Section 21 Consultation

Section 21 #nofaulteviction

We hear about the demise of the Section 21 ‘No Fault Eviction’

It has recently been announced that the Government intends to consult on bringing Section 21 no fault evictions to an end and putting a reliance on an adapted version of Section 8 which is the other option for gaining possession of a rental property, more often used where there is a breach of tenancy, you can read the current list of ‘Grounds’ (Here) that a landlord or their agent can use to gain possession of their property.

There are currently only 2 parties that can end an Assured Shorthold Tenancy, the Tenant and a Court of Law.

Currently if a tenant wants to end a fixed-term tenancy they do one of 2 things, they either leave at the end of the fixed-term of the tenancy or more likely give a month’s notice prior to the end of the tenancy to coincide with the end of the tenancy. Many tenants will currently be on a ‘Periodic’ agreement which means that the initial fixed term has expired but no new tenancy has been put in place, often favoured by the tenant as it gives them more flexibility, notice can be served at any point to end the tenancy, rather than having to wait to the end of a fixed-term period, in basic terms the tenancy rolls on month by month.

Section 21 has been a popular way for a landlord to request possession of their property as it gives guaranteed possession and can be used without detailing any breach of tenancy. It is rare that a landlord would use a Section 21 without good reason as it makes no business sense, we ask why you would evict a good tenant from your rental property. Good tenants are the lifeblood of the business that they are heavily invested in. With a Section 8, you will have noticed via the link above, there are both ‘Mandatory Grounds’ and what are called ‘Discretionary Grounds’, a discretionary ground is based on the decision of the presiding judge as to whether they grant possession or give the tenant a warning as to the breach and allow the tenancy to continue. 

We currently have experience of life without Section 21, we only have to look to the current system which has been introduced into Scottish Law.


Tenancies in Scotland have no end date so the tenant can stay for one month or for as long as they wish, there is only a start date. To end that tenancy the tenant must only give 28 days’ notice to the landlord or agent. The landlord however would only be able to serve notice with guaranteed possession for 3 reasons:

1.    They need to move in to the property.
2.    They have a close relative that needs the property.
3.    They need to sell the property.

Any breach of tenancy would be on a discretionary basis.

The landlord would need to give 84 days (twelve weeks) notice to request possession, on expiry of this period if the tenant had not left at that point they would need to apply to a Tribunal for the case to be heard. Following the Tribunal ruling the tenant would be given a further 30 days to appeal the decision. If a tenant still does not leave the property the landlord or agent then need to instruct a Sheriff (Bailiff) to evict the tenant, so we can see that this is a very long
and drawn out process, potentially lasting 7-8 months.

The idea behind this new consultation is that it will give a tenant a greater feeling of security in their home which can only be a good thing but it may well put some landlords off continuing in the sector and potentially make people think twice about renting a property without a guaranteed exit if things go wrong.

At Northwood we embrace change and legislation, we offer levels of service such as our Guaranteed Rent Scheme which alleviates this concern for landlords as we take on the whole eviction process if ever it be required. If you would like further information on letting property in the Stoke on Trent or Newcastle under Lyme area and how we can help then please do give us a call, we’re here to help. (01782) 636100 or