England & Wales

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Landlord Redress Schemes

The Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government (MHCLG) has announced this month that it will bring forward legislation to require landlords to join a mandatory redress scheme. This is part of a wider set of proposals to shake up redress across the entire residential sector and fill in gaps in existing redress. MHCLG is […]

Tenant Fees Bill – update

The Tenant Fees Bill is now expected to come into force on 1 June 2019. Once the Bill receives Royal Assent it will apply to all tenancies that are agreed, whether new or renewed, after this date. Our previous posts on the Bill can be read here. The Bill had its third reading in the […]

E-Signatures and contracts

This is our second post this year on e-signatures. Our first post on e-signatures and deeds can be read here.  In our previous post we discussed deeds and whether it was appropriate to sign them by way of e-signature. We are aware that agents and landlords are using e-signatures on contractual versions of agreements that […]

E-Signatures & Deeds

E-signatures are on the rise in the rental market, but it is not always a good idea to have all documents signed this way especially where the document is a deed.  Many lettings agents and landlords will be familiar with Deeds and where and when it is appropriate to use them. Examples of such documents […]

Energy Supplier collapse

Spark Energy, a specialist supplier to tenants in the Private Rented sector became the seventh supplier to collapse this year. Fortunately for many tenants OVO Energy has been selected by Ofgem to take over the Spark Energy brand. Spark Energy acquired its largely private rental sector tenant customer base through letting agent referrals. Rental properties […]

Protecting your rental property this winter

Winter can pose a problem for rental properties especially where tenants are planning to be away for the holiday period. Landlords are therefore advised to ensure that they consider some simple steps to ensure to avoid potentially costly repairs. Exterior of the property Checking the exterior of the property ideally in the Summer or Autumn […]

McDonald v McDonald – ECtHR

The European Court of Human Rights reiterates the UK Supreme Court’s decision that tenants facing a section 21 possession claim can not invoke Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights in F.J.M v UK. Background A tenant occupied a property under an assured shorthold tenancy. Initially the tenant’s landlords were her parents who […]

Homes (Fitness for Human Habitation) Bill

The Homes (Fitness for Human Habitation) Bill has passed through the House of Commons and will now be scrutinised in the House of Lords, starting later in November. The Bill is likely to become law so below is a summary of the main provisions. At present there is no legal requirement for landlords to keep […]

Banks’ discrimination

Buy-to Let Mortgage providers have been accused of discriminating against tenants who claim benefits. It is understood that landlords who apply for buy-to-let mortgages and in some cases landlord’s insurance are being refused products when they reveal that potential tenants are claiming benefits. The Residential Landlords Association (RLA) has carried out research which found 66% […]

Right to Rent – again

The House of Commons Library has produced a briefing paper with an overview of the Right to Rent scheme. The briefing paper is some 35 pages but, below is a summary of some important points: The paper acknowledges that the RtR has proved controversial with concerns raised in a number of areas: The additional burden […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

Pests

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 […]

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