Eviction notices from private landlords

Coronavirus update

Evictions are paused during the coronavirus outbreak.

From 24 August 2020 the courts start to deal with evictions again.

Most private renters cannot be evicted without a court order.

When written notice is needed

Your landlord should usually give you notice in writing. This applies even if you don't have a written tenancy agreement.

How much notice you get depends on the:

  • type of tenancy 
  • reasons your landlord wants you to leave

Use our tenancy checker if you're not sure what type of tenancy you have.


Your landlord still normally needs to give you notice if you live with them. This doesn't have to be in writing unless your agreement says so.  

They should give you reasonable notice to leave. As you are an excluded occupier your landlord won't need a court order to evict you.

Section 21 notices

A section 21 notice is the most common way for a landlord to end an assured shorthold tenancy. Most private renters have assured shorthold tenancies. 

A section 21 notice must give you at least

  • 2 months if given before 26 March 2020
  • 3 months if given on or after 26 March 2020

Your landlord doesn't need to give a reason why they want you to leave if they use the section 21 eviction process

Section 8 notices

A section 8 notice can be used by a private landlord who wants to evict an assured shorthold tenant or an assured tenant for a legal reason or 'ground'. 

The notice period is 3 months if you're given a section 8 on or after 26 March 2020.

If you were given a notice before 26 March, the notice period was either 2 weeks, 4 weeks or 2 months depending which ground your landlord included.

Your landlord has to prove a legal reason for eviction in court and you may be able to stop a section 8 eviction

Notice to quit

Your landlord can give you notice to quit to end your tenancy if you are an occupier with basic protection.

This includes:

  • some property guardians
  • students in university owned halls of residence
  • if you live in the same house as your landlord but don't share living accommodation

They can do this if you have a periodic or rolling agreement.

A notice to quit must:

  • give you at least 4 weeks' notice
  • end on the first or last day of a rental period
  • contain certain legal information, including where to get advice

The new rules extending most notices to 3 months don't apply to occupiers with basic protection.

Once the notice has ended, your landlord needs to get a court order to evict you. 

Regulated tenancies

This type of notice can also be used to end a regulated or protected tenancy.

If your landlord has already given you this notice in the past, they won't usually need to give you a new one.

If you get a notice on or after 26 March 2020 then notice period is 3 months. 

You have strong rights if you're a regulated or protected tenant. In most cases you can only be evicted if both:

Last updated 31 July 2020 | © Shelter

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