Problem tenants are only a small minority, says Andrea Kirkby, but they can cause a huge amount of trouble for a landlord and letting agent.

Usually, the fastest and most effective way to deal with problem tenants, if things have reached a stage where the problem can’t be solved, is to issue a Section 21 notice and gain possession of the property. But the changes to regulations that came in on 1st October will make life more difficult for landlords and lettings agents. (Note that the changes only apply to England.)

All new Assured Shorthold tenancies signed since 2015 have already had to comply with new rules. Now, older tenancies are also being required to comply; as Paul Shamplina of Landlord Action says, “all old tenancies are now new tenancies”. It’s just the kind of rule that will catch landlords with long-established tenancies out. If all the requirements of the regulations aren’t met, you won’t be able to serve a valid Section 21 notice, and evicting a problem tenant will become much more difficult and costly.


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