How to Rent Booklet Updated 31st May 2019

How to Rent Booklet Updated 31st May 2019

8:52 AM, 3rd June 2019, About 2 years ago 21

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Just to add to the introduction of the Tenant Fees act on the 1st of June the government has updated the ‘How to Rent’ booklet the day before.

This updated version must now be given to tenants at the start of all new tenancies from the date it was changed – 31/05/2019.

Click Here to download the new booklet.

Landlords must serve an updated version of the ‘How to Rent’ booklet when a new tenancy starts and the booklet has been updated since the last one was granted. A statutory periodic tenancy is considered a new tenancy so an updated copy must be served before you can issue a Section 21.

“This guide is for tenants and landlords in the private rented sector to help them understand their rights and responsibilities. It provides a checklist and more detailed information on each stage of the process, including:

  • what to look out for before renting
  • living in a rented home
  • what happens at the end of a tenancy
  • what to do if things go wrong”


by Mark Alexander

11:16 AM, 3rd June 2019, About 2 years ago


1) Remember that in law a periodic tenancy is deemed to be a new tenancy, so this new "How To Rent Guide" must be issued when tenancies go periodic.

2) You must also re-issue prescribed information when a tenancy becomes statutory periodic

3) if you had previously taken more than 5 weeks rent deposit, when a tenancy becomes statutory periodic you need to refund any excess over 5 weeks rent deposit back to your tenant.

The above also applies if you grant a brand new tenancy.

by Luke P

11:24 AM, 3rd June 2019, About 2 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Mark Alexander at 03/06/2019 - 11:16I think you might be wrong on all three, Mark. Almost certainly 1 & 3, simply because the legislation specifies that a continuation/periodic is exempt (for these specific items…H2R and max. deposit).

by Neil Patterson

11:39 AM, 3rd June 2019, About 2 years ago

LANDLORD AND TENANT, ENGLAND The Assured Shorthold Tenancy Notices and Prescribed Requirements (England) Regulations 2015 >>

Requirement for landlord to provide prescribed information

3.—(1) A landlord under an assured shorthold tenancy of a dwelling-house in England, or a person acting on behalf of such a landlord, must give the tenant under that tenancy the information mentioned in paragraph (2).

(2)The information is the version of the document entitled “How to rent: the checklist for renting in England”, as published by the Department for Communities and Local Government, that has effect for the time being.

(3)The information may be provided to the tenant—
(a)in hard copy; or
(b)where the tenant has notified the landlord, or a person acting on behalf of the landlord, of an e-mail address at which the tenant is content to accept service of notices and other documents given under or in connection with the tenancy, by e-mail.

(4)Paragraph (1) does not require a landlord, or person acting on behalf of the landlord, who has provided the tenant with the document mentioned in paragraph (2) to supply a further copy of the document each time a different version of that document is published during the tenancy.

(5)This regulation does not apply—
(a)where the landlord is a private registered provider of social housing; or
(i)the tenancy (“the new tenancy”) is a replacement tenancy;
(ii)the landlord, or a person acting on behalf of the landlord, provided the tenant with the document mentioned in paragraph (2) under an earlier tenancy; and
(iii)the version of the document provided to the tenant under the earlier tenancy is the same version as the version which is in effect on the first day of the new tenancy.

(6)In this regulation “replacement tenancy” has the same meaning as in section 21(7) of the Act.

by Luke P

11:43 AM, 3rd June 2019, About 2 years ago

Also, page 40 (of 81) of The Fees Act ‘guidance’, the one for tenants, anyway, states:
Q. If I paid a tenancy deposit which exceeds the cap before 1 June 2019, can I ask my landlord or agent to re-pay the amount of the deposit above the cap?

No. Landlords and letting agents are not obliged to immediately refund part of a tenancy deposit that is above the cap but was paid before 1 June 2019. If you signed a tenancy agreement before 1 June 2019 (and your tenancy is continuing or is a statutory periodic agreement) then you will be bound by the terms of that contract until it is either renewed or terminated.

by TC

11:50 AM, 3rd June 2019, About 2 years ago

I had thought a periodic tenancy was a continuation rather than a new tenancy, so it would be good to understand if I have this wrong...

Great to have a new updated edition of the How To Rent guide though. Eagerly awaited for by many no doubt!

by Luke P

11:59 AM, 3rd June 2019, About 2 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Trevor Cooper at 03/06/2019 - 11:50
That, I believe WAS decided in a particular case, although the concern at that time was about whether a protected deposit required RE-protecting…

They simply are not joining up the thinking or legislation…

by Mark Alexander

12:27 PM, 3rd June 2019, About 2 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Luke P at 03/06/2019 - 11:24
Hi Luke

I'm taking a 'belt and braces' approach on all three.

The Superstrike case confirmed that a Statutory Periodic was a new tenancy. It is on that basis I offer my words of caution. Shelter are already advising Tenants and their lawyers to challenge landlords who haven't followed my guidance.

It might be some time before their arguments are heard in court, and we don't know what the outcome of such cases will be. However, if I am wrong then the only consequence is that more information has been provided than necessary. If I am right, the landlords who haven't followed my guidance could have big problems to deal with.

by Clint

12:54 PM, 3rd June 2019, About 2 years ago

In reply to Mark Alexander's Important Points. Please see below:

1. I have a single tenancy which consists of a fixed term and a contractual periodic term not a statutory periodic term. I take it in this case, I do not have to serve the "How to Rent Guide" again. Am I correct in stating this?

2. Once again, I do not believe that I have to serve the prescribed information again for reasons stated in 1.

3. I believe the same would apply as above in this case as well where I would not have to return any deposit amounting to above 5 weeks rent although, in any case, I do not believe this would apply to me

Any further comments regarding this would be much appreciated

by Neil Patterson

13:27 PM, 3rd June 2019, About 2 years ago

From the TDS >>

“What about existing tenancies with a deposit for more than the permitted amount? There is no requirement to refund deposit amounts exceeding the applicable 5 or 6 week limit, where a fixed-term agreement entered into before 1 June 2019 becomes a statutory periodic tenancy. l Where a tenant renews their tenancy by signing a new fixed term agreement on or after 1 June 2019, any amount of their existing deposit which exceeds the applicable 5 or 6 week rent limit for the new tenancy must be refunded.”

However, it is impossible to go wrong with Mark's approach and interpretation. Belt and Braces.

by Dylan Morris

13:33 PM, 3rd June 2019, About 2 years ago

I have new tenants whose tenancy started a few days ago on Saturday 1st June. I gave them the old copy of the guide as not aware of the update. I need to serve them with the new copy of course, but just wondering can I email the guide to them and ask them to confirm receipt by replying to my email ? Or do I need to physically print it off and get them to sign a letter ?

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