A Decision to Please Landlords and Letting Agents

28th February 2014

A Decision to Please Landlords and Letting Agents

image (82)

Landlords and letting agents should welcome a recent court decision which resolves the previous uncertainty as to which type of section 21 notice should be served upon a tenant at the end of a tenancy.

In the recent case of Spencer v Taylor [2013] EWCA Civ 1600 the Court of Appeal has made clear the type of notice to be used where a fixed term Assured Shorthold Tenancy (AST) has ended and the tenant remains in occupation under a periodic tenancy.

Prior to this case there was a question as to which of the 2 types of section 21 notice should be served. The practical difference between the 2 types of notice is that a notice under section 21(4) (Type A Notice) must expire on the last day of a tenancy period specifying that possession is required after that day, whereas a notice under section 21(1) (Type B Notice) does not have to expire on a particular date, it simply requires the landlord to give the tenant 2 months notice and can expire on any date.

The problems encountered by landlords, letting agents and solicitors to date have invariably arisen as a result of an incorrect expiry date within the s.21 notice.

In this recent case Lord Justice Lewinson held that so long as a tenancy was granted for a fixed term, a Type B Notice can be served whether it is during the fixed term, or the subsequent periodic part of the tenancy.

This means that a Type A Notice will now only be used where the tenancy was granted as a periodic tenancy all along.

Lord Justice Lewinson, who presided over the case, went on to provide further guidance in respect of the form of the Type A Notice. In particular he held that even where the date within the notice is incorrect, where the notice also contains a saving formula which confirms that the notice will expire at the end of the period of the tenancy that falls after 2 months of the date of the notice, the notice will be deemed to be valid.

The decision should make service of notices easier and means there is far less scope for an error to invalidate the notice and prevent the landlord regaining possession of its property.

At Gotelee we have the experience to assist with any enquiries relating to tenancies, the drafting and service of notices and possession proceedings, usually on a competitive fixed fee basis. For more information contact Holly Sadler, our Solicitor specialising in Property Disputes.

Blog Posts

What not to forget as BREXIT progresses


The Health & Safety Executive website informs us that in preparation for BREXIT the…

Read More
Upcoming Events

Managing the workforce in 2019


If you employ staff or have responsibility for HR, Gotelee Solicitor’s annual employment law…

Read More
News Posts

Put me ‘on hold’ please…


Gotelee Solicitors has devised a unique way to support young, local musicians and improve…

Read More


"This is by far the go-to firm for any issues. You are made to feel valued from the outset and they are so confident in what they do. Wouldn't recommend any other. Thank you Hugh and Max."

- Ros Jones

"We were very pleased to have Jade as our solicitor, the service was excellent and we felt kept in the loop which minimised stress"

- CT

"Prompt, helpful, polite and very professional service"


"Domini was very fast and efficient in carrying out her work for me - she was also very good at explaining things to me"


"I would like to say thank you for your help, support and guidance over the last two and a half years. Obviously should I need further assistance in the future I shall not hesitate to call you guys."


"We found Rachel Dawson outstanding, polite, professional and caring."


"“ This is the second time we have used Tracey for the conveyancing to buy our new home. She is always completely approachable, she has helped us along the way with advice and useful tips that has helped lessen the stress. We have complete confidence in her and would not hesitate to recommend her to our friends and family”.  - Peter Dawes, Cater Dawes Financial Planning "


"I don't think this house sale would have pulled together without Jo's determination and expertise. Excellent!"

- MT

"The ease that we could access and speak to Pat Smith - Thank you"


"Jade Shelton was absolutely fantastic!! Professional and proactive at all times."

- JH

Please select preferred method of contact

* We will only contact you by telephone if you select this as primary form of contact. All web enquiries will be stored on our website for 30 days.