Legislation and compliance news and guides for letting agents and estate agents

Keeping the lettings industry up to date with the latest on legislation and compliance in the private rented sector.

14 June 2021

4 questions to ask potential tenants as lettings demand heats up [+ free referencing checklist]

Demand is growing as we head into the traditionally busy summer months for lettings and you can make sure you’re not wasting your landlords' or agency’s time or money on applicants your referencing provider would advise against with just a few key questions.

9 June 2021

Right to rent: Government confirms new process for EU, EEA, and Swiss citizens after 30 June 2021

EU, EEA, and Swiss citizens will need to use the government's new "View and Prove" online service to demonstrate their right to rent in England after 30 June 2021.

7 June 2021

Deadline approaching for agencies subject to anti-money laundering legislation

Lettings businesses that are subject to money laundering legislation need to register with HMRC by 10 June, or risk a penalty, in addition to carrying out a risk assessment and customer due diligence to be compliant with The Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing (Amendment) Regulations 2019.

1 June 2021

Notice periods drop to 4 months for landlords and letting agents as evictions ban ends

Notice periods drop to four months from 1 June 2021 for landlords seeking to repossess their properties, with some exceptions, as the ban on evictions ends meaning bailiffs can reinforce possession warrants. The debt respite and furlough schemes will remain in place to ensure support is available for all parties as Covid-19 restrictions are lifted.

24 May 2021

The Covid-19 legislation deadlines that letting agents need to know in England, Scotland, and Wales

England, Scotland, and Wales each enacted legislation during Covid-19 to protect landlords and tenants, much of which is soon coming to an end - including the stamp duty holiday, evictions ban, and six-month notice periods. Here are the key dates that estate and letting agents and landlords need to know to stay compliant.

20 May 2021

Big lettings industry updates and a protracted claims process - Your insurance market snapshot [+ video]

Lee Redfearn, Insurance Development Manager at Goodlord, shares how and why the insurance claims process has increased in recent times, plus some updates on the latest lettings legislation and how this is affecting the insurance landscape.

17 May 2021

Section 21: Your guide to the proposed changes to evictions

The Government has announced it will reveal its plans to abolish Section 21 of the Housing Act 1988 under the Renters' Reform Bill in late 2021, including the results of its consultation.

17 May 2021

Section 8: Your guide to the proposed changes

The Government's key proposals for strengthening Section 8 when Section 21 is abolished include improving or widening the current grounds for repossession, including when a landlord wants to sell a property and if their family members want to move into a property.

17 May 2021

Renters' Reform Bill: Government confirms intention to introduce lifetime deposits

"Lifetime deposits" or "deposit passporting" looks set to become a reality under the Government's Renters' Reform Bill, with the proposals to be outlined in late 2021, but there are a number of operational and financial issues that would need to be resolved before they are introduced.

11 May 2021

Renters' Reform Bill: Queen's Speech confirms government's intention to "enhance the rights of those who rent"

The Queen's Speech confirmed that the Renters' Reform Bill is back on the agenda for 2021, with consultation response on the proposals, announced in 2019, to be published in the autumn.

4 questions to ask potential tenants as lettings demand heats up [+ free referencing checklist]

Posted by Andrea Warmington on 14 June 2021

Demand in lettings has been gradually building in recent months - and shows no sign of abating as we head into the summer, with rents currently high and voids low across England according to Goodlord's Rental Index. This means it's important to make sure you’re not wasting your agency’s time or money on applicants your referencing provider would advise against. 

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Topics: Compliance

Right to rent: Government confirms new process for EU, EEA, and Swiss citizens after 30 June 2021

Posted by Andrea Warmington on 09 June 2021

The government has confirmed how landlords and letting agents will check the right to rent status of EU, EEA, and Swiss citizens after 30 June 2021, many of whom will no longer be able to physically document their right to rent in England after this date. Citizens from the EU, EEA, and Switzerland who have successfully applied to the EU Settlement Scheme or for a UK visa will need to use the government's new "View and Prove" online service to share their right to rent status with landlords and letting agents. 

