8:11 AM, 30th September 2022, About A year ago 2
The Welsh Government has launched a consultation on plans to extend the notice period that landlords are required to give for converted contracts after the Renting Homes Wales Act comes into force on 1st December.
That’s when all tenancy agreements in Wales will be known as occupation contracts and tenants will be ‘contract-holders’.
Even tenancies that started before that date will convert into occupation contracts.
Along with changing the type of tenancy agreement, the Renting Homes Wales Act also introduces new rules around possession.
Instead of serving a Section 21 notice to end a tenancy, landlords in Wales will instead serve a Section 173 notice.
For tenancies starting on or after 1 December, landlords will need to provide a minimum of six months’ notice when serving a Section 173.
Landlords will also not be able to serve this notice in the first six months of the agreement and can only serve the notice if the agreement is outside the fixed term.
However, the rules are currently different for tenancies that began before 1 December and convert into occupation contracts.
During the first contract after conversion, landlords can serve a shorter notice period of two months when using a Section 173 notice.
These notices can also be served in the fixed term.
Once the initial converted contract ends and it is replaced by a new fixed term agreement or a periodic agreement, then the notice period required will be six months.
This means that under the current rules, if a tenant has a periodic tenancy agreement on 30 November 2022, then as long as it isn’t replaced with another agreement, a landlord will have access to the shorter notice period for as long as the tenants remain in place.
The Welsh Government has now opened a consultation proposing a time limit on using these two-month notice periods.
The consultation proposes that landlords with converted periodic contracts will only have access to the two-month notice between 1 December 2022 and 31 May 2023.
After this point, they must serve a six-month notice if they require possession.
The National Residential Landlords’ Association (NRLA) will be responding directly to this consultation, which closes on 24th October 2022.
The NRLA is now encouraging its members to respond directly to the consultation.
In addition, the NRLA is calling for full regulations relating to the Renting Homes (Wales) Act to be published in full to enable landlords as much time as possible to prepare for the changes.
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