- On this day 1990 Wrecking cranes began tearing down the Berlin Wall at the Brandenburg Gate
“Today has been a day dropped out of June into April.”
― L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Windy Poplars – it is beautiful in Glasgow at the moment,, but I know that rain is forecast for the afternoon, so typical day in Scotland!
What a week we have had. Team GPL have all had their first doze of the vaccine, with varying side effects, but as the literature says, having the virus would be much worse.
On Monday 26th April, like most people I was refreshing the Scottish Government website for updates and once we have been given the new guidance I shall pass that on.
Hopefully you know that Monday is a bank holiday and we are closing down our laptops. Last bank holiday meant I could not transfer any funds for days, but that was possibly more to do with Clydesdale bank becoming Virgin money, so fingers crossed the transactions will all process smoothly.
How would you like Boris Johnston to be your landlord?
It has been reported that Prime Minister Boris Johnson is to rent out his cottage in Oxfordshire for a cool £4,250 a month.
Boris Johnson and his ex-wife Marina Wheeler bought the cottage in 2003 for £690,000.
Described as a “lovely Grade II listed 4 bed family home”, the property is located in North Weston, in close proximity to the town of Thame and it offers lovely walks with uninterrupted countryside views.
CREDIT: STRUTT & PARKER
The 3,100 square foot cottage is let on an unfurnished basis and has a minimalist decor of white walls and mahogany flooring.
It benefits from a heated swimming pool, tennis court and maintained gardens.
A separate annex, described as a garden room, can also be found there. Converted from a barn, the self-contained building has a small kitchen and features exposed brick and a fireplace.
The £1.2m property is listed with local estate agents Strutt & Parker, and is available to rent for a minimum term of 12 months.
CREDIT: STRUTT & PARKER
CREDIT: STRUTT & PARKER
Prospective tenants with pets are welcome to apply as according to the property listing, they will be considered for the tenancy. It is not clear though if Boris Johnson is using the new model tenancy agreement promoted by the government back in February, which encourages landlords to allow pets in their rental properties in most circumstances.
CREDIT: STRUTT & PARKER
Private Rented Tenancy agreement
Which smoothly links to the Scottish Private Tenancy Agreement (PRT). I know, it was a thin link, but I saw the above article on Citylets, and after closing my open mouth at the rental amount, thought that it would be a chance to reiterate that the tenancy agreement in Scotland is not the same as the lease agreement in England as the laws of land are different and the tenancy agreements also distinct.
On the 1st December 2017 the Scottish Private Rented Tenancy agreement became the mandatory lease agreement to be signed in the private rented sector. This meant that if any changes, such as rent increases or extensions, were made to a short assured tenancy it would become a PRT and best practice would be to sign a new lease. All new lease agreement would need to be a PRT.
The biggest difference between the Short Assured Tenancy (SAT) and the Private Rented Tenant (PRT) is that the PRT only has a start date. When this was first introduced there was a huge concern about the tenants not having a fixed period of time to commit to the property and in June 2018 I remember that the market became flooded with student properties. Why would a student, or the guarentour who was paying the rent, keep an empty property during non term time when there was no need to? This meant that the ratio of student: professional tenants we had at Glasgow Property Letting shifted dramatically, and as landlords you will remember we were able to increase the rents for the professional market, which meant some properties had a bit of a facelift and freshen up.
Again in March 2019 this happened to the remaining student properties that we had. This meant in 2020 when the universities closed and the world changed Glasgow Property Letting did not have the amount of tenants giving notice that other agents did.
The notice period a tenant has to give with the PRT is 28 days. This is 28 days at any time and the rent due to the end of the tenancy would be worked out on a daily basis. The tenant does not need to give a reason why they wish to vacate, although we do try and find out in case there is an issue with the property that only when you live there you would know about.
This has also meant that we as agents need to be particular when finding a tenant for you. Finding a good long term tenant is important, which is why we have never operated on a first come first served approach. We talk to the prospective tenants, get a history, find out who they are and what their plans are. However as letting agents the Scottish government have said that we can NOT directly ask a prospective tenant how long they will stay in the property.
The notice a landlord needs to provide is varied depending on the reason and evidence needs to be provided. The grounds the notice can be served on are clearer than with the SAT, and in non pandemic times often quicker, however due to the pandemic, until September 2021 there are no mandatory grounds for eviction.
Notice to leave during COVID-19
- Scottish Government have been clear that no landlord should evict a tenant because they have suffered financial hardship due to COVID-19:
- landlords are expected to be flexible with tenants facing financial hardship and signpost them to the sources of financial support available.
Pre-pandemic, and hopefully where we will go back to there were sets of grounds for eviction.
8 mandatory grounds
- Landlord intends to sell
- Property to be sold by lender
- Landlord intends to refurbish
- Landlord intends to live in property
- Landlord intends to use for non-residential purpose
- Property required for religious purpose
- Tenant not occupying let property
- Tenant has relevant conviction
8 discretionary grounds
- Family member intends to live in property
- Tenant no longer in need of supported accommodation
- Breach of tenancy agreement
- Anti-social behaviour
- Association with person who has relevant conviction or engaged in relevant anti-social behaviour
- Landlord has ceased to be registered
- HMO licence has been revoked
- Overcrowding statutory notice served on landlord
2 “mixed” grounds
- Not an employee (mandatory if apply for eviction order within 12 months of employment ceasing)
- Rent arrears (mandatory if tenant owed rent for three or more consecutive months and owes at least one month’s rent at start of day on which tribunal first considers case)
The Coronavirus (Scotland) Act 2020 protects tenants in Scotland from any eviction action for up to 6 months. This new legislation temporarily extends the amount of notice landlords must give when ending a tenancy In most cases landlords will now need to give tenants six months’ notice, unless they are ending the tenancy for particular reasons, including:
antisocial and criminal behaviour by the tenant – 28 days since 3 October 2020
where the landlord or their family need to move into the property – three months
The legislation also temporarily makes all grounds for eviction in the private rented sector discretionary If the tenant disputes the grounds of the notice the First-tier Tribunal (FtT) can use discretion taking all factors relating to the impact of COVID-19 in account, for both landlord and tenant, before deciding whether to issue an eviction order or not. This change ensures that the Tribunal will be able to use discretion and take all factors relating to the impact of Covid-19 has had on both the landlord and tenant into account before deciding whether to issue an eviction order or not.
Eviction Grounds Private Residential Tenancy
If landlord misleads tribunal into awarding eviction order, OR Tenant was misled into leaving property without eviction order Tribunal can award wrongful termination order requiring landlord to pay tenant up to six months’ rent. Could also jeopardise landlord registration status
When I had planned this email last week and spent the week tinkering with it, I realised that dialogue is often the easier way to explain things, so as always happy to talk over any of the thoughts you have about the private rented tenancy agreement.
Hopefully, we have a sunny long weekend, with restrictions easing allowing more freedom to enjoy time with family, friends and other loved ones,
Take care, stay safe and please send enquiries into firstname.lastname@example.org and one of the team will get back to you,
17 Elmbank Street
0141 221 3990
Registration number LARN1903009
VAT : 174415411
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