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Eviction of housing association tenants

If you are a tenant of a housing association and threatened with eviction, speak to an adviser immediately. Whatever type of tenancy you have, a housing association should only evict its tenants as a last resort.

Even if the bailiffs are on the way, it’s never too late to get help.


Emergency laws mean that most housing association tenants in Wales who get an eviction notice on or after 29 September 2020 are entitled to 6 months’ notice before their landlord can apply to court. This includes assured and assured shorthold (starter) tenants.

Court proceedings for eviction were suspended for a time but the courts have now been able to start to deal with evictions again.

If your landlord had started court proceedings to evict you before 3 August 2020 and wants to continue the proceedings they will need to send a notice to you and to the court. This is called a ‘Reactivation Notice’. In the notice they must give information to the court about the impact coronavirus has had on you and your family.

You will be contacted by the court if this happens and you will be told if there is to be a court hearing. The hearing might be dealt with by video or audio link.

You should still pay your rent while you are waiting for a court hearing. Make sure you tell your landlord about the affect that coronavirus has had on you and your family. Do this in an email or text and keep a copy so that you can show this to the court if asked.

If you are struggling to pay your rent, see our advice.

The steps involved in eviction

To evict you from a tenancy, the housing association must take 3 steps:

  1. send you notice to leave
  2. apply to the court for a possession order
  3. ask the court to send bailiffs to evict you.

Before starting court action to evict you, the housing association must follow the rules set out in a special pre-action protocol.

The rules on eviction are different depending on what type of tenancy you have. Most housing association tenants have assured tenancies, but you could also have a secure, assured shorthold (starter) or demoted tenancy. Ask your housing association if you are not sure what type of tenant you are.

Can I defend the possession claim?

If you believe that:

  • the housing association is wrong in what they say either in the notice, or in the court papers, or
  • the notice does not comply with the rules, or
  • the housing association has not followed the pre-action protocol, or
  • that in all the circumstances it would not be reasonable for you to be evicted,

you may have grounds to defend the claim. This will depend on what type of tenancy you have and you should get advice immediately from an adviser.

We are sorry that we cannot provide this information in Welsh, however if you would like to speak to an adviser in Welsh please contact 08000 495 495.

Phone an adviser

If you have a housing problem, call our expert housing advice helpline
08000 495 495

Email an adviser

If you have a non-urgent problem and would like to speak to an adviser
email us

Pre-action eviction rules

Before starting court action to evict you, the housing association must follow the rules set out in a special pre-action protocol.

Notice of eviction

The first step a housing association must take to evict you is to give you a written notice.

Court orders

If you haven’t left by the time the notice expires, your housing association will usually have to apply for an order from the county court telling you to leave. This is known as a possession order.

Grounds for eviction

The housing association might have to prove legal reasons (known as grounds) to evict you.

This page was last updated on: November 18, 2020

Shelter Cymru acknowledges the support of Shelter in allowing us to adapt their content. The information contained on this site is updated and maintained by Shelter Cymru and only gives general guidance on the law in Wales. It should not be regarded or relied upon as a complete or authoritative statement of the law.

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