This is a continuation of "Renting Homes (Wales) Act 2016, Part 1...
3. All properties must be safe
Electrical safety and smoke alarms have historically only been a legal requirement for HMO’s. However this will now be a requirement for all rental properties. Landlords must ensure properties are fit for human habitation (FFHH). This will include, for instance, electrical safety testing and ensuring working smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors are fitted. Carbon monoxide alarms are only currently mandatory for solid fuel such as log burners, however they will become mandatory for all properties with gas appliances and boilers. The duties on landlords relating to FFHH can be found (https://gov.wales/fitness-homes-human-habitation-guidance-landlords-html) In addition, rent will not be payable for any period during which the dwelling is not fit for human habitation.
You must keep the structure and exterior of the property in repair and keep installations for the supply of water, gas or electricity, for sanitation, for space heating, and hot water in repair and proper working order.
If a landlord issued a ‘no fault’ possession notice in response to a request for repair (commonly known as retaliatory eviction), the court can refuse to make a possession order and it will not be possible to issue a further ‘no fault’ notice until 6 months later.
4. Anti social behaviour
A fair and consistent approach for both landlord and contract holders is being proposed. As yet, there is little detail on the specifics but we will update you as soon as we have more information.
There is going to be much greater provision for succession in contracts, with a ‘priority’ and ‘reserve’ successor being able to be named, such as a spouse and family member. For example, Mr and Mrs Bloggs live in a rental property with their adult son, Joe. Under the current tenancy agreement, if it was originally created under Mr Bloggs name and he decided to leave the property, the tenancy would end and have to be created under Mrs Bloggs or Joe’s name. Under the new occupation contract, if Mr Bloggs leaves the property the contract would continue with Mrs Bloggs automatically. And if she decided to leave the property too, Joe Bloggs would have a right take on the contract after her.
6. Abandoned Property
There is provision within this Act for Landlords to repossess an abandoned property without needing a court order, after serving a four week warning notice and carrying out investigations to satisfy yourself the property is abandoned. This should make repossession of an abandoned property easier.