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14 October, 2021 Open access

Northern Ireland Communities Minister announces continuation of agreement with social sector landlords not to evict tenants on basis of Covid-19-related rent arrears

Voluntary agreement to continue until 4 May 2022 in line with extended protections for private sector tenants

Northern Ireland Communities Minister Deirdre Hargey has announced that a voluntary agreement with social sector landlords not to evict tenants on the basis of Covid-19-related rent arrears is to continue until 4 May 2022.

Thanking the Housing Executive and housing associations in Northern Ireland for their ongoing support for the 'no eviction' agreement that was put in place at the start of the pandemic, Ms Hargey said today -

'Whilst my hope is that we are making progress on the road to recovery, I know that the pandemic continues to create very challenging circumstances. For this reason, I believe it is premature to end the ‘no eviction’ agreement for Covid-19-related arrears at this time. I have asked the Housing Executive and housing associations to continue to honour this voluntary agreement until May 2022, in line with my recent decision to extend the emergency 12-week notice to quit period in the private rented sector.'

NB - in force from 29 September 2021, the Private Tenancies (Coronavirus Modifications) (No.2) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2021 (SR.No.242/2021) extend, from 30 September 2021 to 4 May 2022, the period where landlords are required to provide private tenants with a 12-week notice to quit period before seeking a court order to begin proceedings to evict.

For more information, see Hargey announces continuation of 'no eviction' agreement for Covid-19-related arrears in social housing sector from communities-ni.gov.uk