Coronavirus (Covid-19) information for letting agents and estate agents during lockdown

Helping the lettings industry stay compliant with changing legislation and advice during the continually-evolving Covid-19 pandemic.

1 December 2021

Guidance for moving home during Covid-19 updated in light of the Omicron variant

There is updated guidance available for estate and letting agencies to help mitigate the risk of infection from Covid-19, particularly in the face of the new Omicron variant.

10 September 2021

Notice periods return to pre-pandemic levels in England with new Section 21 and 8 forms required

After more than 18 months of disruption, notice periods have reverted to their pre-pandemic levels from 1 October 2021, with new versions of Section 21 and Section 8 notice forms for agents and landlords.

9 August 2021

UPDATED: Notice periods for rent arrears of less than four months reduced to two months

Notice periods for cases where there are rent arrears of less than four months have reduced to two months in England from 1 August 2021, with the notice period for arrears of more than four months remaining at four weeks.

29 March 2021

A guide for letting agents on returning remote staff members to work

How can you reassure your staff members that your workplace is safe? What can you do if staff members are refusing to return to work? What if a staff member is self-isolating but isn’t required to do so? DAS Law UK looks at what employers need to consider when returning staff members to work.

15 February 2021

ARLA Propertymark's Robert Bolwell answers letting agents' Covid-19 legislation questions

ARLA Propertymark's Robert Bolwell, Senior Partner at Dutton Gregory, answers questions on the Changes to the evictions process, serving notices and new court processes as a result of Covid-19.

8 February 2021

Your guide to what the Debt Respite Scheme (Breathing Space) means to landlords and agents [downloadable guide + webinar]

The Debt Respite Scheme, or "Breathing Space" law, will come into effect on 4 May 2021 in England and Wales, to "give someone in problem debt the right to legal protections from their creditors" - including tenants.

13 January 2021

Rent arrears of greater than six months exempt from evictions ban - including rent accrued since March 2020

The guidance for landlords and tenants during Covid-19 has been updated to make serious rent arrears "greater than 6 months' rent" exempt from the extended evictions ban in England - removing the stipulation that rent accrued since the start of the first lockdown in March 2020 could be discounted.

5 January 2021

Update: Your guide to what the Tier 4 and third lockdown restrictions mean for letting agents and house moves

As under Tier 4 restrictions, the lettings industry can continue to operate during the third national lockdown in England. Letting agencies can "continue to work" and people are permitted to move home.

4 January 2021

Post-holiday lettings update: Tenant safety as priority

Covid-19 guidelines for letting agents and landlords, updated with the introduction of a fourth tier and still applicable during the third national lockdown, continue to prioritise tenant safety while reminding agents of tenant protections in place.

23 November 2020

Tougher rules for businesses not following COVID-secure guidance when English lockdown ends

Local authorities will have greater powers to enforce compliance on businesses operating in an unsafe way, including financial penalties, when England returns to tiered restrictions on 2 December 2020.

Guidance for moving home during Covid-19 updated in light of the Omicron variant

Posted by The Goodlord team on 01 December 2021

The Omicron variant has led the government to update its guidance on safety measures to reduce the risk of transmission. It has confirmed that the housing market can remain open at this stage. All planned moves and viewings can continue and tradespeople can continue to work in other people's homes, unless self-isolation restricts access to a property. Everyone involved in the process of letting out a property, from letting agents and landlords to prospective tenants, is advised to keep up good hygiene practices, with hand washing and sanitising.

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Topics: Covid-19

Notice periods return to pre-pandemic levels in England with new Section 21 and 8 forms required

Posted by Andrea Warmington on 10 September 2021

Notice periods in England had been set at four-months in all but the most serious cases since June 2021, but have now returned to normal levels. In Wales, extended notice periods of six months will still apply until 31 December 2021, and in Scotland six month notice periods will last until 31 March 2022 - both with some exceptions. With a backlog of cases to be heard, the Chancellor also announced £324 million of funding for the courts over the next three years in his Autumn Budget 2021, to help alleviate this pressure on the system and speed up the claim to repossession process.

