Form 4 questions

I want to increase the rent. Im using the openrent contract. Tenant wont agree willingly so I am going to use a form 4. I’ve read open rents article on how to do this. However I still have a few questions. I’m hoping you guy can help.

Firstly notice period…

Is the notice period to increase the rent for a periodic tenancy using form 4 at least a month ie a month and a day is fine? Its just I note that the period for notice to leave is 2 months as below.

You can end the tenancy with two months written notice and the tenant can do so with 1 months.

Secondly can I ask for a realistic market rent or does it need to be an area average (which presumably includes social housing). If I have a couple of valuations from estate agents is that enough?

Thank you!!

A months notice is fine. I always give a little more, but its not necessary. When comparing your rents across the local market, you need only take account of the PRS properties as social housing is not readily available to the tenant.

I normally give the heads up a couple of months ahead and a few words as to why … inflation , cost of living, market rate. Rarely if ever have tenants baulked. I do it in writing. If your tenant refuses and the increase is fair then maybe you have the wrong tenant. But getting any tenant out today who ignores the section 21 -it will be a long haul and expensive

Thank you both! I’m desperately trying to avoid evictions.

A few more questions.

I am thinking I will deliver the form by email. Is this OK? The openrrent contract says they agree to receiving notices by email.

The form needs signing. Do I need to do this by hand and scan it or can I just type in my name assuming electronic delivery?

The contract is In my madden name but does that mean the form needs to be signed in my madden name or my married name? Would signing both hurt in anyway?

Thank you

If you have prior agreement for email notices then sending by email is probably fine, but I cant recall if the Govt forms specify methods of service. You should check.

You can sign as Jennifer x (nee y) with no problem.

Thank you!

Ok, sorry, one more question. I have read and read over the form 4. I’m pretty bright but its tying me in knots. Honestly think its amongst the worst written form I’ve ever seen!

The below is directly from the form. Along with the guidance notes.

What on earth is the answer to part 3?? Is it the date the contract became periodic. The same as answer4? A month before? I cant even find a filled out example on the internet.

My answer to part for is the next rent payment date plus one month.

3 The first rent increase date after 11th February 2003 is …

(see note 11 below)

4 The starting date for the new rent will be 14th November 2022…

(see notes 14 to 18 below)

Guidance notes for landlords on how to complete the notice

You can complete this notice in ink or arrange for it to be printed.

This notice should be used when proposing a new rent under an assured periodic tenancy (including an assured shorthold periodic tenancy) of premises situated in England. There is a different notice (Form No 5–Landlord’s or Licensor’s Notice proposing a new rent or licence fee under an Assured Agricultural Occupancy of premises situated in England) for proposing a new rent or licence fee for an assured agricultural occupancy of premises situated in England.

Do not use this notice if the tenancy agreement contains a term allowing rent increases, or there is some other basis such as a separate agreement with the tenant for raising the rent. Any provision you rely on needs to be binding on the tenant. Legal advice should be sought if there is any doubt on this score.

You need to use a different form to propose a rent increase for a statutory periodic tenancy (the first exception mentioned in note 17) if you are seeking to adjust rent solely because of a proposed change of terms under section 6(2) of the Housing Act 1988. Seek legal advice if you think this may apply to you. You can obtain the form headed Notice proposing different terms for a Statutory Periodic Tenancy from the First-tier Tribunal or a legal stationer.

Unless the tenancy is a new one, or one of the exceptions mentioned in note 17 applies, you must insert in paragraph 3 of the notice the first date after 11th February 2003, on which rent is proposed to be, or was, increased under this statutory notice procedure. That date determines the date that you can specify in paragraph 4 of the notice. See also note 16.

You should enter in each of the boxes in the second and third columns of the table in paragraph 5 either “nil” or the amount of the existing or proposed charge. You should only enter amounts for council tax and water charges where the tenant does not pay these charges directly. You should only enter fixed service charges which are payable by the tenant in accordance with a term or condition which specifies that these charges will be included in the rent for the tenancy. Only enter an amount for service charges where the tenant has agreed to pay a fixed sum. Do not include in the table any variable service charge, ie a service charge within the meaning of section 18 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985, where the whole or part of the sum payable by the tenant varies or may vary according to costs.

You or your agent (someone acting on your behalf) must sign and date this notice. If there are joint landlords, each landlord must sign unless one signs on behalf of the rest with their agreement. The signature does not have to be hand-written if, for instance, the form is being printed or if you wish to use a laser or autosignature.

When the proposed new rent can start

The date in paragraph 4 of the notice must comply with the three requirements of section 13(2) of the Housing Act 1988, as amended by the Regulatory Reform (Assured Periodic Tenancies) (Rent Increases) Order 2003.

The first requirement, which applies in all cases, is that a minimum period of notice must be given before the proposed new rent can take effect. That period is:

one month for a tenancy which is monthly or for a lesser period, for instance weekly or fortnightly;

six months for a yearly tenancy;

in all other cases, a period equal to the length of the period of the tenancy - for example, three months in the case of a quarterly tenancy.

The second requirement applies in most cases (but see note 17 for two exceptions):

(a) the starting date for the proposed new rent must not be earlier than 52 weeks after the date on which the rent was last increased using this statutory notice procedure or, if the tenancy is new, the date on which it started, unless

(b) that would result in an increase date falling one week or more before the anniversary of the date in paragraph 3 of the notice, in which case the starting date must not be earlier than 53 weeks from the date on which the rent was last increased.

This allows rent increases to take effect on a fixed day each year where the period of a tenancy is less than one month. For example, the rent for a weekly tenancy could be increased on, say, the first Monday in April. Where the period of a tenancy is monthly, quarterly, six monthly or yearly, rent increases can take effect on a fixed date, for example, 1st April.

  • The two exceptions to the second requirement, which apply where a statutory tenancy has followed on from an earlier tenancy, are:

where the tenancy was originally for a fixed term (for instance, 6 months), but continues on a periodic basis (for instance, monthly) after the term ends; and

where the tenancy came into existence on the death of the previous tenant who had a regulated tenancy under the Rent Act 1977.

In these cases the landlord may propose a new rent at once. However, the first and third requirements referred to in notes 15 and 18 must still be observed.

The third requirement, which applies in all cases, is that the proposed new rent must start at the beginning of a period of the tenancy. For instance, if the tenancy is monthly, and started on the 20th of the month, rent will be payable on that day of the month, and a new rent must begin then, not on any other day of the month. If the tenancy is weekly, and started, for instance, on a Monday, the new rent must begin on a Monday.

Surely, you are not expecting anyone to read all of that?


Paragraph 3 and Paragraph have to be at least one month (plus time for service) and MUST end on the last day of the periodic contract. So the day before the next rent payment