Is my S21 valid?

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  • Is my S21 valid?

    Can you please help, my wife has a house that her ex-husband he was renting out and he took the deposit he has since moved to Scotland my wife had no involvement in renting the property, we have now taken over the house from him, we want to move in to the house but it has a tenant still in there can we use a s21 we haven’t had a deposit from the tenant or my wife’s ex-husband.
    We have offered to pay her deposit back if she moves out at the end of the two months’ notice.

  • #2
    What Sec 21?
    Allow tenants to protect their own deposits. I want free money when they do it wrong


    • #3
      Section 21 (4)(a)Periodic ?


      • #4
        Help Please

        Hi All,

        We need some advice please

        My wife has a house with her ex-husband it’s now been transferred to both our names.

        He rented the house out my wife had no involvement in this.

        We have asked the tenant for a copy of the tenancy agreement she has said she we put a copy in the post but not got a copy from here.

        Deposit don’t know what happened to this we have offered her money back but she declined this offer.

        We have given the tenant 2 month’s notice with a section 8 section 21 notice both types as we don't know what type of tenancy agreement she has.

        She was also late paying the rent and not paid the rent in full this month.

        What should we do next?

        Thanks for your advice Anthony


        • #5
          What form did the notice you gave her take?

          You need to find out what deposit was paid and where it is now. Deposits must be protected in a government scheme and the information from said scheme forwarded to the tenant. Failure to do this will render any notice you issue invalid.

          The tenant may also launch a claim for the return of the deposit and 1-3x the deposit value as compensation for failure to protect it. If you are now the official owners of the property, you have taken all all the obligations of the landlord and must comply with the legislation.


          • #6
            We sent her letters from two different post offices so we had proof of postage also gave a copy by hand, the house is still in my wife’s and ex-husband name but is just about done just needs his signature.

            We never got a deposit her ex-husband did we aren’t on the tenancy agreement.

            Is there a way round this for us, just seems so unfair on us.

            What can we do?


            • #7
              I don't think you understand - once you own the house, you will be the tenant's landlords. It does not matter whether you are named on the tenancy, as the transfer of ownership will transfer all the legal obligations to you.

              You must find out where the deposit is now, whether the Ex protected it, and if so, get that transferred to you as well.

              If the tenant decides to claim, the courts will not care whether it is unfair on you, only who is the landlord and therefore who is liable.

              If the deposit has not been protected, then the notice letters you have sent are invalid. Did the letters follow the correct format for notice? Do you know the start date of the tenancy to enable you to you give the correct expiry date for the notice? Even if the notice is correct, this is only the first step, and once it expires, you need to apply to court for a possession order. Unless the notice is 100% correct, and deposit protected, then your application will fail.

              Tenant does not have to leave on notice expiry.


              • #8
                Okay so what can we do if we can't get a copy of the tenancy agreement? We got notice templates of the internet giving them two months plus a couple of days, the start date of the tenancy was 1st April 2010, The deposit is long gone, If we protect the deposit do we have to give the tenant another two month’s notice?


                • #9
                  Two related threads have been merged.
                  I also post as Mars_Mug when not moderating


                  • #10
                    You can no longer protect the deposit late. New tighter rules came in last April, and your only hope now is to return the full deposit to the tenant and hope that they do not challenge you for non-protection.

                    Then issue a new S21 a few days later. You must return the deposit with proof, so get a signature when you hand it over, or write a covering letter with a cheque and proof of posting.

                    I assume the tenancy is now periodic. So you need to issue the Notice giving 2 clear months, and ending to co-incide with a rental period. There is a template here:


                    and guidance on how to issue here:


                    As you need to ensure the expiry allows the full 2 months and you do not have a tenancy agreement, you need to issue it with 3 months expiry, not just 2 months and a few days, as you must allow the overlap to cover every day of the month up to the unknown 2 month tenancy period date!


                    • #11
                      I think you can check with all 3 deposit protection companies if there actually is a deposit registered for that address. If there is one then that lets you off the hook on that point.
                      I offer no guarantee that anything I say is correct. wysiwyg


                      • #12
                        So basicly I have to give her another 2 months notice also return her deposit, do you know any companys who can do this work for me as I don't wan't to get it wrong again?


                        • #13
                          It's not that hard, if you can follow basic instructions, you can do it yourself.

                          First try and see if the tenant wants to use the deposit as rent.
                          If they do, get it in writing and signed by the tenant that the deposit is being used for this purpose.
                          If they say no, then you need to return it, again you need this in writing.

                          Ask the tenant to make a copy of the tenancy agreement, and pick it up yourself, or get a friend nearby to do so. If you have this, serving the Sec 21 is a bit easier.

                          If you can't get it, all is not lost, you just have to serve a Sec 21 with a "saving clause" in it.
                          If it looks like getting the tenancy agreement will take more than two weeks to obtain, just serve the one with the saving clause.
                          Allow tenants to protect their own deposits. I want free money when they do it wrong


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by thesaint View Post
                            First try and see if the tenant wants to use the deposit as rent.
                            If they do, get it in writing and signed by the tenant that the deposit is being used for this purpose.
                            Should we start again?
                            I still don't understand why the tenant should agree to the tenancy deposit being used for what it is supposed to be used...


                            • #15
                              I also doubt that tenant will be obliging and provide a copy of the TA, if they know LL is only going to use it to evict them. I wouldn't ...

                              Have you taken the advice above and checked all 3 deposit schemes to see if the deposit is indeed registered with one of them. There is always a chance it is there, and this can save you considerable hassle and time.

                              The most likely one for a DIY/Private landlord to use is the Deposit Protection Service. Then there is the Tenant Dispute Service and I believe you can search each site under the property address to see if any record of a deposit there.


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