Section 21 & Eviction - Advice Please

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    Section 21 & Eviction - Advice Please

    I would appreciate some help on the following problem. I no longer want the tenant to be housed at my property.

    Tenant has assured shorthold tenancy agreement, 6 months, signed and dated 18/06/06. I attended the property on Friday 17th November 2006 to serve the notice for 18th November 2006, expires 18th January 2007. Her boyfriend answered, was told tenant was out. I physically handed him the notice. I also had a witness with me who watching me handing it over. The witness took a photograph, with boyfriends consent, of me holding the paperwork outside the front door. The boyfriend is partly showing on the photograph and it can be seen that the front door is open.

    I am not sure if the tenant will leave on or before the 18th January but am going to the courts just to be sure that if I encounter problems I have started the legal side for the repossesion of my property.

    Visited Liverpool County Court and submitted 'claim form for possesion of property' and 'particulars for claim of possession'. The court have replied with a N206B 'notice of issue (possesion claim)'. The date of hearing is 9th January 2007.

    The tenant is a single parent with 2 children. The value of rent from an independant surveryor is £325/month ie £75/wk. Tenant is paid HB @ £60/wk and has never paid the top up. I have wrote to her to state that she is in arrears but she never responds or makes payment. She has paid deposit of £240, low amount as I (unfortunately) allowed her to move in even though she was £85 short on the deposit. She never paid the reminder of the deposit despite my attempts.

    Her shorthold tenancy started 31/10/05 for 6 months. Unfortunately I renewed it, due to lack on knowledge on my part, for another 6 months 18/06/06. I was advised later on that I did not need to give a renewal as it would be deemed a rolling tenancy agreement.

    Please can you help with the following points:

    - The HB only covers part and she has never paid the top up. I will not try to claim back the arrears (too much like hard work) but I do not want to give her the deposit back either. Can I legally withheld deposit payment on the basis that arrears are due?

    - Is it advisable to send a reminder that she has to leave property, say 18th December, when there is a month to go. Is there any specific wording I should use in the letter.

    - Court has asked 'if you intend to rely on witness statements you must file them in the court office and serve copies on all parties no later than 2 clear working days before hearing'. Should I ensure I supply a witness statement from myself and the witness that saw me hand over the section 21. Do I need to send them a copy of the photograph. Can I find a sample witness statement somewhere so I will know the legal wording that needs to be on the papers.

    - The case is set for 9th January, which is earlier than the date she has to leave. Should I attend on the day and ask for the case to be adjourned, or should I contact the court earlier and ask for the case to be changed to a later date.

    Are there any other points I need to consider

    Many thanks for your time and help.

    #2
    There are a number of points here that you need to check to ensure your case does not founder

    Originally posted by isp View Post
    I would appreciate some help on the following problem. I no longer want the tenant to be housed at my property.

    Tenant has assured shorthold tenancy agreement, 6 months, signed and dated 18/06/06. Ignore the date of the agreement - what is the start date of the tenancy I attended the property on Friday 17th November 2006 to serve the notice Was this a section 21 Notice? for 18th November 2006, expires 18th January 2007. If your tenancy started on the 18th of a month the notice should expire on 17th of the month Her boyfriend answered, was told tenant was out. I physically handed him the notice. I also had a witness with me who watching me handing it over. The witness took a photograph, with boyfriends consent, of me holding the paperwork outside the front door. The boyfriend is partly showing on the photograph and it can be seen that the front door is open. IMHO the photograph was intrusive and not necessary.
    I am not sure if the tenant will leave on or before the 18th January but am going to the courts just to be sure that if I encounter problems I have started the legal side for the repossesion of my property.

    Visited Liverpool County Court and submitted 'claim form for possesion of property' and 'particulars for claim of possession'. The court have replied with a N206B 'notice of issue (possesion claim)'. The date of hearing is 9th January 2007.

    There seems to be an absolute cock up here! Do others agree? The court should not have a hearing on the 9th January 2007 for a notice requiring possession after 18th January.

    The tenant is a single parent with 2 children. The value of rent from an independant surveryor is £325/month ie £75/wk. Tenant is paid HB @ £60/wk and has never paid the top up. I have wrote to her to state that she is in arrears but she never responds or makes payment. She has paid deposit of £240, low amount as I (unfortunately) allowed her to move in even though she was £85 short on the deposit. She never paid the reminder of the deposit despite my attempts.

    Her shorthold tenancy started 31/10/05 for 6 months. Unfortunately I renewed it, due to lack on knowledge on my part, for another 6 months 18/06/06. I was advised later on that I did not need to give a renewal as it would be deemed a rolling tenancy agreement.

