Coronavirus is making life hard for everyone. This may be impacting on the place you call home.

The social and economic impacts are increasing personal debt and relationship breakdown. All of this can put people at risk of losing their homes.

This page provides information and sources of further advice and guidance for landlords and tenants facing or having concerns about their situation in the private rented sector.

Update - May 2021

Since the pandemic struck, several changes in Government policy and procedures on eviction have been made. In summary:

  • The ban on bailiff-enforced evictions will end on 31st May unless anyone living in the property has COVID-19 symptoms or is self-isolating. This means legal evictions are expected from 14th June onwards.
  • The requirement for landlords to provide six month notice periods to tenants before they evict will be reduced to four months from 1st June.
  • There are exemptions to this for:
    • anti-social behaviour (immediate to four weeks notice)
    • domestic abuse in the social sector (two to four weeks notice)
    • false statements (two to four weeks notice)
    • over four months accumulated rent arrears (four weeks notice)
    • breach of immigration rules (two weeks notice)
    • the death of a tenant (two months notice)
  • Notice periods for cases where there are four or more months of unpaid rent will reduce to two months from 1st August. 
  • Subject to public health advice and progress regarding the Government's roadmap out of lockdown, notice periods will return to the pre-pandemic level of two months from 1st October.
  • Court arrangements and rules introduced in September have been extended until July to ensure that cases of anti-social behaviour and fraud are prioritised with landlords required to provide the courts with information on how the pandemic has impacted their tenants.
  • For claims issued before 3rd August 2020 the service of a reactivation notice has been extended to 30th April 2021.
  • A new free mediation pilot is under way to support landlords and tenants to resolve disputes without a formal court hearing in an attempt to help tenants at an early stage of the possession process, mitigating the risk of tenants losing their homes and helping to sustain tenancies where possible.

This can be a complicated area and you should seek further information and advice should you be impacted or at risk.

Everyone wants to prevent eviction and homelessness and we encourage tenants and landlords to positively engage with each other about these issues. This page contains further information to help tenants and landlords access the support available in your local area and get to know your rights.

Working together, we can prevent homelessness.

Information for tenants

If you have concerns about any of the following now is the time to seek help:

  • Debt
  • Loss of employment
  • Claiming benefits
  • Housing issues

The earlier you get support, the better. Follow the links at the end of this page for resources and services across Greater Manchester and those specific to your local authority area.

If you are served with an Eviction Notice please seek advice and support before acting upon it.

If you are a tenant in a housing association property, there are pledges to support and prevent eviction (opens in a new tab) in place from the majority of Greater Manchester social landlords.

If you are a home owner similar concerns may apply to you. Use the links provided to access advice, guidance and support that is relevant to you.

Information for landlords

The National Residential Landlords Association offers a wealth of advice and guidance to support landlords, on how to work with tenants to manage arrears and avoid repossession, and on how to act responsibly and within the law if regaining possession is unavoidable.

Our Job Centres and Local Authorities are resources for you. If you have issues maintaining a tenancy agreement please seek support for yourself and on behalf of your tenant where possible.

This page will be updated regularly if policy and advice changes.

The Greater Manchester Combined Authority will continue to lobby for National Government policy that will help us to meet the need of housing and homelessness, which is being impacted further by Coronavirus.

Leaders continue to call for significant changes to welfare policy and increased investment in social and truly affordable housing.

Housing advice services across Greater Manchester

For both Tenants and Landlords

The Government’s guidance for renting, incorporating new legislation and advice about Covid-19 (opens in a new tab)

The Government's guidance for their Housing Possession Mediation Service (external website, opens in a new tab)

For Tenants

To find out if you are entitled to legal aid: Civil Legal Advice (opens in a new tab) and Find a local solicitor (opens in a new tab)

Up to date advice from Shelter (opens in a new tab) for tenants during the pandemic

GM Law Centre have developed this guide to support residents and support organisations to assist people through the current health emergency: Greater Manchester Law Centre's COVID-19 Survival Guide

Your local Citizens Advice can provide general free, confidential and independent advice and information (opens in a new tab)

For free, expert, debt advice: StepChange Debt Charity (opens in a new tab)

Apply for Universal Credit (opens in a new tab)

Apply for a budget advance (opens in a new tab) during the five week wait for the first payment of Universal Credit

Help from Citizens Advice (opens in a new tab) in making a claim for Universal Credit

Potential grants for the self-employed (opens in a new tab) people whose business has been affected by coronavirus

Entitled to (opens in a new tab) – who offer online benefit calculators, including specific advice on help available from benefits if you are affected by coronavirus

Tenants Union UK (opens in a new tab) and Association of Community Organisations for Reform Now (opens in a new tab) – who work on behalf of tenants and others to improve the quality of life for tenants

Free specialist housing advice in Bolton, Oldham, Rochdale and Wigan – One to one specialist housing advice helping to prevent eviction or to find alternative accommodation.

Greater Manchester Tenants Union (external site) - Member-led organisation of low and middle income renters that want to transform the housing system so that everyone has access to an affordable, secure and decent home.

ACORN (external site) - Mass membership organisation fighting for a fairer deal for communities. 

For Landlords

The National Residential Landlords Association (opens in a new tab) offers a wealth of advice and guidance to support landlords

Our Partners are also able to offer free online training (opens in a new tab) – to help you support tenants with different needs to cope with the emotional impact of COVID-19. This takes around 90 minutes to complete and is also available in three sessions for you to complete at your own pace.

If you are a home owner similar concerns may apply to you. Use the links provided to access advice, guidance and support that is relevant to you.

Support in your local area

Follow the links below to reach the housing services in your local area.

Bolton Council housing options (opens in a new tab)

Bury Council housing advice (opens in a new tab)

Manchester City Council housing help and advice (opens in a new tab)

Oldham Council housing advice and support (opens in a new tab)

Rochdale Boroughwide Housing - homelessness advice (opens in a new tab)

Salford Council - housing advice and support (opens in a new tab)

Stockport Homes - homelessness advice (opens in a new tab)

Tameside Council - housing advice (opens in a new tab)

Trafford Council - homelessness advice (opens in a new tab)

Wigan Council - housing advice (opens in a new tab)

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