Special Case of Serving a Section 21 Notice

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    Special Case of Serving a Section 21 Notice

    I have a special circumstance for which I require advise.

    I've let a room to a tenant on a 5 months short-let room-only non-AST contract back in 2017, with periodic monthly renewal beyond the initial period. He has stayed at the property since, and I understand that his tenancy having lasted more than 6 months will have automatically turned into and deemed as an AST.

    I have not presented any of the prescribed documents required by an AST agreement and did not protect his deposit either, as this was not required by the short-let agreement.

    Now, I would like to serve him a section 21 notice. But there's no physical AST contract in place. Furthermore, the tenant has stayed for more than two years and without a new agreement is deemed to be continuing on a 1 calendar month periodic basis (which is his payment period). Therefore, I have the following questions:

    1- Can I serve a valid section 21 now, without a physical AST at hand, if I protect his deposit and issue the prescribed information (i.e. how to rent guide, EPC, Gas Safety Certificate, etc.) before his notice is served?

    2- Do I have to serve him a 2 months notice, or can I just give him 1 month to vacate the property based on his current periodic tenancy?

    To complicate matters further, I must mention that the property in question was licensable as a HMO, but not licensed, for a period of time. When I first served him notice, he sought legal advise from the Citizen's Advice Bureau and was told the notice is not valid. However, all other tenants have since vacated the property and this single occupant remains. Will my notice be valid right now, as the property is no longer licensable with a single occupant.

    I look forward to your kind advice.

    Kindest regards

    Exactly how did the contract say that it wasn't an AST. From the sounds of things it was always assured; words that purport to change that have no effect if the reality is that it is for a person's main home and it is not an excluded tenancy, and not a genuine licence.

    Saying that it is not an AST may mean it is a simple assured tenancy, with enhanced security of tenure (no section 21 option) and restrictions on rent increases.

    Unless it qualifies as an excluded tenancy, this should should have been formulated as an AST in the first place, to avoid giving an AT. ASTs can be for less than six months, even though possession proceedings, under section 21, cannot be started before then. I don't think anyone will believe this is a genuine holiday let.

    Your link is a link to the reader's Google drive, not to yours.


      1 - If it is an AST, you would have to return the deposit before serving notice under s21. If your original tenancy agreement specifically said that it wasn't an AST, it isn't an AST and won't have become one. If the agreement is not an AST, section 21 is not available.

      2 - You have to give the tenant 2 months notice.

      If the property was meant to be licensable and wasn't, the tenant can claim back rent paid for that period.
      When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
      Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).


        If you didn't serve a GSC before he moved in, a s21 will be impossible now


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