On 3rd July we posted a blog on the amended How to Rent Guide. Whilst this may sound unbelieve we are now again posting on yet again an amended How to Rent Guide.
Our previous post on when and in what circumstances the Guide should be given to tenants can be read here.
The reason for this recent amendment appears to be due to an administrative error with the June 2018 version, which incidentally has vanished from the Ministry for Housing Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) website. The administrative error we refer to is in the naming of the How to Rent Guide.
The June 2018 Guide was called the “How to Rent: A guide for current and prospective tenants in the private rented sector in England”. However, the legislation which details what information to provide to a tenant introduced by the Deregulation Act states that the information document is entitled “How to rent: the checklist for renting in England”, which is the title of the July 2018 version.
This is no doubt very frustrating for landlords or agents who have already provided tenants with the June 2018 Guide. However, the requirement to provide prospective tenants, tenants who are renewing or statutory periodic tenants with the Guide does not specify a time period within which to provide it. Accordingly, whilst we cannot guarantee a Court may not take issue with it we would recommend that landlords and agents provide tenants with this new version and note why this has been done so that in the event of any issue arising a explanation can be provided to prevent any possible penalty. Unfortunately, at the moment the MHCLG website does not appear to provide any explanation or apology for this amendment so it could be up to landlords and agents to ensure they keep a record of this change and provide an explanation if necessary.