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Section 21

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600 views 1 replies latest reply: 15 February 2015
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Tenant

We have had 5 tenancy agreements since living here, but are now on a SPT. Back in November 2014 the agent sent us a new 6 month AST to sign along with a bill for £75 to renew it. We declined to pay the £75 and we just let it roll on to a SPT. Shortly afterwards they issued us with a Section 13 Notice to increase the rent by £50 a month. We referred their Section 13 notice to the Rent Assessment Committee. The RAC duly got back to us to say that the notice was invalid as it hadn’t been issued correctly. The agent has now issued us with a Section 21 notice to quit. We have always paid our rent on time and in full.

Are you able to confirm the validity (or not) of the Section 21 Notice on the following points please –

1.) We are joint tenants and they served us both with individual notices with just our own name on; I understand it to be the case that they should include all tenants on the one notice, though there seems to be some ambiguity.

2). As the tenancy rolled over to a SPT in November, should they not have issued us with the Prescribed Information again, as the SPT is deemed to be a new tenancy?
They did send us a Tenancy Deposit Scheme certificate a few days before the Section 21 notice arrived (the first one we’ve ever had), not sure why, I assume they think that suffices as PI.
We also had an email from the TDS a few days before that saying “welcome to the Tenancy Deposit Scheme”, again the first of those we ever had. The deposit was protected in June 2012 anyway! (albeit late).

3). We have never had a scheme leaflet even though the TDS site says they ‘must’ issue one to us and our TA says that the agent should provide us with one.

4). All previous PI’s have been attached to the tenancy agreements, though only the first one is signed by the agent. Should they all have been signed by the agent?

5). All the PI’s we’ve had have excluded certain information, namely – the address to contact us after the tenancy ends; our email addresses; and our mobile numbers. Are they legally obliged to have put this information on the PI?

Any help greatly appreciated, thank you.

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Administrator

Hi James

If you want ultimate confirmation you’ll need to speak to a lawyer. However, the following might help:

1. This case seems to suggest that section 21 notices can’t be served separately.

2. It looks from this as if an SPT is considered a new tenancy and the PI should have been issued in order for the landlord to be able to serve you with a valid section 21.

3. Everything I’ve come across also says the scheme leaflet ‘must’ be attached. Not sure as to the extent that this would affect the landlord’s obligations (might be worth consulting a free lawyer at a law centre).

4. The Residential Landlord’s Association says it ‘must’ be signed by the landlord or agent (the link I’ve provided in 5 below also mentions a signtaure).

5. This is the piece of legislation in question and yes it does appear to require it.

Hope that helps!

Alex

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