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Notice to Quit Periods to change from 5 May 2022

Drawing of person standing by front door. An eviction notice is pinned to the door.

Last week the Private Tenancies Bill passed its final stage and is waiting for royal assent. The only immediate change this will bring is to notice periods for private tenancies.

From May 5 2022 landlords will have to give

  • 4 weeks’ notice, if the tenant has lived in the property for less than 12 months
  • 8 weeks’ notice, if the tenant has lived in the property for more than 12 months but less than 10 years
  • 12 weeks’ notice, if the tenant has lived in the property for more than 10 years

From May 5 2022 tenants will have to give:

  • 4 weeks’ notice if the tenant has lived in the property for less than 10 years
  • 12 weeks’ notice if the tenant has lived in the property for more than 10 years

Notice periods will only follow this pattern if the bill receives Royal Assent by May 4. If it does not, the notice periods will go back to how they stood before emergency legislation changed them in 2020.

Future Changes to Notice to Quit

The Bill allows for longer notice to quit periods to be implemented in due course. These may range from

  • 8 weeks for tenancies of less than 12 months to
  • 7 months for tenancies of more than 8 years

These longer notice periods will not take effect until further regulations have been made. The regulations will likely include exceptions to these notice periods. Exceptions may be related to the tenant and may include:

  • substantial rent arrears
  • serious antisocial behaviour
  • certain criminal offences

Future Changes to Private Rented Sector

The Bill also contains a number of other changes that require further regulations before they come into force.

Making the Private Rented Sector Safer

The Bill gives the Assembly the power to make regulations to make changes around

  • fire, smoke and carbon monoxide detectors
  • minimum energy efficiency levels
  • electrical safety standards

Keeping Tenants Informed

The Bill gives the assembly the power to introduce regulations that will require landlords to give tenants:

  • information about the tenancy within 28 days of the tenancy starting
  • written receipts for all cash payments  

Affordability in the Private Rented Sector

The Assembly will have the power to make regulations about rent and deposits in the private rented sector. When these regulations are made

  • deposits will be capped to no more than the equivalent of 1 months’ rent
  • rent increases will be limited to once a year

Future Consultations

The Bill also imposes a duty on the Department of Communities to carry out a consultation on rent decrease and rent freeze within the next 6 months.

Find out more about the Private Tenancies Bill

These changes will be discussed at the Housing Advice Practitioners’ forum on Wednesday 30 March 2pm – 4pm. This is a free event for Housing Rights members. If you are interested in attending, contact Faith, our Practitioner Support Officer at faithw@housingrights.org.uk, or register here.

Training Sessions

Housing Rights will be providing training sessions to explain the key areas of the bill.  The training sessions will take place on

Book your place now.

Tagged In

Legislation, Regulation, Private Tenancies, Policy, NI Assembly, Adviser

This article was written on 25 March 2022. It should not be relied on as a statement of the current law or policy position. For help with housing issues please contact our helpline on 028 9024 5640 or use our online chat service at www.housingadviceNI.org.