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  • bad tenants

    the letting agency got my tenant to sign a section 21 at the begining of the tenancy.?? he has not paid this months rent and says he is struggling. i have done a house inspection today and he and his family have wrecked my house- livig like tramps, sleeping on mattresses, the gardens have 6 foot weeds . how quick can i getn them out

  • #2
    Was there a deposit. Was it protected? Was the "Prescribed info" given to them BEFORE the S21 was served & signed ?? If not & if there was a deposit then S21 is invalid..

    If S21 valid - is the tenancy still in the fixed term?? If so you can't start proceedings before the end of the fixed term. If now in periodic tenancy you can start proceedings now..

    In any case you can also sevre S8 notice grounds 10 & 11 but these are discretionary & unlikely to gain a possession order. If unpaid rent gets to 2 months then you can serve S8 ground 8 - if paperwork right you should succeed.


    Re..

    Originally posted by cumberlandroad View Post
    the letting agency got my tenant to sign a section 21 at the begining of the tenancy.?? he has not paid this months rent and says he is struggling. i have done a house inspection today and he and his family have wrecked my house- livig like tramps, sleeping on mattresses, the gardens have 6 foot weeds .
    They are (largely) entitled to do this as long as they return the property, when they leave, as it was less-fair-wear-'n-tear..
    I am legally unqualified: If you need to rely on advice check it with a suitable authority - eg a solicitor specialising in landlord/tenant law...

    Comment


    • #3
      1. Is it an assured shorthold tenancy in England/Wales?
      2. What date (dd/mm/yy) did the fixed term commence, and what is the length of the term?
      3. What date was the s.21 notice served, and what date does it say it expires?
      4. Did T pay a deposit and if so, is it protected by a scheme, and what date was the deposit protected/prescribed info provided to T?
      5. Did you have an inventory check-in/condition report carried out at the start of the tenancy?

      Comment


      • #4
        As Artful says, there must be some doubt over the validity of the s21. To be valid, it can not have been served before the tenancy began and it can not have been served before the deposit was protected / info given to tenants.

        It is also worth bearing in mind that the tenants have the right to live how they like - but they are not allowed to damage the place beyond fair wear and tear. The key thing is the state of the property when it is returned to you.

        Section 8 of the 1988 Housing Act is the process usually used for breaches of the tenancy - in particular, unpaid rent. You can also use the 'no fault' section 21 process, Section 21 does have the advantage that it does not always require a court hearing but can not be used to obtain an eviction within the fixed term and will not result in an order for missing rent.

        Section 8 has a number of 'at fault' grounds that can be cited as reasons to end the tenancy.

        Grounds 1 - 8 are mandatory - if the ground is met at the time the section 8 notice is served AND when the case is heard in court, then the judge can not refuse possession - although he may give the tenant extra time to comply with the requirements.

        The only ground in this section that is directly related to tenants breach of contract is ground 8. Ground 8 is used where tenants have not paid their rent for some time. The actual amounts are
        (a) if rent is payable weekly or fortnightly, at least eight weeks’ rent is unpaid;
        (b) if rent is payable monthly, at least two months’ rent is unpaid;
        (c) if rent is payable quarterly, at least one quarter’s rent is more than three months in arrears; and
        (d) if rent is payable yearly, at least three months’ rent is more than three months in arrears;
        Note the difference between 'unpaid' and 'arrears'. One day after a tenant misses a monthly rent payment, he has one month unpaid - but is only 1 day in arrears.

        One months rent is insufficient to qualify - but the moment the 2nd months rent is missed - bingo!

        The remaining 'breach of contract' grounds are discretionary - ie the judge will have to make a decision if the breach is severe enough to warrant evicting the tenant.

        These grounds are:

        Ground 10 - some rent is unpaid
        Ground 11 - rent has been persistently late
        Ground 12 - non-rent breach of tenancy
        Ground 13 - Damage or deteriation of the property
        Ground 14 - Nuisance or illegal activity (No notice)
        Ground 15 - Damage or deteriation of furniture
        Ground 17 - Tenancy obtained under false pretences

        You would seem to be able to serve a section 8 on grounds 10 & 13. For all of the grounds mentioned above (except g14), there is a 14 day notice period between serving the notice and being able to commence possession proceedings.

        The section 8 notice must be served in a specific format and you must obtain proof of service. You can take a witness and obtain a statement from them, but the most straightforward way is to send 2 copies by first class post from different post offices - obtaining a free certificate of posting. The courts will accept this as proof of service 2 working days later. Do not use 'Special Delivery' or 'Recorded Delivery' as the tenant can refuse to accept these.

        After the notice period expires, you can apply to the court for a possession order. You can either fill in court forms N5 and N119, or alternatively, you can use the Possession Claim Online website which is slightly cheaper.

        It will take around a month - maybe longer - before the hearing takes place and if the judge grants a possession order, the tenant will be given at least 14 days to go. If the tenant still refuses to go, you will have to employ court bailiffs, which is more expense and time.

