Guide to providing a landlords name and address (Section 48, Section 3 notice)

Introduction

Landlords and agents can be required to provide a specific name or address in a number of different circumstances. As these circumstances are covered by different legislation, some will require the landlord's name and their real address, while others only require an address in England or Wales.

On this page we will discuss the different notices, such as Section 3 or Section 48 notices, demands for rent, and responding to a tenant's request for information on which addresses are required and when they should be issued.

Section 48 Notice - providing an address for the service of notices

Section 48 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1987 requires that a tenant is provided with an address where notices may be served on the landlord.

Is the landlord's name required?

No.

Does it have to include the landlord's home address?

This address must be in England and Wales and can be the address of a managing agent rather than the address of the landlord.

What happens if the Section 48 notice is not served?

As the courts see it, rent cannot be demanded from a tenant unless they have an address and name to which they can pay the rent. Therefore, as a landlord you cannot demand rent from the tenant if you have failed to issue them with notice of your address. However, once the Section 48 notice has been served (and counts as served) then all rent becomes lawfully due immediately. As such you can require the backdated rent arrears in full.

When should I serve this notice?

Normally you will not need to serve this notice. A Section 48 notice is usually included within the tenancy agreement and this is the easiest way to ensure that all tenants receive the notice. Where a Section 48 is not included within the tenancy agreement or you have an oral agreement, you should serve a notice under Section 48. The tenant will then become liable to pay rent.

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Section 3 Notice - informing the tenant of a transfer of interest in the property

A section 3 notice must be served on all tenants where the original landlord transfers their interest in the property to someone else. This must be done by the new landlord within two months of the property transfer or, if rent is payable quarterly or more, no later than the next rent due date.

Does a Section 3 notice require the landlord's name?

Yes.

Does it have to include the landlord's home address?

Yes, unlike a Section 48 notice, the new landlord must give the tenant their home address on the section 3 notice.

What happens if I do not serve the Section 3 notice?

The old landlord remains liable for any breach of contract that may occur on the property and the new landlord can be prosecuted and fined up to £2,500.

Where can I get a Section 3 notice?

If your conveyancer does not provide this for you, then you can contact the Landlord Advice Team and we can provide an example Section 3 notice for you if you are a full member of the RLA.

Written demands for rent - Section 47

Confusingly for landlords, section 47 and section 48 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1987 have different rules regarding the landlord's name and address. Section 47 governs demands for rent in writing from a landlord.

Do I have to include my name in written demands for rent as a landlord?

Yes

Do I have to include my actual address in written demands for rent as a landlord?

Yes

What is the penalty if I don't do this?

Any service charges due as part of the demand will not be due until the landlord's name and address are given.

Written request for the landlord's name and address

Many landlords use an agent as they do not want the tenant to know their name or address. A landlord is not required to put their name or address on a tenancy, however if a tenant makes a request in writing to the agent or the person who last received or demanded the rent, then they must provide it.

How long does my agent have to provide this information?

They must respond in writing within 21 days of receiving the written request from the tenant.

Does it have to be my home address?

It can be either your home address or business address if you have one. If your properties are owned by a limited company then you may use the registered office of the company.

The agent's address is unsuitable for this.

I am set up as a limited company. Is there any way in which the tenant may find out my real name?

Yes. The tenant may make a request in writing for the names and addresses of all the directors. This request can be made to the company, agent or the person who last collected/demanded the rent. After this request has been made the person must respond in writing with the information within 21 days.

What is the penalty for ignoring these requests?

A penalty of up to £2,500 can be issued for failing to provide this information. This can apply to the agent or landlord depending on who is responsible for the failure to respond.

Filling out claim forms for possession, damages, etc

While an agent can fill out a number of forms such as Section 21, once the landlord is applying to court then the agent cannot sign or provide their address as a proxy for the landlord.

Where right of audience is required to attend hearings or start a claim, the landlord must put their own name and address, or employ a solicitor to represent them at a hearing. If this is not done then the courts are likely to dismiss the case and waste the landlord's time and money.

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