Tenant left without returning keys

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    Tenant left without returning keys

    Hi all,

    Just a quickie. My tenant, who I have been in the process of evicting, appears to have left the property - all of his stuff seems to be gone, as far as I can see through the windows. He has not contacted me, or left me the keys.

    Two questions:
    - What is the best way of regaining possession of the property whilst covering our backs against unfair eviction? Note that we do not have a key to enter.

    - The tenant was receiving HB(paid direct to me). Assuming the tenant has left, will HB become unpayable on the day we regain possession?

    Thanks muchly!
    Any posts by myself are my opinion ONLY. They should never be taken as correct or factual without confirmation from a legal professional. All information is given without prejudice or liability.

    #2
    My understanding is that HB could become unpayable on the first date you became aware your tenant may have left the property, not on the day you regain possession.. perhaps someone else can clarify ...


    Originally posted by MrShed View Post
    - The tenant was receiving HB(paid direct to me). Assuming the tenant has left, will HB become unpayable on the day we regain possession?

    Thanks muchly!
    Any information or opinion given in this post is based only on my personal experience, what I have learned from this, other boards and elsewhere. It is not to be relied on. Definitive advice is only available from a Solicitor or other appropriately qualified person. E&OE

    Comment


      #3
      The reason I say when we regain possession is because surely the tenancy still exists until that time, rather than when the tenant has left(or we become aware of such). But, I can see the argument for that side also.
      Any posts by myself are my opinion ONLY. They should never be taken as correct or factual without confirmation from a legal professional. All information is given without prejudice or liability.

      Comment


        #4
        The problem is that he could well be establishing a claim elsewhere. As soon as the local authority realise this they will stop his claim and try to claim back any overpaid benefit from you. You can appeal against this as they should be getting it back rom the tenant, but it's a bit of a battle.

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          #5
          i have spoken about it to a HB manager and he confirmed to me that HB stops the day the Tenants vacate the property regardless of reasons

          Comment


            #6
            If there were a chance of recovering rent arrears (which seems very unlikely in this particular case) then the landlord can charge rent until a proper notice from the tenant has been given and it is safer to regard the property as occupied.

            If the landlord is unlikely to recover rent arrears then I it is imperative that a property that has been vacated is recovered in such a way as to minimise the risk of allegations of illegal eviction.

            I recall seeing a template letter or notice concerning abandonment of a property but it's not popping up in my searches.

            I am wondering if the local authority were prepared to confirm by letter the tenant had advised them that they had vacated the property and therefore Housing Benefit was no longer available. These details, and maybe a forwarding address, could I think only be disclosed to the landlord if the landlord had previously obtained a signed letter from the tenant giving authority to the Benefits Office to discuss rental and benefit issues with the landlord. I have previously posted a template of such an authority notice.

            With this information the landlord could safely post a notice to the former tenant at the property stating intent, for security reasons, to change the locks of the apparantly abandoned property.

            In the absence of a response (within a reasonable period) the locks will be changed on a specified date after which the landlord, to mitigate any claim against the tenant for unpaid rent, will attempt to relet the property.
            Vic - wicked landlord
            Any advice or suggestions given in my posts are intended for guidance only and not a substitute for completing full searches on this forum, having regard to the advice of others, or seeking appropriate professional opinion.
            Without Plain English Codes of Practice and easy to complete Prescribed Forms the current law is too complex and is thus neither fair to good tenants nor good landlords.

            Comment


              #7
              I spotted a neat idea when walking past an empty Housing association house recently. THey put a sticker over the key hole with a date it was applied and wording on it which I assume asks the tenant to contact the HA. I could not see up close to read the wording but it might be an idea to do the same.

              I usually place a sign in the window asking the tenant to get in touch.. also gets ppl asking about the empty place and may set up the next tenant!
              GOVERNMENT HEALTH WARNING: I am a woman and am therefore prone to episodes of PMT... if you don't like what I have to say you can jolly well put it in your pipe and SMOKE IT!!

              Oh and on a serious note... I am NOT a Legal person and therefore anything I post could be complete and utter drivel... but its what I have learned in the University called Life!

              Comment

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