LEGISLATION UPDATE BLOG
( Date: 31.3.22 )
The Scottish Government has announced that from the 31st March 2022, landlords will no longer need to serve 6 months notice to bring a tenancy to an end.
The 6 month notice rule was introduced by the Scottish Government as part of a number of emergency laws that were introduced into the Scottish Private Rented Sector in 2020 as a response designed to help make the rental sector more stable during the upheaval that the COVID pandemic caused on the market.
The Scottish Government had explored making the 6 month notice rule permanent as part of their agenda to create a New Deal for Tenants, but the evidence shows that this particular rule change has not been good for the sector.
The Scottish Association of Landlords presented evidence to the Government showing that, due to the extended notice periods, some tenants were accruing rent arrears that they remain liable for and could never afford to repay resulting in a negative situation for all concerned.
The rolling back of notice periods to the pre-pandemic rules (where landlords serve either 28 days or 84 days’ notice on tenants depending on the circumstances) is very good news for the sector as there is a definite shortage of new landlords and rental properties which is having an extremely negative impact on the number of available properties in the market. This in turn is heating the market and driving asking rents up as more and more prospective tenants compete for fewer properties.
The government also announced this week that the temporary downgrading of compulsory grounds for repossession to discretionary, which was part of the same emergency laws introduced in 2020, will continue until September 2022 and will thereafter be reviewed again. This shouldn’t affect most cases for repossession as long as landlords can demonstrate a strong enough case for taking back their properties under one of the grounds for doing so.
The Scottish Government is currently considering the simple measure of restricting rent levels on the market, but the evidence shows that a change like this would have a negative impact on the number of landlords and properties in the market, exacerbating many of the issues the government are trying to address.
This highlights the importance for landlords to have qualified and knowledgeable agents managing their properties to ensure that they are receiving the most up to date and accurate advice relating to eviction actions and general management of the property.
If you need any help with evictions, tribunal applications or management of your property, please do not hesitate to contact Cairn and one of our qualified and experienced property managers will be on hand to help with all of your queries.
For Glasgow 0141 270 7878, Edinburgh 0131 346 4646 or Portobello 0131 622 6215