    Please can you help with the following points:

    - The HB only covers part and she has never paid the top up. I will not try to claim back the arrears (too much like hard work) but I do not want to give her the deposit back either. Can I legally withheld deposit payment on the basis that arrears are due? Yes - if your tenancy agreement states you may do this

    - Is it advisable to send a reminder that she has to leave property, say 18th December, when there is a month to go. Is there any specific wording I should use in the letter. Again a bit of a cock up!! If you had not jumped the gun you could have sent a reminder letter pointing out that if she does not leave on the specified date you will have to seek a Possession Order from the Court and this will incur her in paying Court fees etc

    - Court has asked 'if you intend to rely on witness statements you must file them in the court office and serve copies on all parties no later than 2 clear working days before hearing'. Should I ensure I supply a witness statement from myself and the witness that saw me hand over the section 21. Do I need to send them a copy of the photograph. Can I find a sample witness statement somewhere so I will know the legal wording that needs to be on the papers. [color=red] Hope you have sent in all the basic documents such as the rental agreement to support your claim[/red]

    - The case is set for 9th January, which is earlier than the date she has to leave. Should I attend on the day and ask for the case to be adjourned, or should I contact the court earlier and ask for the case to be changed to a later date. see previous

    Are there any other points I need to consider

    Many thanks for your time and help.
    .......
    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


      #3
      Well I'm no expert on what you can and cannot do, but one thing is certain, if a court hearing is held on the 9th Jan to consider the issue of a possession order when the tenant does not legally have to leave until AFTER THE 17th of January, the Judge will invariably throw the case out and you will have lost your 150 quid. The fact that you applied to the court for your possession order before the tenant was legally required to vacate your property is sufficient for the Judge to do this, which, if you are appling in accordance with section 21 is why the judge has asked for a hearing to explain his judgement. Normally, if the paperwork is correct, the judge considers this without a hearing and your possession order appears in the post.

      Your tenant may still go voluntarily on the date you have given, but if I were you, I should serve another section 21 notice as soon as you can, giving a further two months notice (plus a day or three to be on the safe side) and if said tenant has not vacated when the notice period expires, then apply on the N5b to the court.
      Please note what it says at the bottom of this post: others may have better ideas.


      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


        #4
        Tenancy signed 18th June 2006 started the same date.

        Thanks for your comments. Tried to quote in this post but none of the text came up so I could not add comments to red text on previous quote.

        It was a Section 21 Notice that was served on 17th November 2006.

        Based on this Section 21 should she be vacating the property on 17th or 18th January. The notice was not served on 18th November as this was a Saturday.

        You suggest I omit the photograph from the evidence.

        Regarding the court, I was advised to submit the papers just in case she did not leave on the required date. I was told it can take up to 2 months for the court to hear the case. How do you suggest I rectify the matter, without losing £150.

        The tenancy states '...the deposit will be held by the landlord and refunded at the end of the term.. less any reasonable deductions... to cover any costs incurred or losses caused to him by breaches of the obligations in this agreement...' It is a standard agreement refers to losses and breaches. The fact that the tenant never paid the full amount of rent is a breach of the agreement as the tenants first obligation is to 'pay the rent at all times'. I think this is covered, thanks for that.

        Can you explain why I need to serve another section 21 notice. This would make the original one void, so lengthening the time she will be allowed to stay at the property.

        Based on these cock ups what do you suggest I do now?

        Comment


          #5
          I am going to put a spanner in the works here.

          The S.21 Notice (if that was what it was) was served on the boyfreind who is clearly not the tenant. If the intention was to serve it personally on the tenant then it failed. Is a judge going to accept that the correct Service was expedited - I fear not? What's more the photo only emphasises the mistake!
          The advice I give should not be construed as a definitive answer, and is without prejudice or liability. You are advised to consult a specialist solicitor or other person of equal legal standing.

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by Paul_f View Post
            I am going to put a spanner in the works here.

            The S.21 Notice (if that was what it was) was served on the boyfreind who is clearly not the tenant. If the intention was to serve it personally on the tenant then it failed. Is a judge going to accept that the correct Service was expedited - I fear not? What's more the photo only emphasises the mistake!
            I thought that may be so but wasn't absolutely sure - hence my earlier comments! If it had been served by recorded delivery then I believe (but stand to be corrected!) that a S21 notice served in that way would be valid if accepted by the boyfriend and not the tenant!
            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
              Well, with somebody as qualified and experienced as Paul F putting yet another spanner in the works, it is obvious that you have made many mistakes, any one of which will enable the judge to throw your case out.
              If you are not prepared to engage professional legal assistance to sort this one out for you - and if you do make sure the solicitor concerned is experienced in landlord and tenant law-like the advertisers on this board, I suggest you seriously consider my earlier advice.
              If you allow the case to proceed, you will only loose your £150. You might get this refunded if you withdraw the case but I don't know. What is certain that it is best to start again as I recommended before with the correct service of another S21 notice, giving a further two months notice (plus a bit). If this is not served during the duration of the fixed term of the AST - when it has gone periodic, you have to consider giving notice to end on a rent day which could mean that up to almost three months notice is required! Unfortunately it will mean your tenant remaining in residence for much longer than you originally anticipated, but this is the law! When the new notice period has expired, then you apply to the court with an N5b.

              P.P.
              Last edited by P.Pilcher; 10-12-2006, 16:43 PM. Reason: yet another typo
              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


                #8
                Looks like I need to serve another Section 21 thats for sure and I have messed up.

                Any suggestions on a reputable local solicitor to advise me?

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by isp View Post
                  Looks like I need to serve another Section 21 thats for sure and I have messed up.

                  Any suggestions on a reputable local solicitor to advise me?
                  Just found some links on this website to legal advisors.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by isp View Post
                    Just found some links on this website to legal advisor's.
                    Why not contact jeffrey who is a very experienced solicitor & part of this forum.

                    Good luck.

                    Comment

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