What Happens If Evicted?

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  • What Happens If Evicted?

    Please excuse this possible dumb question, I've tried googling but can't find an answer.

    In late August 2009 my partner and I moved into our flat on a 12 month AST. In our tenancy application my partner stated we owned a cat. When we came to sign the tenancy agreement it has a clause stating cats / dogs only with landlords written permission. As we had already stated this as above we thought nothing of this and signed (first mistake, I know).

    Both the landlord and the letting agent have known since day one that we had a cat in the property. We have recently asked to be released from our tenancy one month early as my mother is very ill and we need to move away to look after her (long story). Since we asked this our landlord and agent have cut up rough, sending nasty letters stating we have a cat without their permission etc etc. They have also said that they will release us from the tenancy at the end of July but want receipts for professinal cleaning (and fumigating!) and the rent for August (which I can't get my head round - why would we have to pay rent if they are "allowing" us to leave early?)

    I think they are setting us up to threaten us with eviction for breaking a clause in our tenancy. Our rent is fully up to date and has been paid in full every month on the due date.

    My dumb question is this - if the landlord was to take us to court to seek possession are we due to pay the rent until the end of the term (end of August) or does the eviction notice end the tenancy meaning no further rent is due from that date? Also, if this is the case we would challenge the eviction given that we made the landlord aware in our application that we had a cat and that they have also known about her since the day we moved in as they were here and saw her yet they have taken no action (not even a letter) until 7 months in when we have asked for early release. Is it likely that any court case would be done and dusted within the five months between now and the end of the tenancy?

    more to follow in another thread, as we have many many issues with this property such that we really regret moving here. FWIW I'd like to think we are good tenants, our last landlord was sorry to see us leave and we only did so for a bigger property in an supposedly better location

    thanks in advance
    Mackem

  • #2
    The short answer is that unless you agree a formal surrender with your LL, or he obtains a court order for possession for breach of contract (usually non-payment of rent), you are liable for the full rent for the whole of the fixed term, ie until the end of July.

    I cannot see how your LL can evict you unless you default on the rent for more than two months. Just keeping a cat (especially as you declared it in your application), is not sufficient to allow the LL to evict you.

    If your LL did manage to obtain a possession order, it would end the tenancy and you would not be liable for any more rent.

    What I am confused about is whether you would prefer to stay or go?
    'Pause you who read this, and think for a moment of the long chain of iron or gold, of thorns or flowers, that would never have bound you, but for the formation fo the first link on one memorable day'. Charles Dickens, Great Expectations

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    • #3
      Originally posted by mackem View Post
      Please excuse this possible dumb question, I've tried googling but can't find an answer.

      In late August 2009 my partner and I moved into our flat on a 12 month AST. In our tenancy application my partner stated we owned a cat. When we came to sign the tenancy agreement it has a clause stating cats / dogs only with landlords written permission. As we had already stated this as above we thought nothing of this and signed (first mistake, I know).

      Both the landlord and the letting agent have known since day one that we had a cat in the property. We have recently asked to be released from our tenancy one month early as my mother is very ill and we need to move away to look after her (long story). Since we asked this our landlord and agent have cut up rough, sending nasty letters stating we have a cat without their permission etc etc. They have also said that they will release us from the tenancy at the end of July but want receipts for professinal cleaning (and fumigating!) and the rent for August (which I can't get my head round - why would we have to pay rent if they are "allowing" us to leave early?)

      I think they are setting us up to threaten us with eviction for breaking a clause in our tenancy. Our rent is fully up to date and has been paid in full every month on the due date.

      My dumb question is this - if the landlord was to take us to court to seek possession are we due to pay the rent until the end of the term (end of August) or does the eviction notice end the tenancy meaning no further rent is due from that date? Also, if this is the case we would challenge the eviction given that we made the landlord aware in our application that we had a cat and that they have also known about her since the day we moved in as they were here and saw her yet they have taken no action (not even a letter) until 7 months in when we have asked for early release. Is it likely that any court case would be done and dusted within the five months between now and the end of the tenancy?

      more to follow in another thread, as we have many many issues with this property such that we really regret moving here. FWIW I'd like to think we are good tenants, our last landlord was sorry to see us leave and we only did so for a bigger property in an supposedly better location

      thanks in advance
      Mackem
      ok unless your landlord serves with a Section 21 notice requiring notice (and this cannot end before the expiry of the fixed term) they cannot evict you.

      They could take you to court on grounds that they think you have broken the terms of the tenancy however i really dont think a judge would grant possession on these grounds if its as you say above.

      If you allow you to surrender the tenancy I suggest you should get them to sign a deed of surrender allowing you to leave early. They cannot allow you to leave early and still charge you rent - very odd!

      If you are still within your fixed term then you do not have to give the owners any notice at all to leave as your fixed terms ends on a certain date and if you leave on this date you have nothing more to pay - stay one day later and contract becomes periodic and you do have to give notice.

      Regarding the pets - you should have the carpets cleaned professionally if you have a pet - this will get rid of hairs, any fleas etc and is generally a condition written into the agreement. Do you have a copy of the form you signed saying you have pets? perhaps the agents forgot to tell the landlord you had pets? the agreement should state "permission is granted for one x cat to live in the subject to...... professional cleaning etc" Did it say this?

      Comment


      • #4
        Thanks for your replies.

        @ mindthegap - whilst leaving before the end of July would be a pain, to be honest we would be happy to do so. Both of us can find places to live (I'm moving to Durham to start a new job / look after my mum, my partner is staying here until our lad finishes primary school to minimise disruption for him - hence not wanting to end the tenancy until July but she can stay with family short term). What we were worried about was the landlord going to court to evict us for having a cat but us still having to pay rent until the end of the term (end of August). I know what they have to do to get possesion, it is just a possibility at the moment and I want to know my ground before I start fighting back. Your answer has cleared this up for me - thank you for that.

        @Poppy - yes we thought that very odd too. I can't understand why the agent would write to us saying yes the landlord says you can leave end of July but you have to pay your rent for August (to the end of the term) as well. As for the cleaning we fully intended to have the place cleaned professionally before we leave - we want our deposit back - I just can't understand why the agent has suddenly become such a dick over this, especially given other issues there are with the flat.

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