tenant hasn't paid last months rent

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  • ferrari-airwolf
    started a topic tenant hasn't paid last months rent

    tenant hasn't paid last months rent

    Hi there I am in a bit of a weird situation. Basically, 1 month ago I handed my section 21 notice to the tenant to leave the property. the T should be moving out of the property mid February. The T has always paid on time and kept the house in a good and clean condition. However when I checked to see if this months (the last month of the tenancy) rent had been paid, it hadn't.

    I contacted the T about this and got a reply today. The T said that they have had problem with work, so they haven't been able to pay the rent. Now I don't know how to approach this, Would you guys be firm in the response about it and tell the T that you will take the rent arears out of the deposit if it isn't paid by the end of the month (as its the end of the tenancy anyway) or would you word it differently to the T a little less abrupt like, If it can't be paid, we can work out the rent arears through the depost you paid? I'm asking this because they have been good T's and i don't want to come across as a (insert censored word here) but I'm not going to stand there and let them have one months free rent especially after not notifying me on the situation before the rent was due. I'll also state in the response that I will be picking up the keys on the said date of the section 21 notice to see if they sound like they will move out or not. Any help would be appreciated.

  • ferrari-airwolf
    replied
    Ok, thanks for that bit of information. Hopefully it looks like it won't come to this as I received a text back from the tenant stating a time that is ok for me to pick the keys up. I have a feeling they have already moved out and living else where and are just waiting for the date stated on the S21 notice to hand the keys back.

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  • jpkeates
    replied
    If you give 24 hours notice of your intention to visit to inspect the condition of the property, you have a right to enter.
    The tenant can decline to allow you in, or lock you out (they have a right to exclude you that matches your right to enter).

    So you turn up when you say you will (presuming they haven't responded) with a witness, knock, make a lot of noise opening the door, shout hello anyone there for a while until you are sure you're a) dealing with an empty house or b) you and the witness can honestly say you believed you were and go in.

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  • ferrari-airwolf
    replied
    Right then, the 15th is almost here and I have had some progress on the situation. Firstly, last week I got a letter from the council stating how much I owe them in council tax from the 26th January 2018 until the end of the financial year, This has me believe that the Tenant has notified the council that they are leaving the property and that I am now responsible for the payments. That's a good sign in my eyes, but over the last week, I have drove past several times and the curtains have been shut and there seems to be no sign of anyone living there, which makes me wonder weather the tenant has done a flit.

    I have text them today to ask about coming around on the 15th, but I haven't had a reply yet. If I don't get a reply by then, I will be going around and will try and see if they are still living there. If they don't reply I will ask neighbours and look to see if there are any signs of anyone living there. If it looks like they have moved out, would I be aloud to enter the house with my spare keys the next day if I post a hand written notice through the door giving 24 hours notice, even if there wasn't a response from the tenant? I want to go in to see if they have done a flit and to make sure that the house and tenant are safe, if they are still there. Judging by the letter form the council, it looks like they have gone, but I still want to take precaution to find out.

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  • vandamme
    replied
    As a tenant, here's my thoughts/advice - be firm and fair. Keep the deposit and the rent arrears separate to be the safest. Tenant has probably always thought 'I'm a perfect tenant, so why should I not keep the last months rent, the LL can take it out of my deposit'. Effectively the tenant wants to use that money to put down a deposit on a new place, cash flow is very tight when you move with fee's and deposits etc. I'd have thought that his withholding of rent actually shows he WILL be leaving when he says he is.

    He's banking on his keeping the place in tip top condition and your flexibility ensuring he 'would' get the full deposit back, so why shouldn't he play the game to keep the money is his account.

    You could always insist on doing an early inspection now to see how confident you are that the full deposit would be returned (and that he will definitely be leaving) and make the call to let him off - that would keep him sweet and make sure he has the funds to move out - not everyone wants to game the system, a lot of us genuinely want a good relationship with the person who owns the home we live in.

    However this site is full of horror stories - as a tenant with a good relationship with my LL myself, I understand what business he is in and that if I take the p*** he is heavily invested in taking the correct procedure to get me out and relationships would break down. Its all a game and there are rules.