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Topics: Covid-19

UPDATED: Notice periods for rent arrears of less than four months reduced to two months

Posted by The Goodlord team on 09 August 2021

The situation with Covid-19 is rapidly changing and this article will continue to be updated throughout. For the latest guidelines, please refer to gov.uk.

Notice periods for cases where there are rent arrears of less than four months have reduced to two months in England from 1 August 2021. The notice period for "serious arrears" is four weeks’ notice, with "serious arrears" defined as four or more months of unpaid rent.

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Topics: Covid-19

A guide for letting agents on returning remote staff members to work

Posted by DAS UK on 29 March 2021

What should you consider when staff members who have been working remotely as a result of Covid-19 start returning to the office? Molly-Ellen Turecek of DAS Law UK looks at what employers need to consider when returning staff members to work.

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Topics: Covid-19

ARLA Propertymark's Robert Bolwell answers letting agents' Covid-19 legislation questions

Posted by The Goodlord team on 15 February 2021

Covid-19 continues to have a significant impact on lettings legislation. ARLA Propertymark's Robert Bolwell, Senior Partner at Dutton Gregory, joined Goodlord for a webinar to discuss the most recent changes, answer letting agents questions, and talk about what's on the horizon.

🎬Watch the whole Q&A here
🎧Listen to the whole Q&A here

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Topics: Covid-19

Your guide to what the Debt Respite Scheme (Breathing Space) means to landlords and agents [downloadable guide + webinar]

Posted by Suzy Lycett on 08 February 2021

Covid-19 may have left some tenants struggling to pay their rent, and this new law will ensure they have some "breathing space", giving them time to find a way to pay off their debts, from 4 May 2021, in England and Wales.

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Topics: Covid-19

Rent arrears of greater than six months exempt from evictions ban - including rent accrued since March 2020

Posted by The Goodlord team on 13 January 2021

The situation with Covid-19 is rapidly changing and this article will continue to be updated throughout. For the latest guidelines, please refer to gov.uk.

Agents should be aware of an update to the guidance for landlords and tenants during Covid-19, which now states that "serious rent arrears greater than 6 months’ rent" will be exempt from the evictions ban - regardless of when the arrears started to accrue.

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Topics: Covid-19

Update: Your guide to what the Tier 4 and third lockdown restrictions mean for letting agents and house moves

Posted by The Goodlord team on 05 January 2021

The situation with Covid-19 is rapidly changing. For the latest guidelines, please refer to gov.uk.

The government has confirmed that people can still move home and continue to view properties during the third national lockdown in England, as under Tier 4 restrictions, while continuing to follow appropriate Covid-19 safety guidelines. The lockdown will come into law on 6 January 2020 and is expected to be in place until at least February half term.

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Topics: Covid-19

Post-holiday lettings update: Tenant safety as priority

Posted by Suzy Lycett on 04 January 2021

The situation with Covid-19 is rapidly changing. For the latest guidelines, please refer to gov.uk.

The 2020 holiday period was disrupted by the introduction of Tier 4 Covid-19 measures across much of England, and now 2021 starts with a new national lockdown. The government has confirmed that the lettings industry can continue to operate under these restrictions, and its guidance for home moving emphasises that the safety of tenants should remain the "first priority" for agents and landlords.

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Topics: Covid-19

Tougher rules for businesses not following COVID-secure guidance when English lockdown ends

Posted by Andrea Warmington on 23 November 2020

The situation with Covid-19 is rapidly changing and this article will continue to be updated throughout. For the latest guidelines, please refer to gov.uk.

The Government has announced that England will be moving back into a system of tiered restrictions as part of its “Covid-19 Winter Plan” for when the second national lockdown ends on 2 December. Although the restrictions will be “tougher” than they were in October, it currently appears that the lettings industry will be able to continue operating as it has during the lockdown, with “moving home” listed as being exempt from the restrictions on gatherings at every tier. Courts will also remain open at every tier.

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Topics: Covid-19

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