Section 21 and the Deregulation Act 2015 - What it means for landlords

28 Sep 2015

Pursuant to Housing Act 1988, a residential landlord of an assured shorthold tenancy who wishes to recover possession of the tenanted property may do so in two principal ways.

Should the tenant breach the terms of the tenancy, for instance by failing to pay the monthly rent or by engaging in unlawful activity in the property, the landlord may serve the tenant with a notice seeking possession pursuant to section 8 Housing Act 1988. Should the landlord establish that the tenant owed two months’ rent or more at service of the Section 8 notice and that the tenant continues to owe two months’ rent or more at the date of the hearing, the court is obliged to order possession. If the tenant has breached the terms of the tenancy in a different way, for instance by engaging in anti social behaviour, the court has a discretion as to whether to order possession.

Alternatively, a landlord may serve a possession notice under section 21 of the Housing Act 1988. Pursuant to section 21(1) and the (4)Housing Act 1988, the court must order possession as long as the fixed term of the tenancy has expired, the tenant has enjoyed six months’ security of tenure and the landlord has given a legally compliant notice.


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Disclaimer: This document does not present a complete or comprehensive statement of the law, nor does it constitute legal advice. It is intended only to highlight issues that may be of interest to clients of BLM. Specialist legal advice should always be sought in any particular case.

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