        The judge can also issue an order that the tenant pays any rent owed. If the tenant ignores this order, you may have to take enforcement action which could include freezing his bank account, using bailiffs or obtaining an attachment of earnings order.

        DO NOT be tempted to use any process other than shown above. To do so will almost certainly be illegal eviction, which is a criminal offence and carries potentially heavy penalties.

        Comment


        • #5
          woah, more serious stuff then i thought.
          right the agency did all the legal stuff etc. the section 21 was explained in full to the tenant prior to him signing it- there were 2 witnesses to this. it is still valid. deposit given to agency and is protected. 6 month lease ran out 12 months ago, nothing signed since. neighbours have strted to complain about the noise and different things goingon. they have wrecked the kitchen, bathroom, some windows, all the venetian blinds, broke window locks, neglected all of it ie tea spilt on walls and floors not cleaned up. built in oven to greased and dirty to ever be used, oven top door broke etc etc etc- will cost a fortune to put right, will need new kitch/bath room/oven and more. he has missed 1 months rent telling me he doesn't know when he can get it ???

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by cumberlandroad View Post
            woah, more serious stuff then i thought.
            right the agency did all the legal stuff etc. the section 21 was explained in full to the tenant prior to him signing it- there were 2 witnesses to this. it is still valid. deposit given to agency and is protected. 6 month lease ran out 12 months ago, nothing signed since. neighbours have strted to complain about the noise and different things goingon. they have wrecked the kitchen, bathroom, some windows, all the venetian blinds, broke window locks, neglected all of it ie tea spilt on walls and floors not cleaned up. built in oven to greased and dirty to ever be used, oven top door broke etc etc etc- will cost a fortune to put right, will need new kitch/bath room/oven and more. he has missed 1 months rent telling me he doesn't know when he can get it ???
            Once the fixed term ends, the tenant gets a "Statutory Periodic Tenancy" by law. So the issue of the expired tenancy is a red-herring.

            It seems that you can add grounds 14 & 15 (and possibly 12) to the s8 - meaning no need for 14 days notice.

            I note your confidence regarding the s21 - could you answer Westminster's questions so that we can verify this - just because an agency handled it, sadly, does not mean it is right!

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by cumberlandroad View Post
              woah, more serious stuff then i thought.
              Ah, well, no offence but if not already join a LL assoc - NLA or RLA and if not already thuswise trained, do one of their courses... eg

              http://www.landlords.org.uk/advice-s...ndation-course
              ..or..
              http://www.rla.org.uk/landlord/courses/course1.shtml
              I am legally unqualified: If you need to rely on advice check it with a suitable authority - eg a solicitor specialising in landlord/tenant law...

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by cumberlandroad View Post
                woah, more serious stuff then i thought.
                right the agency did all the legal stuff etc. the section 21 was explained in full to the tenant prior to him signing it- there were 2 witnesses to this. it is still valid.
                Explaining a s.21 notice, and having witnesses to this, is utterly irrelevant in terms of the notice's validity. Please answer my questions in post #3.

                And yes, landlord and tenant law is serious stuff. Knowing about it is part of the job of being a landlord.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I agree. Why on earth did OP let (or even buy the BTL in the first place) without having a clue?
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                  1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by westminster View Post
                    1. Is it an assured shorthold tenancy in England/Wales?
                    2. What date (dd/mm/yy) did the fixed term commence, and what is the length of the term?
                    3. What date was the s.21 notice served, and what date does it say it expires?
                    4. Did T pay a deposit and if so, is it protected by a scheme, and what date was the deposit protected/prescribed info provided to T?
                    5. Did you have an inventory check-in/condition report carried out at the start of the tenancy?
                    Originally posted by theartfullodger View Post
                    Was there a deposit. Was it protected? Was the "Prescribed info" given to them BEFORE the S21 was served & signed ??
                    This is for the Moderator:
                    Can a list of control check boxes be setup for the above questions for each new thread, whereby the OP who is a tenant or LL has to provide an answer to each question before the OP is allowed to post their thread, since this information (and other data) is repeatedly asked by so many OPs and usually needed for respondents before they reply?

                    And like a signature, this information would be appended to the bottom of their postings and each respondent can reply knowing what the OP's tenant or LL status is.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by DrunkenJedi View Post
                      This is for the Moderator:
                      Can a list of control check boxes be setup for the above questions for each new thread, whereby the OP who is a tenant or LL has to provide an answer to each question before the OP is allowed to post their thread, since this information (and other data) is repeatedly asked by so many OPs and usually needed for respondents before they reply?

                      And like a signature, this information would be appended to the bottom of their postings and each respondent can reply knowing what the OP's tenant or LL status is.
                      Suggest you re-post in Forum Usage forum, although I disagree that what you suggest would be of any benefit.
                      '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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