Rent due and T not answering calls/ messages

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    Rent due and T not answering calls/ messages


    My tenant missed his rent payment and is now not answering my calls / messages- coming on to a week now.
    Before I assume he is avoiding me on purpose, can I try and reach him in a non-confrontational manner? Knock on his door? Call him at work?

    Or do you think I should go the formal route and write to him instead? I don't want to bring up Section 8 and all until I tried the softer approach first.

    Thank you and apologies if this has been asked before; I searched for similar threads so any links would be gratefully received as well.

    How far have they missed rent by - days, weeks?

    Could be a perfectly rational explanation - family crisis/bereavement, illness/hospital stay etc.


      Thanks LesleyAnne

      It's two weeks overdue which is why I want to find out first if there is a reasonable explanation for it, but it's hard when all calls go unanswered.
      I am just not sure whether I can go knocking on his door or call his work, unfortunately I cannot 'smell gas' at this particular property....


        There is no harm in asking for your rent, although I would probably advise against approach him through his work just yet.

        Knock on the door and see whether you get an answer. Ask neighbours if they have seen him/know if there is anything wrong. Whilst 2 weeks may seem like a long time, Section 8 cannot take effect until 2 months rent is iwed so you are long way off even thinking about that.

        Is tenant otherwise good - normally reliable payer, keeps property well, etc. When did tenancy begin? How do they normally pay?


          Tenancy has only started at the beginning of September, before then it was a joint tenancy but one of the tenants left, so a new agreement was drawn for the remaining tenant.
          Up until now all payments have been on time and the tenant seems a decent guy, always been responsive in the past which is why I am not sure what's happened this time.

          Am I right in thinking his 2 months rent becomes unpaid on the 3rd November? Rent is due on the 2nd of each month, been paid on 2nd September but not on 2nd October.
          Will I be able to serve a Section 8 even if the tenancy fixed term (6 months) has not been completed?


            Yes, 2 months rent owing is 2 missing payments.

            You can serve a S8 on rent arrears grounds then, but the amount owing must still be equal to 2 months at the time it goes to court. Tenant only need pay off a minimal amount before the hearing to nullify it.


              It now looks like the tenant is actively avoiding me so the next step will be to prepare for a section 8 notice.

              Do people think it's a good idea to write a couple of letters to the tenant beforehand to formalise my attempts at contacting him (so far this has been done only via phone/ sms)? Should I mention the Section 8 in the letters or just remind him of his obligations under the tenancy agreement and ask for payment of the overdue rent?

              Or should I just sit tight until the date of the Section 8 notice arrives then serve it?


                I would write to the T saying that you are concerned that he has not paid his rent and is two weeks in arrears. Include a rent statement with the letter.

                I have found that some Ts just can't talk to the LL when arrears start to arise but with a letter they have more time to compose an answer (be it the truth of not!).

                Something might genuinely have happened, such as a death in the family, that completely takes over.

                After 2 weeks write again, enclosing a rent statement, and state that "Your tenancy is at risk if you do not keep your rent up to date. If you need help or advice please contact ... Housing Benefits, CAB ...." and include the contact numbers of the places you have listed.

                Send a rent statement every week until they are 8 weeks in arrears.

                Then send a letter with a rent statement and a section 8. Say again how concerned you are about the arrears and that you now have no option to issue a section 8 notice.

                Be nice and understanding, even if you're not. Things might work out with your T and you can resume a normal relationship. If things don't work out, well, you've nothing then to reproach yourself about.

                Hope this helps.


                  Just out of curiosity, what referencing did you carry out before letting the property?
                  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.


                    Hi Paul_f
                    I used Tenant Verify (just the basic check) and it came back ok.

                    I have an update, the tenant has now been in touch very apologetic, explained he had a problem at work but it has now been resolved and promised to start paying again in a week's time (long story about his job).
                    I am not holding my breath but keeping my fingers crossed he is going to keep his word - will have to wait and see...thank you everyone who took the time to read my post and reply with advice.

                    Hope I won't be back here next week with the same problem!


                      What's the outcome?


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