Abandoned, none contactable, masses of debt, where next?

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  • Abandoned, none contactable, masses of debt, where next?

    Hello,

    I rent 1 flat and it's my first. I rented it to a Zambian man who signed assured shorthand tenancy on Dec 2015, it was for 6 months and is now a rolling contract.

    In this last year he has missed 4 rent payments but eventually paid.
    He missed his last one and we heard news the flat door was broken from neighbour.

    The door was smashed open and I entered peacefully but it looks like they have left in a quick hurry. I called police and they attended and said to change locks and leave note for tenant to call for key.

    Lots of Baillifs have hand delivered notes, lots of debts on credit cards and no bills paid. I believe this has got the better of this man and his family and he's left. His partner told her work they were going to Zambia and quit job. Neighbours haven't seen them for 2 weeks.

    I have no way of contacting them. Police and county courts are trying to find them.

    How do I reclaim possession in this case? Who and how do I serve?
    How long will this take, I am new to this and it's stressful.
    I just wish I had a text they were leaving.

    If they return I need to also get them out, they have ruined the flat and caused a lot of trouble. So I'd like to serve section 8 (is what I thought) but it would not be on grounds of none rent for 2 months.

    I just need a quick way to get the flat back. All help is greatly welcomed.

    Best regards,
    Chris

  • #2
    Any minute now, someone will be along to demand to know why you felt the need to mention the guy is Zambian.

    Comment


    • #3
      Because further down it says the wife told her boss they went to Zambia, someone would ask 'why did they go to Zambia' or 'why cant police find them', again it's highly likely they have gone back to another country and those facts link together and this is why it might be we can never get in contact again. It explains things better and that's the only known fact about where they are. It also suggests abandonment.

      They could be in Slovakia, but no one has said that to us. Despite the partner coming from Slovakia and thus why I didnt mention Slovakian.

      Please dont assume, I'm already upset it's not welcome on my first forum post.

      Comment


      • #4
        The only way to get the flat back "quickly" is to take some risk.

        The proper and legal way to get the flat back is to serve notice (s8 would be fine as no one is going to defend it), use as many grounds as you can find and make it clear that the property has been abandoned and there is no possibility of the tenant returning.

        Visit frequently and document your enquiries to show you have tried to contact the tenant without success.

        You should find that the court will give a repossession order - the bailiffs will serve notice on the occupants of the property, so that should be sufficient to mitigate the court's concerns that the tenant might return.

        There will be a delay for the court hearing and another for the bailiffs.

        The alternative is to repossess the property, either by securing it and leaving notes for the tenant, or simply retaking possession and moving on with life.
        The risk is that the tenant comes back and wants their home back and you will have (probably) illegally evicted them

        So a lot comes down to your attitude to risk and your confidence that what you have found out is correct.
        When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
        Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by jpkeates View Post
          You should find that the court will give a repossession order - the bailiffs will serve notice on the occupants of the property, so that should be sufficient to mitigate the court's concerns that the tenant might return.
          .
          firstly, thank you for your detailed response.
          How long does this process usually take?
          Also the section 8 says give 2 weeks to 2 months notice, I was curious how long should I give?

          Comment


          • #6
            The varying periods of notice depend on the specific grounds - different grounds have different periods of notice.

            The time for the process varies nationally and is dependent on local work loads (once the notice periods are served).
            It can take between 4-8 months quite easily,
            When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
            Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

            Comment

            Latest Activity

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            • Abandonment
              buttons
              I have had a phone call from the tenants daughter, (didnt know she existed), telling me he is leaving in two weeks. I told her he has nearly 4 months left on his 12 month AST. I subsequently got two calls from a housing association. asking for a reference for him, I told them the situation but they...
              20-09-2017, 19:56 PM
            • Reply to Abandonment
              KTC
              If the tenant holds a material interest of 6 months or more (i.e. during the 12 months AST), then the tenant is liable for council tax whether they are resident or not. During a SPT, the liability revert to the landlord when the tenant is no longer resident.
              20-09-2017, 21:33 PM
            • Tenant having parking issues trying to hold me responsible
              koksy
              I own a freehold house which has had the front garden paved over to provide off road parking. There is a dropped kerb in front of the garden and double yellow lines all the way across the front of the house.

              The local neighbours are choosing to ignore the double yellow lines and keep parking...
              20-09-2017, 18:22 PM
            • Reply to Tenant having parking issues trying to hold me responsible
              leaseholder64
              The police really do not like dealing with this sort of thing, and you are unlikely to get a response, even though they could prosecute for obstructive parking. This is especially true given the double yellow lines, as they would prefer the council impose a civil penalty.

              Although it will...
              20-09-2017, 21:20 PM
            • Reply to Tenant having parking issues trying to hold me responsible
              security2
              If someone blocked the public footway outside the front gate to the property so your tenant couldn't walk into the property, would he call you to get this rectified? Or would he call the police/council?

              No different if its a car on the public highway or any other blockage on the public...
              20-09-2017, 21:20 PM
            • Reply to Abandonment
              Wannadonnadoodah
              May only be tenants who have housing benefit paid then.
              20-09-2017, 21:17 PM
            • Reply to Abandonment
              buttons
              This I believe is incorrect, I do have experience of that part happening before and sent the council a copy of the AST and they cancelled my charge....
              20-09-2017, 21:14 PM
            • Reply to Abandonment
              Wannadonnadoodah
              In the eyes of the council as soon as he starts paying CT at his new property the liability will fall to you regardless of what else is happening.
              20-09-2017, 21:02 PM
            • Reply to Abandonment
              buttons
              I thought you could have it so that property was marketed but he still had liability as he wont be able to pay anything as he is unemployed and would reduce his liability to council tax if let before the end of his tenancy.
              20-09-2017, 20:48 PM
            • Reply to Abandonment
              KTC
              Either you recover the property, or the tenant is still the tenant with liability for rent & council tax (during fixed term of 6 months or more). You can't have it both ways of getting the property back but not liable for council tax.
              20-09-2017, 20:38 PM
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