An image of a house
An image of a house

On Thursday 26 March, the government made some important announcements relating to housing during the COVID-19 crisis.

Renters

The government is now introducing a ban on evictions for several months during the coronavirus outbreak.

If you’ve had a notice of eviction from your landlord you should stay in your home. Renters who get a notice between 26 March 2020 and 30 September 2020 will be entitled to 3 months’ notice before their landlord can apply to court. This includes private, council, housing association and regulated tenants.

It isn’t yet clear whether evictions will still go ahead if your landlord has already applied to court. Many courts are adjourning or postponing eviction hearings up until June.

Remember, if you are struggling to pay your rent you should talk to your landlord about this straight away.

You can read the latest from the government on this here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/government-support-available-for-landlords-and-renters-reflecting-the-current-coronavirus-covid-19-outbreak.

You can find more about housing advice during coronavirus on the housing charity, Shelter’s website here: https://england.shelter.org.uk/housing_advice/coronavirus

Moving house

The government has urged people (both buyers and renters) not to move house while emergency stay-at-home measures are in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

The advice is that while there “is no need to pull out of transactions,” everyone needs to ensure they follow guidance to stay at home and away from others at all times.

If a property is vacant, people can continue with the transaction, although they must ensure they are following guidance on social distancing when moving house. (Although as far as I can see this would be pretty difficult to do)! But if the house is occupied the government is encourage all parties to do all they can to agree alternative dates to move.

The government’s advice on moving house can be found in full here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/government-advice-on-home-moving-during-the-coronavirus-covid-19-outbreak.

I appreciate that the uncertainty around housing is causing a lot of anxiety for residents during this difficult and fast-moving situation. I will do my best to provide updates where I can on this.

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