Tenant not leaving - can she claim not to have received notice?

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    Tenant not leaving - can she claim not to have received notice?

    Having decided to sell up we gave our tenant the statutory 2 months notice (2 months ago) before the rent was due and were expecting her to be gone. However, there is no sign of this happening - rent has gone into the bank and she isn't responding to texts and phone calls.

    I'd like to think it would be a clear cut case of moving on to the next stage but have one major concern. I put the notice of termination through the door myself - I'm thinking she could just deny receiving.

    The other factor that may have a bearing is the nature of the tenancy. The tenant signed an AST when she moved in around 2 yrs ago, but nothing since. If we have to give notice again from scratch how does this need to be done.

    The annoying thing about this is we gave the tenant an extra month on top of the statutory and she has now stitched us up.

    Thanks in advance.
    Chris

    #2
    Please answer the following questions:

    When did the fixed term begin and end, exactly?

    When did you serve the section 21 notice and how did you word the part where you specified a date for it to expire?

    Do you have any evidence/witnesses at all for service?
    '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
      Many thanks for the swift reply.

      Afraid there were no witnesses to serving the notice.

      RE the fixed term. Will have to check later, in the region of 9-12 months ago (i.e. tenancy began 6mnths previous to that).
      Same goes for the notice - will check later.

      Comment


        #4
        Deposit, protection, prescribed, evidence of service? R
        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


          #5
          Originally posted by iquit View Post
          The annoying thing about this is we gave the tenant an extra month on top of the statutory and she has now stitched us up.
          So you gave her a 3 month notice to expire on a period end? i.e. the 15th of a month if the fixed term ended on the 15th and rent was paid monthly?
          All views posted reflect my personal opinion only and do not constitute professional advice which I am not qualified or knowledgeable enough to provide.

          Comment


            #6
            Method of Notice service?

            Comment


              #7
              OK, so the tenant has said they received the notice, but have been advised by shelter that it is not enforceable. Below is a copy of the notice sent. Any comments would be gladly received.

              Note: the rent is paid on the 25th of the month.



              What's more annoying is we let her have the place cheap from the start and didn't put the rent up

              Comment


                #8
                Whether its valid or not, depends on the following:

                1) when did the fixed term end? if it ended on the 24th of a month (i.e. 24th of october 2011), then your notice is invalid as it needs to be for after the last day of a period.

                2)Have you protected the deposit in an approved scheme and given the prescribed info to the tenant? (that is 20 odd pages). if you havent, then your S21 is invalid as well.

                Not sure how you also said earlier that you gave a month over what the law would require while your notice is for 2 months.
                All views posted reflect my personal opinion only and do not constitute professional advice which I am not qualified or knowledgeable enough to provide.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Your notice is invalid.

                  You need to serve it again, and it needs to expire "After" the 24th September 2012

                  Use this template:

                  http://www.letlink.co.uk/GeneralInfo...on/S21_4_A.pdf
                  Allow tenants to protect their own deposits. I want free money when they do it wrong

                  Comment


                    #10
                    It would certainly seem not to be valid.

                    If the tenancy began on 25th October 2010 and had no specified end date, then no matter how many months it was for, it would have ended on the 24th of XX 2011. Therefore each tenancy period after that would run from the 25th of the month to the 24th of the following month. Section 21(4)(a) requires your notice to expire 'after the last day of a tenancy period' therefore the wording on your notice should have been "I give you notice that I require possession of the abovenamed house after 24th June 2012"

                    So, you can either serve new notice before 24th July to expire after 24th September 2012 (I would use this template) http://www.letlink.co.uk/GeneralInfo...on/S21_4_A.pdf

                    and/or negotiate, it is suprising what the offer of a few hundred pounds can achieve so long as you remember that you can not make the tenant accept, so you have to make it good enough that they want to accept.

                    However, before you do anything (there is no hurry on the s21) can you please confirm
                    1) if a deposit was paid by the tenant
                    2) if & when you protected it in a government approved scheme
                    3) if and when you provided them with the schemes t&cs and details of how they recover their deposit (called prescribed information) - and can you prove that?

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by thesaint View Post
                      Your notice is invalid.

                      You need to serve it again, and it needs to expire "After" the 24th September 2012
                      I did read about it being the date before the rent day and this is what I intended to put. However, my wife had agreed a few extra days with the tenant so she insisted on putting that date. I did tell her at the time to put the 24th and tell her verbally that any extension was discretionary.

                      Oh well, lesson learnt. Thanks for the help.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by Snorkerz View Post
                        However, before you do anything (there is no hurry on the s21) can you please confirm
                        1) if a deposit was paid by the tenant
                        2) if & when you protected it in a government approved scheme
                        3) if and when you provided them with the schemes t&cs and details of how they recover their deposit (called prescribed information) - and can you prove that?
                        1 and 2, yes. 3 I would certainly struggle to prove it unless the system it is on has a record of this.
                        What are the implications / solutions if this is the case?

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by iquit View Post
                          I did read about it being the date before the rent day and this is what I intended to put.
                          Be aware that 'rent day' is not always the same as the last day of a tenancy period.
                          '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


                            #14
                            Sorry to jump in on Snorkerz.
                            Provide the prescribed information again(if you are uncertain, then we can provide a link). Send it by 1st class post from a Post Office, and get a certificate of posting.

                            Get it done this week, and only then should you send the Sec 21.
                            As long as you post the Sec 21 on or before the 19th July, you can use the dates I gave you above.

                            Send the Sec 21 from two post offices, and get a certificate of posting each time.

                            Also, deliver everything by hand with a witness.

                            I would also raise the rent using a Sec 13 rent increse form(If the tenancy agreement doesn't have a rent increase provision).
                            Allow tenants to protect their own deposits. I want free money when they do it wrong

                            Comment


                              #15
                              If you have not provided the prescribed information within 30 days of the start of the tenancy or 5th May 2012 (whichever is later) then you
                              a) Are exposed to a definate penalty if the tenant were to make a civil claim against you; and
                              b) Are unable to serve a valid section 21 notice.

                              There is no way around (a) but it is unlikley to happen.

                              For (b) serve the documents required by the scheme before you serve your section 21. If you used the DPS then there are 2 sets of documents
                              1) Prescribed information using this template.
                              2) Terms and Conditions provided here

                              You have to provide 2 copies of (1) so that the tenant has the option of signing one and returning it to you (but they don't have to!). That would be good proof of service, but if you think the tenant will not co-operate then I would be happy with posting it 1st class and getting a free certificate of posting from the local PO.

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