Increasing numbers of landlords are being forced to issue a second Section 8 notice to tenants who have stopped paying their rent as the sector grapples with the ‘crazy’ evictions rules in place now, it has been claimed.
The UK’s leading lettings industry trade body ARLA Propertymark says the Covid eviction rules which require landlords to give six months’ notice of their intention to evict are now forcing many to issue a second Section 8 notice when their tenants fall more than six months’ behind in their rent.
“We’re looking at situations now where the clients have served a six-month notice initially, when the rent arrears are quite small, but when we get to that six months [of arrears] mark, we might be serving another notice because…of the shorter period [of four weeks’ notice],” Robert Bolwell (left), Senior Partner at Dutton Gregory, which manages the ARLA Propertymark Legal Helpline, told a Goodlord webinar yesterday.
“The general rule is, it’s never wrong to serve additional notices.”
Paul Shamplina of leading evictions firm Landlord Action, agrees: “We are already serving additional Section 8 notices for landlords.
“Our team is dealing with clients who have four months’ rent arrears, telling us that they are hoping the tenant does not pay the next two months, so they can serve the four week notice period; it’s crazy.
“You will get tenants catching on to the new time frame periods who will make small payments to keep the arrears to under six months, so the landlord can’t serve a four week notice period.
“It’s going to be really tough on landlords, the reality is landlords are very unlikely to be able to re-coup the lost arrears.”