Getting unpaid rent - who can I contact?

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    Getting unpaid rent - who can I contact?

    I currently have tenants in my property who owe 2 months rent. Their AST isn't up until November, so I'm serving a section 8 tomorrow. I was very much hoping that we would be able to come to an agreement so I don't actually have to take them to court, but I have to say that this is looking less and less likely.

    Anyway, as well as having them out I obviously need to recover the money they owe. The thing is, they're both quite young and their previous addresses before moving into my property are their parent's home addresses. So, my question is, can I write to the parents, explain the situation and ask them for assistance in recovering the money?

    I appreciate they may well ignore me, but equally they may not and I may get the money I'm owed faster than waiting for it to go through the courts. Am I allowed to do this or would it be seen as harrassment? Am I better to just serve the section 8 and do it all through the courts?

    Any advice would be appreciated, I've always been lucky and had paying tenants in the past so this is a new area for me. Also a bit of general advice on whether I can pursue this myself or whether I'm better to get a solicitor involved would also be helpful.

    thanks

    #2
    Originally posted by Kateson View Post
    So, my question is, can I write to the parents, explain the situation and ask them for assistance in recovering the money?

    I appreciate they may well ignore me, but equally they may not and I may get the money I'm owed faster than waiting for it to go through the courts. Am I allowed to do this or would it be seen as harrassment?
    Unless you write down something stupid in the letter that could be construed as harrassment - ie you write a polite letter with a suggested way they could aid their offspring and avoid them getting a CCJ etc - then no way could it be construed as harrassment.

    However, a slightly different issue is the question of whether you have the right to approach a tenant's relatives and give them information about their debts. I don't know the answer - I'm sure someone here will, especially those who are used to letting to young people - but if it's 'no' then possibly you might find yourself in hot water if you dob them in to Mum and Dad?

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      #3
      Don't bother writing to anyone unless they are a guarantor. Simply take all necessary steps to correctly bring about a section 8 claim. Let's hope that when they receive the notice it'll jolt them into positive paying action. Don't wait forever though.

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        #4
        Are they claiming what used to be known as housing benefit? My tenants were but did not tell me. If so, you can get the money paid directly to you when they are 8 weeks in arrears - the Council have to do this, though they may argue!
        Unshackled by the chains of idle vanity, A modest manatee, that's me

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          #5
          Originally posted by Poppy View Post
          Don't bother writing to anyone unless they are a guarantor. Simply take all necessary steps to correctly bring about a section 8 claim. Let's hope that when they receive the notice it'll jolt them into positive paying action. Don't wait forever though.
          Yes. But, Kateson, didn't you ask the parents to execute a Deed of Guarantee at the start? Why not?
          JEFFREY SHAW, solicitor [and Topic Expert], Nether Edge Law*
          1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
          2. Telephone advice: see http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=34638.
          3. For paid advice about conveyancing/leaseholds/L&T, contact me* and become a private client.
          4. *- Contact info: click on my name (blue-highlight link).

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            #6
            It was done through an agent - believe me, I'm now asking myself the same question.

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