The Government has produced a new version of the How to Rent guide, entitled “How to Rent: The Checklist for Renting in England”.
The significance of this is that a landlord under an Assured Shorthold Tenancy (AST) will be prevented from serving a notice seeking possession under Section 21 of the Housing Act 1988, unless it has provided the tenant with prescribed information, including the current version of the How to Rent guide. Therefore it is essential the new version of the guide is given to a tenant at the outset of the tenancy, along with:
An Energy Performance Certificate
A Gas Safety Certificate
Prescribed information in relation to deposit protection, if a deposit is taken
The How to Rent guide can be provided in electronic format and for existing tenancies, where the previous edition of the guide has been provided, a further copy of the new version is NOT required. It is, however, important to retain evidence that a copy of the guide and the other documentation set out above has been provided.
The new version of the How to Rent guide refers to the Government’s intention to abolish “no fault” evictions under Section 21, though no timescale has been provided.
Our advice is: Watch this space!