Private Rented Housing (Scotland) Act 2011 Explanatory Notes

Section 33 - Tenant information packs

38.To improve knowledge about housing legislation and regulation among private tenants and landlords, section 33 of the Act places a duty on private landlords to provide new tenants with specified documents by inserting new section 30A into the Housing (Scotland) Act 1988. Failure to do so (without reasonable excuse) is an offence attracting a fine not exceeding level 2.

39.New section 30B gives Ministers the power to specify the documents that must be provided, through secondary legislation. For example, this might include documents containing information about the tenancy (such as a tenancy agreement), about the house (such as the permitted level of occupancy), about the landlord (such as his or her landlord registration number), and about the rights and responsibilities of tenants, landlords and agents. They may include documents that the landlord is already required to provide under other sections of the 1988 Act. An order may make further provision, including about the form of the documents and the information to be included in (or expressly excluded from) any of them. It may provide that supply of a document in accordance with such an order will satisfy another statutory obligation to give a document, the intention of this provision being to remove duplication. It may provide for documents to be provided separately or at the same time.

40.Section 30B(2) requires the Scottish Ministers, before using the order-making power, to consult representatives of tenants, private landlords and landlords’ agents, as well as such other persons (including tenants, private landlords and landlords’ agents) as they consider appropriate.

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