Late/ Non payment of rent

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    Late/ Non payment of rent

    Hello, I'm new to letting and am a first time poster on here. I'm sure this is probably in the FAQ's but the page is currently unavailable.

    I'm currently letting my property to a tenant (on an assured shorthold tenancy agreement) for an initial term of 12 months. Said tenant has been in the property since 1st March 2010 so only 5 months but has so far been consistently late paying the monthly rent. Each month it’s been getting a couple of days later and August's rent hasn't been paid at all at the time of writing. I've spoken to my tenant about it and he seems amenable enough promising funds for this month are on the way and as of next month I'll get it on time.

    In preparation for continued problems however I'd like to know my rights and the best way of dealing with this (I suppose there are two issues here, late payment being the first and non payment the second).

    Secondly, at the time of letting I asked my tenant for a guarantor which he duly supplied. At what point should I seek to get a guarantor involved? And would I do this or is this something a lawyer or court would need to get involved with?

    Unless this situation improves I would not wish to continue beyond the initial 12 month term. At which point would it be best to make the tenant aware of this?

    Any help appreciated. Thanks.

    #2
    Providing any deposit paid was protected, I would suggest you issue a section 21(1)(b) notice now, with an expiry date of "after 28th February 2011".

    I would also suggest you issue a section 8 notice right away under grounds 10 (late rent) & 11 (unpaid rent) giving 14 days notice. It would be pointless actioning these as the breaches are relatively minor and 10/11 are discretionary grounds, which means the judge will consider if those breaches are serious enough for eviction.

    However, as soon as 2 months (worth) of rent is unpaid, you can re-serve your s8 to include ground 8. This is a mandatory ground, and providing 2 months worth is unpaid at the time of service, and the time of hearing, then you will be given a possession order and an order for any missing rent. Once the 14 days notice is up, you can commence a claim at www.possessioncalim.gov.uk

    You should contact the guarantor as soon as any rent is overdue, so it is fine to do so now. I would suggest you approach the first contact goes along the line of "I'm a bit worried about Mr X's rent, could you see if you can sort it because neither of us want you to have to pay it".

    What type of agreement do you have for the guarantor - is it a witnessed deed of guarantee?

    Comment


      #3
      Hi Snorkerz,

      Many thanks for your advice, particularly the angle of putting a friendly arm around the shoulder of the guarantor... it makes a lot of sense to try that.

      The guarantor agreement isn't a witnessed deed of guarantee as far as I'm aware, it was taken from the templates section of this website. I'm hoping its not worthless because its not witnessed?

      Out of interest why do you say "providing any deposit paid was protected" with regard to issuing a section 21(1)(b) notice?

      I guess my main problem is that its not a serious breach as yet, essentially I suppose I'm just trying to 'nip it in the bud'. Do you think it worth a warning letter first before issuing the section 21 and section 8 notices?

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by robertjcurley View Post
        Out of interest why do you say "providing any deposit paid was protected" with regard to issuing a section 21(1)(b) notice?
        Because L cannot serve a s.21 Notice at all if a protectable deposit is not protected. The Housing Act 2004 says so.
        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
          Can I protect it retrospectively and then still issue s21?

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by robertjcurley View Post
            Can I protect it retrospectively and then still issue s21?
            Yes, you can.
            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


              #7
              Originally posted by robertjcurley View Post
              The guarantor agreement isn't a witnessed deed of guarantee as far as I'm aware, it was taken from the templates section of this website. I'm hoping its not worthless because its not witnessed?
              I can't find a guarantor form on this site (http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/agreements_registered.htm) could you give me a link to the one you used? No guarantee is worthless - unless the guarantor knows it is!
              Do you think it worth a warning letter first before issuing the section 21 and section 8 notices?
              S8 and s21 are both warnings anyway - so pointless delaying things by adding a letter into the mix.

              Comment

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