original tenancy. The provisions in section 21(1)(b) apply to fixed term tenancies. They state:

    Without prejudice to any right of the landlord under an assured shorthold tenancy to recover possession of the dwelling-house let on the tenancy in accordance with Chapter I above, on or after the coming to an end of an assured shorthold tenancy which was a fixed-term tenancy, a court shall make an order for possession of the dwelling-house if it is satisfied:-

    a) that the assured shorthold tenancy has come to an end and no further assured tenancy

    (whether shorthold or not) is for the time being in existence, other than a statutory periodic

    tenancy: and

    b) the landlord, or in the case of joint landlords, at least one of them has given to the tenant

    not less than two months' notice stating that he requires possession of the dwelling-house.

    Notice under this subsection can be served on a tenant at any time during the fixed term of the tenancy (but not before the fixed term begins) provided that the tenant receives a minimum of two months’ notice. This is the case even if the two months notice ends after the tenancy agreement has expired. For example, if notice requiring possession is served on the last day of the tenancy agreement, the tenant does not have to give up possession of the dwelling-house until at least two months after the date that the notice was served.

    The notice should be dated in accordance with the provisions above. Also, a notice should not be dated to expire on or before the last day of the tenancy as this would be invalid. For example, where the tenancy was due to expire on December 31st, then the section 21 notice could be served on or before October 31st, and the notice dated to expire ‘after December 31st’.

Section 21 Notes

These are the most common notices you will issue.

    It is recommended that you serve at the start of the tenancy to prove service (at that stage the tenant will sign anything you want).

DO NOT serve the notices before the start of the tenancy.

    The best time to serve is when the keys are collected. This is because the notice has to be served by the landlord and you do not become the landlord until the tenancy begins.

Remember to keep a copy of the notices.

    These are not prescribed notices, but there is a general feeling that the small print you will see at the bottom of each page is required because of the Notices to Quit (Prescribed information) Regs 1988.

The first notice refers to S21(1)(b) and is issued up to and including the last day of the tenancy.

The notice will expire 2 calendar months after the day of service.

It cannot however, expire before the end of the tenancy or the break clause, if there is one. Once served

    it stays in force unless you either:-

    1. Issue a new Agreement;

    or

    2. Issue a letter of extension;

    or Increase the rent.

    Apart from that there is no limit to the expiry time of the notice.

The second notice refers to S21(4)(a) and is issued after the agreement has expired - if you haven’t

    already served S21(1)(b) at the start of the agreement.

    This notice has to be at least 2 calendar months in length. It has to expire on the last day of a period of the tenancy which should mean the day before the rent is due under the agreement.

    (Do not take notice of how you receive Housing benefit payments here).

The Court form to use for Possession is Form N5B.

    Example: AST for 12 months

    Sat 7 April 2001 to Sat 6 April 2002 - Saturday usually becomes the Rent Day

    Therefore Notice Period - Served before:

    Friday 19 July 2002

    Friday 20 Sept 2002

    HOUSING ACT 1988

    Section 21 (4)(A)

NOTICE REQUIRING POSSESSION OF A DWELLING-HOUSE LET UNDER AN

    ASSURED SHORTHOLD TENANCY - (for use after the expiry of a tenancy agreement)

    To: .................................................................................................. (Tenant)

    of: ................................................................................................... (Landlord)

    I: .....................................................................................................

    of: ...................................................................................................

give you notice that I require possession of the dwelling-house known as:

    ..........................................................................................................

    ..........................................................................................................

ON the expiry of this notice by virtue of Section 21(4) of the Housing Act 1988.

    This notice expires AFTER: ....................................... or the last day of a period of the tenancy next occurring.

    Date: ................................................................................................

    Signed: ............................................................................................

    On or after the coming to an end of a fixed term Assured Shorthold Tenancy, a court must make an order for possession if the landlord has given a notice in this form. Where there are joint landlords, at least one of them must give this notice. The length of the notice must be at least two months and the notice must be given before or on the day on which the fixed term comes to an end.

NOTES:

    1 Notice must be served on a tenant of a dwelling house (which here includes part of a

    dwelling-house) let under an assured shorthold tenancy before proceedings for

    possession can be brought under Section 21 of the Housing Act 1988.

