Do I have sufficient grounds to evict?

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    Do I have sufficient grounds to evict?

    Hi,

    I have a property which is let on a 12 month AST which commenced on 26th April 2010. The tenants have breached the contract on multiple grounds and I would really like to remove them if possible, however there is no break clause so the only route I can go is eviction.

    The breaches are as follows:

    A week after moving in the tenants asked permission to get Sky TV installed. I declined permission as I did not want holes drilling and cabling running through the house. They have gone ahead and had a satellite dish installed without my permission.

    Thye have recently acquired 2 German Shepherd puppies. There is a no pets clause in the contract and they also signed paperwork at the LA stating they had no pets ( they also had a lizard however I belive that has now move elsewhere). The dogs have destroyed the back garden and dug under the boundary fence

    They are causing a nuisance to the neighboutrs in the adjoining property. this involves, lourd music, shouting, fighting and foul and abusive language through out the day and night. 2 weeks ago they were outside fighting in the
    street in the early hours which disrupted other neighbours. The adjoining neighbours feel intimidated and won't involve the police as they are worried about reprisals so have been in contact with me. I know I can't call the police myself as I'm not resident so am a bit stuck

    This is a house that I lived in so I know the neighbours, I also intend to live there again in the future so want to keep a good relationship going as well as taking the best care of my property.

    We had to do a maintenance visit to the property about 2 months ago and at that stage were concerned about the condition it was being kept in. I have requested access to do further maintenance but the tenants have not responded to any point of contact (email, phone & text).

    I am now at the stage where I would really like to get them out of the property and would really appreciate advice or experienced opinion as to whether I have sufficient grounds to issue an S8?

    thanks

    #2
    You can issue a section 8 notice grounds 12 (non-rent breach) and 14 (antisocial behaviour) and this would give them at most 14 days to vacate (I think if ground 14 is used you can apply for a court order immediately). If they do not go, then you would have to apply for a court order for possession, which may or may not be forthcoming. It would be a case of persuading a judge that the antisocial behaviour is sufficiently documented and sufficiently troublesome to warrant granting you possession.

    Your tenant's neighbours (or you) should defnitely report his activites to the police if it constitutes breach of the peace and to the Noise Abatement people at your local council - the more times this is reported, the better your evidence. The neighbours (on both sides) should be asked to keep a log and note whenever the noise/antisocial behaviour occurs - dates, times, duration, nature of complaint. It's all grist to the mill.

    I would get them to do this for a month or so then issue the s8 and go for it.

    Do they pay their rent on time - is there any rent owing?

    They sound painful - you (and the neighbours) have my sympathies.
    '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

    Comment


      #3
      Thank you for your response Mind The Gap. That has been really helpful.

      I thought the neighbour/ disruption issue was something that I couldn't get involved in directly though as I'm not a resident. and therefore the police wouldn't take my word for it if I contacted them. It would be difficult for me to call the police as the neighbour only contacts me after an issue and not during. I will certainly speak to the neighbours and ask them to send me documentation recording details of "incidents"

      Unfortunately the tenants pay promptly by standing order a month in advance so from that respect they are model tenants!

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by mind the gap View Post
        You can issue a section 8 notice grounds 12 (non-rent breach) and 14 (antisocial behaviour) and this would give them at most 14 days to vacate (I think if ground 14 is used you can apply for a court order immediately).
        Yes.
        Originally posted by mind the gap View Post
        If they do not go, then you would have to apply for a court order for possession, which may or may not be forthcoming. It would be a case of persuading a judge that the antisocial behaviour is sufficiently documented and sufficiently troublesome to warrant granting you possession.
        This is the crux. Both g12 and g14 are only discretionary.
        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).

        Comment


          #5
          Thanks for your post Jeffrey. I take from what you're saying that an S8 would be unlikely to have the desired outcome?

          The situation has become complicated by the fact that the couple have now split up, the male informed my LA yesterday that he has moved out and wants to be removed from the tenancy. He said that she is still living there though. The LA don't manage the property, so he should have informed me. The LA told him it was a 12 month tenancy for which he is liable to the end (26th March 2011). Neither of the tenants have contacted me to let me know and have not responded to any attempts I have made to contact them

          To be honest I would just like to get my property back, it's all getting too messy and stressful.

