S8 - When does the tenancy end?

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    S8 - When does the tenancy end?

    Say I have a tenant who has stopped paying the rent and owes 2months rent so I issue a S8 notice (Near start of fixed term so S21 no use).

    If the tenant moves out and returns the keys before expiry of the S8 has the tenancy ended?

    #2
    Yes, if you accept their surrender (and subject to a claim for illegal eviction - so long as the court agrees there was a surrender). A 'deed of surrender' would give peace of mind.

    If the tenant claims the tenancy is over but you haven't accepted then he's onto a loser - the s8 is not a notice to quit and the tenant can't unlilaterally end the tenancy during the fixed term.

    I'll throw my own thought in though - what if you served the s8 with a deed of surrender attached - I guess there is a risk that could be viewed by the tenant as a pre-acceptance of their surrender.

    Comment


      #3
      Originally posted by daveg View Post
      Say I have a tenant who has stopped paying the rent and owes 2months rent so I issue a S8 notice (Near start of fixed term so S21 no use).

      If the tenant moves out and returns the keys before expiry of the S8 has the tenancy ended?
      If the tenant does this then it arguably comprises an implied offer to surrender the tenancy early. An offer only, which the LL is free to accept or reject. If he accepts, by re-taking possession, then arguably there will be a surrender by operation of law. This is when both parties' actions are inconsistent with the tenancy continuing; but often the situation may not be entirely black and white (for example, a T might appear to have vacated, but many of his belongings remain in the property; it's possible the T might simply have gone on an extended holiday and it would be inadvisable to assume he's made an offer to surrender).

      In the event of a dispute, a court will look at the totality of both parties' actions when deciding whether or not there has been a surrender by operation of law.

      A formal surrender is effected by both parties signing/executing a Deed of Surrender.

      A s.8 notice has no effect on the tenancy. All it does is entitle the LL to apply for possession after notice expiry. It doesn't entitle the T to walk away from the tenancy or unilaterally end his liability for rent.

      In other words, the short answer to your question is no: if the tenant moves out and returns the keys before expiry of the s.8 notice this does not, in itself, end the tenancy.

      Comment


        #4
        Snorkerz, westminster,

        Thanks for the detailed replies I now have the info to reply to a strange email:-

        Have had a great tenant for nearly 3 1/2 years, rent always paid on time, until this month. Have tried calling and texting him without luck so sent a email saying "Hope all is ok as it is not like you to miss a rent payment"

        He replied with "Sorry but you need to issue me a Section 8 and I will leave". He is a fit, working, single young man so I cant see the council helping him.

        Comment


          #5
          He won't leave when you have a Sec 8.
          Does he have a periodic tenancy?
          Allow tenants to protect their own deposits. I want free money when they do it wrong

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by thesaint View Post
            He won't leave when you have a Sec 8.
            Does he have a periodic tenancy?
            No - over 6 months of fixed term left.

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by daveg View Post

              He replied with "Sorry but you need to issue me a Section 8 and I will leave". He is a fit, working, single young man so I cant see the council helping him.
              I also highly doubt he'll offer to surrender.

              If you want to evict him, there is little point in serving a s.8 notice until you can cite ground 8, the mandatory rent-related ground, in the notice. If rent is payable monthly, there must be at least two months' rent owing and unpaid to fulfill ground 8. (Rent is owing and unpaid if it is not paid on the day it falls - e.g. rent due on the 1st of the month, and T doesn't pay on 1st Jan or 1st Feb; on 2nd Feb there is two months' owing and unpaid).

              If the T is hoping to qualify for council housing, AFAIK they will not help if the T makes himself voluntarily homeless or if he is evicted via s.8 procedure.

              Comment


                #8
                Does your tenancy agreement state that you can use a Sec 8 within the fixed term?
                Allow tenants to protect their own deposits. I want free money when they do it wrong

                Comment


                  #9
                  Just as a point of interest I issue Section 8's regularly before the 2 month point. I find it a very effective way of getting the tenants attention and often the problems stop there. But even more interesting is the fact that I have been to court many times and never once lost even though the mandatory grounds had not been satisfied. By the time i've got to court i've always been owed 2/3/4 months rent anyway regardless of the position at S8 date, and to date have always had a very understanding Judge. But I am sure my day will come! I think it also helps me that tenants never actually turn up for me at these things!

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by jghomer View Post
                    Just as a point of interest I issue Section 8's regularly before the 2 month point. I find it a very effective way of getting the tenants attention and often the problems stop there. But even more interesting is the fact that I have been to court many times and never once lost even though the mandatory grounds had not been satisfied. By the time i've got to court i've always been owed 2/3/4 months rent anyway regardless of the position at S8 date, and to date have always had a very understanding Judge. But I am sure my day will come! I think it also helps me that tenants never actually turn up for me at these things!
                    It is possible to add g8 onto a section 8 claim before the hearing if the unpaid goes above 2 months.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by Snorkerz View Post
                      It is possible to add g8 onto a section 8 claim before the hearing if the unpaid goes above 2 months.

                      Funny enough I have tried that one in the past and failed :-(

                      The court said that G8 had to be satisfied when I gave notice and could not be added after a hearing had been applied for. I guess its down to court/judge discretion though. I guess it's worked for you tho :-(

                      Anyway I didn't mean to hijack the thread with this stuff so i'll stop chirping now.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Thanks for the advice.

                        I am not too worried about waiting for 2 months rent to be owing this will probably happen on 2/2/13.

                        I havent got the tenancy agreement to hand but am concerned that it probably doesnt mention S8 being allowed during the fixed term - is this a problem?

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by daveg View Post
                          I havent got the tenancy agreement to hand but am concerned that it probably doesnt mention S8 being allowed during the fixed term - is this a problem?
                          You need to have a "forfeiture clause" that enables you to apply to the courts for possession at anytime in the event of a breach of tenancy by using a S.8 Notice. You should always include Grounds 10 & 11 with Ground 8 just in case you need them. Notice periods vary but 14 days is the one in this case.
                          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


                            #14
                            Paul_f,

                            Thanks for the info. Will just have to hope nobody notices if the worst happens.

                            I always thought notice period grounds for eviction etc were determined by the laws relating to ASTs and not what the tenancy agreement stated.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Originally posted by daveg View Post

                              I always thought notice period grounds for eviction etc were determined by the laws relating to ASTs...
                              They are, but s.7(6) Housing Act 1988 says

                              (6) The court shall not make an order for possession of a dwelling-house to take effect at a time when it is let on an assured fixed term tenancy unless—
                              (a) the ground for possession is Ground 2 or Ground 8 in Part I of Schedule 2 to this Act or any of the grounds in Part II of that Schedule, other than Ground 9 or Ground 16; and
                              (b) the terms of the tenancy make provision for it to be brought to an end on the ground in question (whether that provision takes the form of a provision for re-entry, for forfeiture, for determination by notice or otherwise).

                              Comment

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