2 The expiry date of the notice cannot be earlier than:

    (a) where notice is given during, on or before the ending of a fixed term tenancy the date

    when the fixed terms ends:

    or

    (b) where notice is given during the subsistence of a periodic tenancy, the date which is the

    last day of a period of the tenancy and is a date upon which (apart from the security

    provided by Section 5 (1) of the Act) the tenancy could be brought to an end by a notice to

    quit given on the same date as this notice:

and

    (c) in either case not earlier than two months after the date when the notice is given

    If the tenant or licensee does not leave the dwelling, the landlord or licensor must get an order for possession from the court before the tenant or licensee can lawfully be evicted. The landlord or licensor cannot apply for such an order before the notice to quit or notice to determine has run out.

    A tenant or licensee who does not know if he has any right to remain in possession after a notice to quit or a notice to determine runs out can obtain advice from a solicitor. Help with all or part of the cost of legal advice and assistance may be available under the legal aid scheme. He should also be able to obtain information from a Citizens Advice Bureau, a Housing Aid Centre or a Rent Officer.

    HOUSING ACT 1988

    Section 21 (1)(B)

NOTICE REQUIRING POSSESSION OF A DWELLING-HOUSE LET UNDER AN

    ASSURED SHORTHOLD TENANCY - (for use during, on or before the end of a tenancy)

    To: .................................................................................................. (Tenant)

    of: ................................................................................................... (Landlord)

    I: .....................................................................................................

    of: ...................................................................................................

give you notice that I require possession of the dwelling-house known as:

    ..........................................................................................................

AFTER the expiry of this notice.

    This notice expires AFTER: ............................................................ next occurring.

    Date: ................................................................................................

    Signed: ............................................................................................

NOTES:

    1. Notice must be served on a tenant of a dwelling house (which here includes part of a

    dwelling-house) let under an assured shorthold tenancy before proceedings for

    possession can be brought under Section.21 of the Housing Act 1988.

2. The expiry date of the notice cannot be earlier than:

    (a) where notice is given during, on or before the ending of a fixed term tenancy the date

    when the fixed terms ends:

    or

    (b) where notice is given during the subsistence of a periodic tenancy, the date which is the

    last day of a period of the tenancy and is a date upon which (apart from the security

    provided by Section 5 (1) of the Act) the tenancy could be brought to an end by a notice to

    quit given on the same date as this notice:

    and

    (c) in either case not earlier than two months after the date when the notice is given

    If the tenant or licensee does not leave the dwelling, the landlord or licensor must get an order for possession from the court before the tenant or licensee can lawfully be evicted. The landlord or licensor cannot apply for such an order before the notice to quit or notice to determine has run out.

    A tenant or licensee who does not know if he has any right to remain in possession after a notice to quit or a notice to determine runs out can obtain advice from a solicitor. Help with all or part of the cost of legal advice and assistance may be available under the legal aid scheme. He should also be able to obtain Information from a Citizens Advice Bureau, a Housing Aid Centre or a Rent Officer.

    SECTION 21 NOTICES - These are the most common notices you will issue.

It is recommended that you serve at the start of the tenancy to prove service (at that stage the

    tenant will sign anything you want)

DO NOT serve the notices before the start of the tenancy.

The best time to serve is when the keys are collected. This is because the notice has to be

    served by the landlord and you do not become the landlord until the tenancy begins.

Remember to keep a copy of the notices.

These are not prescribed notices, but there is a general feeling that the small print you will see at

    the bottom of each page is required because of the Notices to Quit (Prescribed information) Regs 1988.

    The first notice refers to 521(1)(b) and is issued up to and including the last day of the tenancy.

The notice will expire 2 calendar months after the day of service. It cannot however, expire

    before the end of the tenancy or the break clause, if there is one.

Once served it stays in force unless you either:-

1. Issue a new Agreement

or

2. Issue a letter of extension.

    Apart from that there is no limit to the expiry time of the notice.

The second notice refers to 521(4)(a) and is issued after the agreement has expired - if you

    haven’t already served 521(1)(b) at the start of the agreement.

This notice has to be at least 2 calendar months in length.

    Has to expire on the last day of a period of the tenancy which should mean the day before the rent is due under the agreement.

    (Do not take notice of how you receive Housing benefit payments here)

The Court form to use for Possession is Form N5B.

Example: AST for 12 months

    Sat 7 April 2001 to Sat 6 April 2002 Saturday usually becomes the Rent Day

Therefore Notice Period - served before:

     Friday 19 July 2002

     Friday 20 Sept 2002 = 8 Weeks Notice

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