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For assured shorthold tenancies, there are two types of notices that can be served on a tenant requiring them to give up possession of the property.
· Section 21 Notice
· Section 8 Notice
Please note, if you have taken a deposit for the property and you have not protected the deposit and served the prescribed information within the required period, any Section 21 notice you serve will be invalid. We can provide further advice and assistance to help you remove your tenant in these circumstances.
Section 21 Notice
A Section 21 must give the tenant at least two clear months’ notice to vacate, not eight weeks which is a mistake often made and must be made in writing. For all tenancies (even those granted on or after October 1, 2015), there are requirements with which you must comply before you can serve a Section 21 notice.
Section 8 Notice
A Section 8 notice is most commonly used in cases of rent arrears, but can be used in other circumstances, for example, antisocial behaviour or other breach of tenancy.
It can be issued using a number of grounds which are detailed in Section 8. They appear in Schedule 2 to the Housing Act 1988. Grounds 8, 10 and 11 are the main grounds, and the wording of each must be specified in the notice.
When to serve a Section 8 Notice
It is best to use a Section 8 notice when the tenant is two months or eight weeks in arrears.
Once served, a Section 8 notice gives the tenant two weeks to vacate the premises or pay the arrears before proceedings for possession can be issued.
In our experience, the tenant rarely pays after a Section 8 notice is served, and possession proceedings usually follow.
If, when the Section 21 or Section 8 notice expires, the tenant has not vacated the property, possession proceedings must be issued otherwise you may face an unlawful eviction claim and prosecution by the local authority.
Please note, the local authority does not usually re-house a tenant until a possession order is made. If the local authority finds out about the arrears, they will treat the tenant as intentionally homeless and may not re-house them at all.
If the tenant fails to vacate after the possession order is given, then a Warrant of Possession will need to be issued. We will require specific documents and information from you, including the tenancy agreement, names and addresses and a clearly set out rent statement to assist the judge.
The tenancy agreement.
Full names and addresses of the landlord and the tenant.
A rent statement in four columns.
This enables the judge to see clearly what the arrears are on any given date including on the date of service of the notice and the date of the court hearing - relevant for Section 8 notices.
Short details of efforts made by you to collect the arrears and any correspondence.
Confirmation of protection of any deposit and service of prescribed information.
Copy of any notices served (if you have served notice yourself).
Where applicable, evidence which confirms you have given each tenant the ‘How to Rent’ booklet, gas safety record and energy performance certificate.
Details of any issues raised by the tenant about repairs to the property.
Submit an enquiry and one of our team of experts will be in touch as soon as possible to discuss your needs.
Or call our landlord services team on 01472 262650