Although eviction proceedings resumed again at the end of September, the Governments’ new tiered lockdown system is halting parts of the process once again. Business Development Director, Jeni Browne, explains which tiers are affected and what this means for landlords.
After a six-month suspension due to the pandemic, eviction proceedings resumed in England and Wales on the 20th September 2020. Buy to let landlords who had been waiting for an eviction date just before the pandemic hit could finally reclaim their property and court proceedings for those who required them could resume.
However, in light of the new tier system, designed to contain high localised infection rates, the Members of the High Court Enforcement Officers Association have agreed with the Justice Secretary, Robert Buckland’s request to halt any evictions for those under Tier’s One or Two areas. It’s unclear whether this suspension will also include evictions involving anti-social behaviour and domestic abuse, which are currently exempt from the temporary six-month eviction notice period rules.
A significant difference with this postcode dependent ‘ban’, compared to the previous blanket suspension, is that court hearings for evictions can continue, meaning that tenants could still be evicted soon after the area returns to a Tier One. However, it’s unlikely this will happen before the start of the new year, especially as there is to be another suspension of evictions over the Christmas period: 11th December 2020 to 11th January 2021.
Wales has put a total hold on evictions during it’s 17-day ‘circuit-breaker’ lockdown, and like England has extended the six-month eviction notice period rules until the 31st March 2021.
During this challenging time, the National Residential Landlord Association (NRLA) still advise that where possible, landlords speak to tenants who are under financial difficulty due to the pandemic, to try and find a solution. Of course, we know that for many landlords who were experiencing challenges before the pandemic, this will be another frustrating delay.
If your tenants are struggling with rent and you’re concerned about keeping up with mortgage repayments, do get in touch as there are options which can alleviate some of the financial stress. Call 0345 345 6788 or email email@example.com today!