          Comment


            #6
            Oh dear. It might be best to wait and see if the current changes result in the remaining tenant being unable to pay the rent. Once it is overdue by a month and a day, and thus two months unpaid, a section 8 ground 8 action can be started for which the grant of a possession order is mandatory. If you want to use any grounds which are discressionary, then the use of professional legal assistance is recommended, and you need to make sure that the professional you instruct is well versed in landlord/tenant law (e.g. our advertisers and legal topic experts). I was talking to an acquaintance the other day who is a very experienced solicitor who told me that he would never accept an instruction in L/T matters, but would find an expert to assist. Some general solicitors think that they know it all!

            (Solicitors have been known to post on this board for advice.)

            P.P.
            Any information given in this post is based on my personal experience as a landlord, what I have learned from this and other boards and elsewhere. It is not to be relied on. Definitive advice is only available from a Solicitor or other appropriately qualified person.

            Comment


              #7
              PP not sure you quite right there.

              Ground 8 - This ground has been changed by the Housing Act 1996 and concerns arrears of rent. Arrears must exceed 8 weeks if the rent is paid weekly or fortnightly, 2 months if paid monthly, one full quarter if paid quarterly or 3 months if paid yearly. The maximum arrears in each case must exist both at the notice of proceedings and at the hearing itself. The ground must be clearly stated so that the tenant knows what he is responding to.

              So Unpaid Month 1 - due but not overdue/arears.
              So unpaid Month 2 - Month 1 is now overdue/arrears, Month 2 is Due.
              So Unpaid Month 3 - Month 1/2 is now overdue/arrears(G8 applies), Month 3 is Due.

              g12/g14 is the quickest way, but lead yourself open to legal costs if you can't prove it, or court believe it's not just.
              Disclaimer: What I say is either right or wrong. It may be advisable to check what I say with a solicitor. If he says I am right then I am right, unless he is wrong in which case I am wrong; but if he says I am wrong then I am wrong, unless he is wrong in which case I am right

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by mjbfire View Post
                PP not sure you quite right there.
                It´s you that´s wrong. Here´s the ground:-

                Ground 8
                Rent is unpaid at the time of service of Notice seeking possession and at the time of the hearing for a Possession Order;
                a) In the case of rent paid weekly or fortnightly at least eight weeks rent is owing.
                b) In the case of rent paid monthly at least two months rent is owing.
                c) In the case of rent paid quarterly at least one quarters rent is more than three months over due.
                d) In the case of rent paid yearly at least three months rent is more than three months over due.
                Two months rent arrears will normally give the Landlord an automatic right to a Possession Order.


                The ground hinges on the rent being unpaid when it is due, and that occurs on the 2nd 'rent due' date. The tenant can defeat ground 8 by bringing the amount owed to below two months due
                I offer no guarantee that anything I say is correct. wysiwyg

                Comment


                  #9
                  Thanks for you replies, sounds like I'm going to have to pay very close attention to the tenancy for the time being.

                  I asked the LA about the credit check information as I was wondering if the remaining tenant would have sufficient income to cover the rent. I know she's got other considerable outgoings ( keeping a horse for starters). The LA's view is that if there are rent arrears then both tenants are liable but I guess that is going to be a tricky one to sort as I'm sure he will "disappear".

                  The LA seemed to thinkit's perfectly fine for her to get someone in the help out with the rent but surely that's sub letting which is a breach of the contract?

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by Anuket View Post
                    but surely that's sub letting which is a breach of the contract?
                    My understanding is that subletting is where the tenant vacates the property and allows someone else to live there. Your tenant becomes their non-resident landlord, and so the subtenant gets an AST and all the tenancy rights that go with it. However, a lodger (with your tenant being their resident landlord) has much less (almost no) rights and certainly wouldn't affect any possession proceedings you took against your tenant - if you sent the bailiffs in to remove her, everybody would be removed.

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