Section 21 notice not valid?

Hi we have recently been served a section 21 notice by the landlord who is looking to sell the property, we are currently in the process of buying our own property so the sooner we can leave the better we dont want to stay longer than we have to etc.

They have served the notice with 8 weeks rather than a straight 2 months, is that valid as everything i have read states 2 months not 8 weeks and even in the owners side to the forum i have seen people mention say 1st jan would be 1st feb rather than 26th of feb if it was 8 weeks.

Can anyone confirm if thats grounds for an unvalid notice, they also have it dated from the day before we actually recieved it at the address


Yes, the notice is invalid. The number of people who think a month = 4 weeks is alarming.

You are entitled to serve your own notice when you’re ready.


Hi david, im not going to lie thats a relief to hear.

The amount of stress/anxiety that has come from not only buying a property to then them issuing this is beyond belief.

So what would be the plan, i know this is a little bit backwards as i actually want to be out and dont want to cause any issues for either ourselves or the landlord but would obviously like to avoid temporary accommodation for as long as possible due to us not only having a dog but the cost involved.

Background- we have never had any issues with being told off by the landlord etc always paid rent on time.

Would we essentially keep quiet untill the date the stated and then when they ask why we havent vacated we just explain its not valid or do we need to tell them now?

Thank you for the speedy response

If you are set on buying your own place and will no longer be renting after this tenancy then you are in a good place because it really doesn’t matter from your point of view if you overstay your welcome.

If you are willing to do that then your first action should be to do nothing except to inform your LL in writing and courteously that you are buying a place and, when you are ready, will be giving the required notice to leave. Mention your expected timeline for that but also that you have no guarantees. Thank them for their understanding.

Don’t bring up that the S21 is invalid because, if it comes to it and you do overstay your welcome, you’ll buy time when they discover that after having it rejected in court and have to reapply for it. That will start the whole process again.

Also, be aware that even if you get an S21, it doesn’t end the tenancy and you do not have to leave. The only time you have to leave is when bailiffs turn up to evict you. That will take a long time and cost money. The LL should know that and so be willing to come to a compromise that allows you to stay until you can move into your new home.

Do document everything in writing i.e. avoid having discussions on the phone or in person that you have no record of and try to remain calm, courteous and understanding of their need to sell throughout.


Hi tatemono

They know we are buying/looking for a property as it was brought up last year that we would be looking around this time, they seem to think that we stated we would be out by this time which is where i can see the having it in writting helps.

How would writing to them help at this moment if they already know we are buying a place and are just in the process after offer being accepted. The property we are buying the owner currently lives so ive been advised to liase the possible end date of the section 21 to the solicitor who will express concern to the vendor so we dont actually have a time frame as of yet to be out by.

Thank you for the response

well you don’t need to write to them, but as I was ignorant of the fact that the LL is aware, that was my suggestion. What putting it in writing does do is get it on record in case things go pear shaped later e.g. your purchase falls through.

I did add a post with a link to Shelter’s S21 validity checker but it’s stuck in a moderation queue. If you search the web for S21 checker shelter, you’ll find it if you want to officially check it’s invalid.

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Hi i think i actually used that one this morning, it ask a bunch of yes, no, dont know questions. That one didnt state anything reguarding the 8 weeks/2 clear months which led me to post on here. We have updated the solicitors to have a word with the sellers agent etc to inform them of a possible deadline date so hopefully we wont need to come to any of this.

tatemono has given good advice. My only thing would be I’d tell them they have given you the wrong dates on the S21 because I like to do the right thing morally but then again if they are not being good to you and have shown themselves to be unreasonable then I’d not say a word as, at the end of the day, you have to look after your own interests. Hopefully this landlord who served the S21 has been good to you. We got an S21 completely out of the blue as the landlady has had to suddenly move back into the house due to relationship breakdown. We were very upset but we can’t hold it against her… It’s her house after all. We’ve found a new rental and are paying to fix all the little issues our permitted dog caused so as not to burden her or prolong a deposit scheme battle. Yes, it’s costing us shed loads to move and pay contractors. But, it’s what we’d want if the tables were turned. We play by the golden rule in life. Integrity has served us well.

I hope you can finalise possession on your new home purchase and that the landlord is reasonable! Keep us updated, I’m always curious to learn how things turn out for others.


No i completely understand that, unfortunately its been nothing but an attempt at a guilt trip and to rush us out as fast as possible.

Its a shame as like i first mentioned i would avoid everything if its a case of the bew place is ready by then but the fact we feel like we are being hit by pressured guilt and just bad reasons as to why.

We just feel like after the amount of years we have been here that there hasnt been much give and take from the landlord in the end and no favours done to help us, yet as good tenants we have provided sooner access to have test/valuations done withing 24hours notice etc.

I say all this but it has been documented to our solicitor to give the seller to our new home a theoretical deadline for us tohave the keys by so hopefully its a silver lining as much as it is a nightmare


Id do nothing, ignore the s21 notice and serve your own when you have a completion date.

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although the golden rule would indicate that you should be reasonable to them despite them being unreasonable to you :wink:


Why not just pick up the phone and explain the notice should be served with a 2 month notice date and allowing for post a few additional days. Why make it difficult for the landlord, despite their error. Surely with a good relationship a landlord would be happy with a months notice from you when the time comes (thus allowing 1 month for them to advertise and carry out viewings). Sometimes talking helps and a smooth exit for you is far better than any angst.


As a LL, I’d say that’s because it’s the LL’s responsibility to a) know that and b) do it right.

Also because the OP said

… and it seems like buying the maximum time they can will help alleviate LL-induced stress.

Fair enough :sweat_smile:

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Just keep the landlord informed of progress. I personally would not state the notice is incorrect unless the landlord starts being funny with you as it creates unnecessary tension. The landlord is well aware that you can only do your best to be out by the deadline date.

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Blondie1 above makes an excellent suggestion, keep the communication going, keep it as nice as you can. Politely state where you are and that the LL needn’t be concerned as essentially you have the same goal you are working towards. Kharma has a way of coming round, maybe you leave something or an important letter comes for you a few months after you have left.
Regarding your notice why not speak to shelter, they are free. I hope you find an amicable resolution to your issue

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I agree with Blondie and Sidney 1. A lot of stress is in our heads, and if your landlord has always been decent to you keep the decency going. See what his reason is for issuing the Section 21? it may be that as the Government may be banning Section 21’s in the future he is just hedging his bets and is perfectly willing to liaise with you to agree a moving date which would suit you both. I hope your purchase and move goes smoothly.

I have read everything and thank you for everyones input, however if your not going to read the entire thread please keep your opinions to yourself reguarding being nice to the landlord when they have shown zero respect, a landlord thats been good and a landlord that has never bothered is 2 very different things, i will however keep him upto date with our exit plan and let him know when we will be giving notice.

Ps anyway to now lock the thread?

Just share your opinions on refugees apparently jumping housing queues, why Brexit has made being a landlord so much worse and/or how Labour is going to decimate the private rental market.

That should get the thread locked pretty fast :smile:


Don’t forget you will need to comply with the notice period in the tenancy agreement. Probably one month but could be two. I’d suggest at the point you serve that notice just politely mention that you have discovered their notice is invalid

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