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Deregulation Act 2015

Deregulation Act 2015 effective 1 October 2015 helped clarify pre-existing laws and removed redundant ones. Provisions affect all new ASTs in England and Wales:
  • Gas Safety certificate. EPC Energy Performance Certificate and How to Rent Guide must all be provided before start of a tenancy or a S.21 is later denied to landlords.  See exception below Minister v Hathaway 2021
  • Section 21 Notices to Quit (NTQ) simplified - single form (replaces two former forms) and its use now depends on:
    • deposit protection (if taken) and
    • compliance with maintenance / repairs / housing conditions, especially relating to health and safety,
    • EPC and .
    • Eviction proceedings must begin within 6 months of issue of S.21 NTQ.  I.e. Section 21 NTQ Expires (lapses) after 6 months.
      • Issue is not permitted within the first 4 months of a tenancy
      • So e.g. with a six month tenancy, after 4 months landlord issues s.21 NTQ, then after the tenancy expires if the tenant still remains, the landlord is permitted to proceed to court.
      • The landlord must therefore bring legal proceedings within the remaining four months before the S.21 NTQ expires i.e. after 10 months of the tenancy (in this scenario)
      • E.g. Tenancy commences on 1 January 2022, S.21 issued 1 April 2022, tenancy ends 30 June 2022, landlord must issue court summons for possession by 31 October 2022 (i.e. 6 months from 1 May 2022 to 31 October 2022).
    • Notice cannot be issued until after 4 months of tenancy has elapsed, using Form 6A (aka Section 21).
    • (Note.  Do not confuse s.21 and s.8 notices.  Eviction proceedings must begin within 12 months of issue of a S.8 NTQ.)
  • Retaliatory evictions outlawed.  Legitimate requests by tenants for repairs should not be met with eviction.  Landlords must respond to requests to repair within 14 days.
  • Tenancy Deposit registration and Protection (formerly via Localism Act) revised.  Fines of 1 to 3 times rent for failure to protect or provide prescribed information.  No need to provide prescribed info when renewing with same tenants [but I am taking no chances!]
  • Prescribed Information includes EPC, Gas certificate, How to Rent Guide, Deposit registration docs where taken.
  • Landlords and agents must inform tenants of their new rights [by providing clauses in ASTs].
  • Exceptionally - Tenancies commenced before the Deregulation Act was enacted do not require landlords to have provided an EPC, gas safety certificates and How to Rent guide etc prior to issuing the section 21 Notice to quit according to the appeal case of  Minister v Hathaway 2021 as their tenancy was granted before 1 October 2015 Deregulation Act enacted.

See also

Published: 29 November 2021 Last Updated: 28 December 2021