Rental Reform Bill moves forward in Parliament – what’s changing for Landlords and Tenants?

Developments are underway in the heart of Westminster as the Rental Reform bill has passed its Third Reading in the House of Commons. This marks a significant step forward in reshaping the rental landscape. But what exactly does this mean for tenants and landlords alike? Read on below for a detailed breakdown of the notable amendments and what lies ahead for this legislation.

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What’s changing?

Among the key amendments is a provision that governs when tenants can serve notice after entering into an assured tenancy. Under this amendment, tenants will be unable to serve a two-month notice to quit until four months into the tenancy. This effectively establishes a six-month period during which tenants cannot terminate their lease unless there are extenuating circumstances, such as serious disrepair left unaddressed by the landlord.

At first glance, this may seem like a drastic departure from the original draft of the bill, which allowed tenants to serve notice at any point during the tenancy. However, in today’s rental market, where tenants are increasingly opting for longer fixed-term leases to protect themselves from market rent fluctuations, this amendment offers a more balanced approach. Longer fixed terms mean more stability for tenants in terms of rent costs.

Will tenants see any tangible benefits in terms of cost of living under the new law?

Only time will tell. While landlords will be permitted to propose rent increases once a year, similar to the current law regarding statutory periodic tenancies, there will be some tightening of the rules surrounding this process under the new legislation.

Delving deeper into the amendments

Another significant amendment involves the long-awaited abolition of no-fault (Section 21) notices. While this has been promised by the government for some time and is a major focus of housing campaign groups, its implementation will now be preceded by a review of the court system’s capacity to handle the expected increase in possession cases once the bill becomes law.

What’s next?

With the bill having completed its stages in the House of Commons, it now progresses to the House of Lords for further consideration. Here, the Lords will review any amendments made in the Commons before engaging in a back-and-forth debate until agreement is reached. Only then will the bill receive Royal Assent and officially become law.

However, the implementation of the bill won’t happen overnight. Like all new legislation, it will come into effect on a commencement date, with certain aspects being rolled out in phases. Additionally, reviews of the court system’s readiness to handle the changes will be conducted before the complete abolition of Section 21 notices.

When will it happen?

As for when we can expect these changes to take effect, that remains uncertain. The government is committed to pushing the bill through before the dissolution of Parliament ahead of a general election, the date of which is still to be determined.

We’ll have to wait and see what happens, as there’s plenty of time for things to change before the next election or potential change in party. In the meantime, remember that our team of property experts is here to provide guidance and knowledge to navigate any developments that arise.

The Government white papers are all available to read on the website along with updates on Parliament. If you have any questions or worries about your rental property, a member of our expert team would be happy to advise where they can. You can call us on 01344 843000 or email us.


If you are thinking of moving in or out of the area, make sure you take a look at our amazing catalogue of properties for sale in Virginia Water and the surrounding areas. If you’d like to speak to someone about properties to let in Virginia Water, a member of our expert team would be happy to help. You can call us on 01344 843000 or email us. You can also follow us on FacebookTwitterInstagram, and LinkedIn.