Ringing the changes in the Private Rented Sector

17 March 2021

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There have been many changes in the private rented sector over the last few years. Our property department manage multiple properties across the country; therefore, they have a clear understanding of what measures landlords need to put in place to rest assured knowing that they are fully compliant. Property Manager, Lois Renton, has detailed the three most recent changes to the sector that landlords need to be aware of.

The most recent change comes from the Coronavirus (Scotland) Act. This affects landlords specifically as it extends the eviction period. There is now clear guidance on what you must do regarding rent arrears before applying to the First Tier Tribunal. The notice period for most grounds is now 6 months and all grounds are discretionary. Expectation is that the changes will end at the end of September 2021.

The other change in legislation which affects all landlords is the change in tenancy agreement, known as the Private Residential Tenancy agreement (PRT) from the 2016 act.

  • PRT has been in use since 1st December 2017
  • Replaced the Short Assured Tenancy (SAT)
  • Less paperwork as no AT5, TIP or Prior Grounds notification
  • No ‘end of tenancy’ clause for possession, also known as ‘No fault’ clause
  • Different notice period and rent review timescales
  • No end date so theoretically the tenant can stay forever as long as they do not break any of the grounds or the landlord does not want to sell or move into the property

A big consideration for all landlords over the next few years will also be the minimum rating of the Energy Performance Certificate required to let a property.

  • From April 2022, all properties for new tenancies must be an EPC ‘D’ rating
  • From April 2025 all properties must be an EPC ‘D’ rating.

In addition to changes in EPC requirement, we also encourage landlords to research the upcoming changes to the Tolerable and Repairing Standards. These are a list of basic habitable requirements of the property which were changed in February 2021 and will change again in March 2024. Along with the basic compliance requirements, it is crucial that landlords put the correct measures in place as they are not recommendations, they are legal requirements.

Our property team can provide a document health check for landlords to ensure their tenancies are legal and compliant. We can also carry out a property inspection to suggest improvements, helping you comply with future EPC ratings.

As registered letting agents and registered factors, you can rest assured that your properties are in safe hands, whether you need straightforward letting guidance or require someone to manage every aspect of your property. For further information regarding any of the points above or to learn about our let only or managed property services, contact the property team by emailing property@fbrseed.com or visit the property webpage.

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