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HMO fees’

In Gaskin v LB Richmond Upon Thames the High Court held that the private letting of accommodation amounted to a service within the meaning of the Services Directive making the Council’s fee for an HMO license unlawful in part. Background Mr Gaskin rented out a number of rooms in a number of properties. One particular […]

New Accelerated Possession forms

On 13th August HM Courts and Tribunals Services updated the N5B England and N5B Wales forms. Having examined both the new versions and old the only amendment to note is that on Page 7. On 25th May the General Data Protection Regulations came into force. It is due to the implementation of the Regulations that the form […]

New Tribunal Forms

On 31st August HM Courts and Tribunal Service published a range of forms relating to the Housing and Planning Act 2016 in respect of rogue landlords and lettings agents in England. The Housing and Planning Act creates two new options for local authorities who have obtained a conviction against a landlord or letting agent for one […]

Deposit Insurance

On 5 August a report published by the Centre for Policy Studies – Down with deposits: the case for rental insurance proposes that the government should promote a deposit replacement insurance system as an alternative to deposits. Polling by YouGov shows that 43% of renters would support a system of deposit replacement insurance with a […]

Invalid Section 8 notice

This is the second post on the case of Kassam v Gill. In the first post we concentrated on whether the possession order should be struck out as an abuse of process. In this post we will concentrate on the second ground of appeal which is whether the notice seeking possession under Ground 8 is […]

Eviction ‘Specialists’

A circuit judge in the County Court in Kassam v Gillhas held that ‘Remove a Tenant’ conducted litigation in breach of the Legal Services Act 2007. Appeal Grounds This was the tenant’s appeal against a possession order on Ground 8. The order also gave a money judgement for rent arrears of £13,386.49 and costs of […]

Shelter and the National Housing Federation

Shelter and the National Housing Federation have launched a new campaign to prevent landlords and letting agents from refusing to let properties to tenants who are on state benefits. A YouGov survey of almost 4,000 private renters found that almost a third of those in receipt of benefits said they had not been able to […]

Right to Rent – Judicial Review

The Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants’ (JCWI) legal challenge of the Right to Rent policy will be heard in the High court on 18th and 19th December. The JCWI’s argument is based on Article 8 and 14 of the European Convention on Human Rights. The 2-pronged challenge is based on first that the Right to […]

Minimum energy efficiency standards and listed buildings

On the PainSmith helpline we have received a number of enquiries about the minimum energy efficiency standards and listed buildings. Unfortunately, the advice is not straightforward and usually requires landlords to take certain steps. Our previous post on the subject can be read here. On 1st April this year the minimum energy efficiency standards (MEES) came […]

Registering with the Information Commissioners Office

Landlords and agents who process personal data (for example of tenants) must register with the Information Commissioners Office (ICO) and pay the necessary fee. Landlords who rent out property even where there is only one property in the portfolio are running a business for the purposes of this registration requirement. Therefore, landlords need to register […]

Out of time

Where a tenant attempted to challenge a Section 13 notice out of time the Court held in Robertson v Webb that there was no room for discretion to extend the time. The tenant had been served with a valid Section 13 notice proposing to increase the monthly rent. The tenant failed to pay the increased rent […]

Ombudsman Service removed

Lettings agents in England and Wales have been required to join a redress scheme since October 2014. However, the Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government has updated guidance for lettings agents to remove Ombudsman Services: Property, from the list of approved redress schemes. The government with the mutual agreement of the Ombudsman Services: Property, […]


Probably due to the current hot weather we are receiving quite a few calls on the helpline about pests and who is responsible for eradicating them. Unfortunately, the answer is not as straightforward as might be hoped. Furnished Property A landlord has a common law duty to ensure that furnished property is free from pests […]

Longer Tenancies consultation

The government has launched a consultation on “Overcoming the barriers to longer tenancies in the Private Rented Sector.” The consultation will close on 26th August 2018 and only applies to England at present. The objective of the consultation appears to be to seek views on new models of tenancy agreement which balance a tenant’s need for […]

Review of Private Rental Sector

This month the Housing, Communities and Local Government Committee (HCLGC) has written to the Government to express its disappointment with the Government’s response to its report on the Private Rental Sector (PRS). In April the HCLGC published its report on the PRS and some of its findings can be summarised as follows: Tenants need protection […]

Electrical safety checks

The government has clarified building regulations fire safety guidance following the Hackitt review and is now seeking views on the revisions. The recommendations of Dame Judith Hackitt have resulted in a consultation to seek views on government revisions. The consultation document and review of Approved Document B can be viewed here. Approved Document B is […]

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