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The Housing Act of 1988 section 21, stated that a minimum of two months notice must be served on a tenant.  In 1996 the Housing Act was amended slightly and under section 98 of the 1996 Housing Act it is stated that the notice must be served in writing.  If you need to go through the accelerated possession procedure proof of notice is required so you must give notice in writing.

Service of notice can occur at any time after the commencement of the tenancy.  Do not give notice before the tenancy has started!  However, you must allow the tenant to be in situ for a minimum of 6 months.

Ensure the format of the notice is correct (as below).  

All the tenants must be named on the notice especially in the case of sharers.  If you want to be really careful then serve each individual with notice.

Please note that the serving of notice varies according to the type of tenancy.

If notice is being served during the fixed term of the notice then you can do it in any form as long as you give the following details.

1. Name and Address of Tenants

2. Name and Address of Landlord or Landlords if there is more than one.

3. Address of the property which is being sought for possession.

4. Date the notice is served.

5. Date possession is required.

6. You must state that possession is being sought under the Housing Act 1988 section 21 (1) (b) or section 21 (4)(a) - Remember that if notice is being served during the fixed term of the tenancy then section 21 (1)(b) applies.

The best way to serve notice is to deliver it by hand or first class mail.  If you can, get the tenants to sign and return a copy to you.  

Periodic Tenancies:

These are tenancies that have gone past the fixed term and are now into "periods".  A period being the time the rent is paid.  i.e. every month or every 2 months etc.  Notice can be served on the tenants again you must give at least 2 months notice, but you must ensure that the notice period brings the tenancy to an end at the end of a rental period.  Therefore, if the rent is paid on the 25th of each month, ensure the notice will bring the tenancy to an end on the 25th of the month.  For example I receive rent from my tenants on the 25th of each month.  Today is the 30th.  I have to give 2 months notice and bring the tenancy to an end at the end of a rental period.  As I have just missed the 25th July I can give notice to the tenants for possession of the property on the 25th October 2001.  If I had thought about it I could have given notice to the tenants on the 20th of July and had the property back on the 25th September 2001.

Note if the rent is paid quarterly then you can only give notice to run out at the end of the quarter.

Always keep a copy of the notice served and of any covering letter.

Example of Format For Notice: please feel free to copy.

HOUSING ACT 1988, Section 21 (1)(b)

as amended by the HOUSING ACT 1996

Assured Shorthold Tenancy: Fixed Term

Notice Requiring Possession

(i) Name and address of tenant:     TO:



(ii) Name and address of landlord:  FROM:

(Note B)                                            OF:


I give you notice that I require possession of the dwelling house known as:


(iii) See Note C                                 ON:


(iv) Name and address to be              Landlord's Agent:

completed when notice is served       Address:

by agent.


A. On or after coming to an end of a fixed term assured shorthold tenancy, a court must make an order for possession if the landlord has given notice in writing

B. Where there are joint landlords, at least one of them must give this notice.

C. The length of the notice must be at least two months, and the notice must be given before or on the day on which the fixed term comes to an end.


1. If the tenant or licensee does not leave the dwelling, the landlord or licensor must get an order for possession from the court before the tenant or licensee can lawfully be evicted.  The landlord or licensor cannot apply for such an order before the notice to quit or notice to Determine has run out.

2. A tenant or licensee who does not know if he has any right to remain in possession after a notice to quit or notice to Determine runs out can obtain advice from a solicitor.  Help with all or part of the cost of legal advice and assistance may be available under the Legal Aid Scheme.  He should also be able to obtain information from a Citizens' Advice Bureau, a Housing Aid Centre or a rent officer.

SIGNED BY THE TENANTS__________________________________________DATED:_________


The above form must be used in full.  To print simply highlight all the text and select file, print, selection.




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