The Renting Homes (Wales) Act 2016 comes into force 1 December 2022

Toby Weiss

Toby Weiss

Content Marketing Manager at Reapit

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The Renting Homes (Wales) Act 2016 is due to come into force from 1 December 2022. The act is the biggest change to housing law in Wales for decades and will change the way tenants and landlords rent their properties.

Who is affected by the new law?

All social and private tenants will see some changes:

  • in the way their contracts are provided
  • in the way their homes are maintained
  • to how they communicate with their landlords

All social and private landlords, including those who rent their properties through management companies or agents, will need to:

  • comply with the new law
  • make the necessary updates to their properties and paperwork

What does the new law mean for landlords and tenants?

Tenants

Under the new law, tenants and licencees will become ‘contract-holders’. Tenancy agreements will be replaced with ‘occupation contracts’. The new law is intended to make renting easier and provide greater security for tenants.

For contract-holders this will mean:

  • Receiving a written contract setting out your rights and responsibilities.
  • An increase in the ‘no fault’ notice period from two to six months.
  • Greater protection from eviction.
  • Improved succession rights, these set out who has a right to continue to live in a dwelling, for example after the current tenant dies.
  • More flexible arrangements for joint contract-holders, making it easier to add or remove others to an occupation contract.

Landlords

For landlords this will mean:

  • A simpler system, with two types of contract: ‘Secure’ for the social rented sector and ‘Standard’ for the private rented sector.
  • Ensuring homes are fit for human habitation (FFHH). This will include, electrical safety testing and ensuring working smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors are fitted.
  • Abandoned properties can be repossesed without needing a court order.

It’s important that landlords and tenants know how the law changes will affect them. Therefore, the Welsh Government has provided the following guidance:

Landlords: housing law is changing (Renting Homes)

Tenants: housing law is changing (Renting Homes)

 

Additional Resources

Legislation: Renting Homes (Wales) Act 2016

Legislation: Renting Homes (Amendment) (Wales) Act 2021

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