Section 21 Notice (Accelerated Possession)

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Wales England

Last updated 25 March 2022 - reversion to pre-covid notice periods

What is a Section 21 notice?

When you have entered into an assured shorthold tenancy with your tenant, you may recover possession of the property from them by using the notice procedure set out in Section 21 of the Housing Act 1988. It is not available to any other form of tenancy agreement.

For most landlords, serving a Section 21 notice will be the most common way for them to begin the process of ending a tenancy. This route to possession is simpler than serving a Section 8 notice as it does not require you attend a court hearing. It also does not require you to provide a reason why you are seeking possession. However there are a number of procedural requirements that you must have complied with if you wish to use this type of notice to regain possession of a property.

This page contains a number of resources to ensure NRLA members can confidently seek possession. Along with detailed guidance on completing the form, the page provides information on the requirements before service and answers a number of frequently asked questions about Section 21 notices.

How much notice was required for a Section 21 during the coronavirus measures?

During the coronavirus pandemic, 

  • Notices served between 27 March and 23 July 2020 required at least three months notice to be valid.
  • Notices served between 24 July 2020 and 24 March 2022 in Wales, required at least six months' notice. 

Shorter notice periods were available for Section 8 notices where at least one of the grounds for possession relates to anti-social behaviour. The NRLA recommends consulting with a solicitor before seeking possession on the basis of anti-social behaviour.

Members only

Making a mistake when filling out the Section 21 notice can be an intensely frustrating experience for landlords and agents. Often the first time a landlord will find out they have made a mistake on the form is months later when they are refused possession because of the error.

To help minimise the risk of rejection, the NRLA has produced a number of resources for our members. This includes sample section 21 notices for use in Wales, completion instructions providing guidance on completing and serving the form and how to ensure sufficient evidence of correct service.

We have also produced detailed guidance for our members on the requirements that must be met before serving a Section 21 notice as well as answering a number of frequently asked questions about the use of a Section 21 notice.

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