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  • mariner
    replied
    FAW, have you done any Formal LL training yet?

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  • leaseholder64
    replied
    Some section 8's can be issued with no arrears. I think the two months removes a lot of discretion from the courts. One section 8 reason that does not require arrears is a returning owner occupier, but the tenant must have been given written notice of this possibility before the tenancy started.

    I will pass on the idea that you cannot use section 8 on an SPT, but note that it seems unlikely to me.

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  • ferrari-airwolf
    replied
    Just to clarify, if the T doesn't leave on the date stated on the section 21 (before anyone says it, yes I know, she doesn't have to leave), that would mean that the tenancy would turn into a periodic tenancy, since I haven't renewed the AST right? If so, does a section 8 work when it goes onto a periodic tenancy? From what I've read it say section 8 can only be served on an AST and states you have to be 2 months in rent arrears before it can be served.

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  • StuartH
    replied
    Check your dates: you can't serve a valid s21 notice until four months have elapsed (and have to allow time for 'service') and you can't give less than two month's notice. So if it's a six-month tenancy, you can't normally seek to give notice to expire at the end of it, but only shortly after.

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  • RedHitman
    replied
    You can have as many as you want running side by side. They're only notices until you act upon them.

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  • amazondean
    replied
    You mean section 8 ground 8. A section 8 notice can be issued as soon as a tenants rent is late. Yes you can have a section 8 and section 21 running concurrently.

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  • ferrari-airwolf
    replied
    Originally posted by boletus View Post

    Depends on why you served the section 21.

    Are they in breach of the tenancy agreement?

    If you are selling up, why didn't you give a lot more amicable notice?

    If you just woke up one morning and decided to serve it on a whim I would be very interested.
    Thanks for all of the great answers guys.

    red hitman, I will send a letter first class recorded tomorrow stating that the rent is now a week over due.

    Boletus, I served the section 21 to get the house back so i could live in it, I gave them two months notice, 4 months into the 6 month contract. I actually told them prior to signing the TA, that it would be the last TA and I would be looking to take back possession of the property. So they've actually had 6 months notice.

    Nukecad, Yeah, the company who set up the TA did a bad job with the wording at certain points of it. worst case scenario I will just have to claim on my insurance that they haven't paid the rent.

    Just out of curiosity, if the tenant does decide to stay in the house after the date on the 6A form, it would then go onto a periodic tenancy right? If that's the case and they don't pay rent for that month, wouldn't that mean i'd be able to issue them a section 8 notice, seeing as I would then be 2 months in rent arrears? If I did that, would the section 8 override the section 21 notice if I had to take it to court to get a reposition order?

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  • nukecad
    replied
    Originally posted by ferrari-airwolf View Post
    Also my tenancy agreement states the following on the deposit:

    "The tenant pays the deposit as security for the performance of the tenants obligations and to compensate the landlord for any breach of those obligations. It is agreed that this sum shall not be transferable by the Tenant in a way and at any time against payment of the Rent and that no interest shall be payable on this deposit."
    That seems poorly worded.

    The tenant can't agree to use the deposit for rent "in any way or at any time", that TA specifically states that he can't.

    That doesn't mean that you can't claim unpaid rent against the deposit, just that the tenant can't agree to it.

    As the tenant can't agree "in any way or at any time" then I guess that it would have to be taken without his agreement, which means by the dispute resolution process.

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  • boletus
    replied
    Originally posted by ferrari-airwolf View Post
    Would you guys be firm in the response about it
    Depends on why you served the section 21.

    Are they in breach of the tenancy agreement?

    If you are selling up, why didn't you give a lot more amicable notice?

    If you just woke up one morning and decided to serve it on a whim I would be very interested.

    Leave a comment:


  • RedHitman
    replied
    I wouldn’t mention anything about taking money from the deposit. Just make sure you send a polite letter (lots of templates out there) reminding them rent is X days late and is due immediately and for them to get in touch if there’s a problem (maybe a bank issue?)

    Leave a comment:

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