Yesterday (17 January 2018), a new version of the How To Rent Guide was published by the now called Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government (MHCLG).
It is essential any new tenant or if a renewal is granted in England, that the new version is provided. Where a renewal is done, if the guide has changed since the first one given with the tenancy, it must always be provided again (but doesn’t need providing again if it’s not changed). It also appears that if the tenancy goes statutory periodic after the fixed term, it will need providing again (but only if it’s changed). If you’re using the Guild tenancy agreements, providing again after the fixed term is not necessary because our agreements don’t go statutory periodic. See our article about giving the How to Rent Guide for more detailed information.
A failure to provide the How to Rent Guide is a defence to the service of a section 21 notice and renders the notice invalid if not provided before service.
Our Tenancy Builder has been updated earlier this morning and all the tenancy agreements produced incorporate the new version of the guide.
The changes to the guide appear to be relatively minor and include:
- the reference to the London Rental Standard has been removed (as it’s been abolished)
- a number of links have been updated or changed to different destinations
- the reference to linking to the How to Rent Guide web page as a means of providing has been changed to providing it as a PDF attachment in an email, indicating a simple link to the website is not sufficient – note: consent must be obtained from the tenant first if it’s to be supplied electronically.
It’s highly likely that the guide will change again this year as there are number of legislative changes in the pipeline so you should look out for this.
The new guide can be downloaded from https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/how-to-rent.