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Topics: Compliance

Deadline approaching for agencies subject to anti-money laundering legislation

Posted by Andrea Warmington on 07 June 2021

Estate and letting agents who receive rent payments equivalent to €10,000 or more per month for a property have been subject to anti-money laundering legislation - the Fifth Money Laundering Directive which falls under The Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing (Amendment) Regulations 2019 - since 10January 2020. To remain compliant, agencies that fall into this category must also register with HMRC by 10 June 2021.

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Topics: Compliance

Notice periods drop to 4 months for landlords and letting agents as evictions ban ends

Posted by Suzy Lycett on 01 June 2021

After nearly 14 months of extended notice periods, the notice that landlords will have to give to their tenants will drop to four months from 1 June in England. This is the first step towards notice periods dropping to pre-pandemic standards, expected by 1 October 2021. The evictions ban in England also came to an end on 31 May, meaning that bailiffs can re-start the enforcement of possession warrants.

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Topics: Compliance

The Covid-19 legislation deadlines that letting agents need to know in England, Scotland, and Wales

Posted by Suzy Lycett on 24 May 2021

Much of the new legislation relevant to the rental and property sector that was set out during the pandemic will end in the coming months. Here's a breakdown of the key legislative dates that estate and letting agents need to know in England, Scotland and Wales.

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Topics: Compliance

Big lettings industry updates and a protracted claims process - Your insurance market snapshot [+ video]

Posted by Lee Redfearn on 20 May 2021

This month, we're going to cover some stats from our Rental Index and take a mini deep-dive into how the Rent Protection landscape has changed quite dramatically in recent years, plus we've got a couple of big industry updates - all of which you can read or watch below.

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Topics: Compliance

Section 21: Your guide to the proposed changes to evictions

Posted by Andrea Warmington on 17 May 2021

The Government confirmed its intentions to repeal Section 21 of the Housing Act 1988 in the May 2021 Queen's Speech, as originally set out in the Renters' Reform Bill, released in late 2019. An outline for the proposals will be released in Autumn 2021, which will consider the response to the consultation that took place before the pandemic. The abolition of Section 21 would put an end to so-called “no-fault evictions” as part of its on-going project to create longer tenancies. The government also announced concurrent plans to strengthen the grounds for repossession under Section 8 of the Housing Act 1988.  

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Topics: Compliance

Section 8: Your guide to the proposed changes

Posted by Andrea Warmington on 17 May 2021

The Government confirmed its intention to make changes to Section 8 in the Queen's Speech May 2021 as a part of its Renters' Reform Bill, to make it easier for landlords and letting agents acting on their behalf to regain control of their properties when Section 21 is abolished. These changes will include  "strengthening repossession grounds for landlords under Section 8 when they have valid cause". The government's initial proposals, which we've summarised below, were set out in its consultation document in 2019.

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Topics: Compliance

Renters' Reform Bill: Government confirms intention to introduce lifetime deposits

Posted by Andrea Warmington on 17 May 2021

Lifetime deposits are on the horizon, confirmed the government following the Queen's Speech in May 2021, announcing it would release its proposals for a new "lifetime" tenancy deposit model in Autumn 2021 as part of a sweeping package of reforms for the private rented sector. “Lifetime” deposits aim to “ease the burden on tenants when moving from one tenancy to the next, helping improve the experience of those living in the private rental sector”.

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Topics: Compliance

Renters' Reform Bill: Queen's Speech confirms government's intention to "enhance the rights of those who rent"

Posted by Andrea Warmington on 11 May 2021

The Renters' Reform Bill is back on the agenda with the Queen's Speech confirming the government's intention to "enhance the rights of those who rent". In the briefing notes to the speech, the government announced that it would outline its "reform package" for the private rented sector in the autumn - which is set to include abolishing Section 21 and the introduction of lifetime deposits - with legislation to follow in due course.

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Topics: Compliance

The countdown to summer is on