Abandonment/ Surrender problems

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    Abandonment/ Surrender problems

    Timeline of events: Tenant took property on 22/05/14 and has been persistently late paying rent (circa 1w+).

    Last payment was due on 22/09/14 and wasn't (still hasn't) been paid. S8 (grounds 10 & 11) and S21 were hand delivered by letting agent (+witness) on 13/10/2014. S8 said court proceedings would start on 04/11/2014 - S21 was 22/12/2014.

    Letting agent spotted that the house looked empty, so issued a written notice of inspection for 24h later. Next day the letting agent inspected the property and reported that all tenant's belongings had been removed from the house (with the exception of a dining table and x2 chairs).

    Letting agent made numerous attempts to contact the tenant and actually spoke to her on 16/10/2014. During this phone call the tenant said that she'd left the house and didn't want to continue with the tenancy. She said she'd drop the keys round the next day (17/10/14). Unfortunately she didn't.

    So I have some questions:

    1. Is her verbal statement that she's surrendered the property, coupled with her moving all her belongings out an actual "surrender" of the tenancy?

    2. Her 6 month tenancy actually ends on 22/11/14. She does have a guarantor. If I accept the surrender being 16/10/14 (when she verbally confirmed this). Is the rent still due to 22/11/2014?

    There is x1 month's rent + £100 in the deposit, so that'll nearly cover the rent, but not any cleaning or changing of locks. So I'm very much hoping, given the circumstances, that I don't need to go and apply to the court for a possession order.

    Any help is much appreciated.

    Thanks!

    QA1 – Is the rented property in England / Wales / Scotland / N Ireland?
    England
    QA2 – Is the AST for single tenancy ‘room only’ with shared facilities’ or for whole property with other tenants ‘joint & severally liable’?
    Whole property/ single (working) tenant
    QA3 – What date did current Tenancy Agreement start dd/mmm/year?
    22/05/2014
    QA4 – How long was initial fixed term 6/12/18/24 month?
    6 month
    QA5 – Does AST state rent is due weekly/4-weekly/per calendar month (what same date each month)?
    calendar month, in advance, 22nd
    QA6 – Did AST require a tenant damage deposit to be paid? If Y, please provide dd/mmm/year paid.
    Yes, in deposit protection. paid: 22/05/2014
    QA7 – If your query relates to landlord Notice for repossession (s8 or s21) or your Notice to Quit, please provide exact date sent / received.
    S8 and S21 both hand delivered (with witnesses) on 13/10/2014
    QA8 – Does your landlord live in the same property
    No

    #2
    Originally posted by Vaynag View Post
    So I have some questions:

    1. Is her verbal statement that she's surrendered the property, coupled with her moving all her belongings out an actual "surrender" of the tenancy? No, not unless she does so in writing and returns the keys to you (you don't have to accept surrender)

    2. Her 6 month tenancy actually ends on 22/11/14. She does have a guarantor. If I accept the surrender being 16/10/14 (when she verbally confirmed this). Is the rent still due to 22/11/2014? No. Once you accept the (conditional surrender of) keys, the tenancy ends there and then.

    There is x1 month's rent + £100 in the deposit, so that'll nearly cover the rent, but not any cleaning or changing of locks. So I'm very much hoping, given the circumstances, that I don't need to go and apply to the court for a possession order. Always use the deposit for dilapidations before rent arrears
    Hope this helps
    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


      #3
      Originally posted by PaulF View Post
      Hope this helps
      Thanks, it does.

      So is it therefore reasonable to assume that the tenant has abandoned the property? Moving all her belongings out and stating verbally to a third-party (the letting agency) that she's moved out seems reasonable?

      Failing that, her employer has been pretty helpful. If the employer stated that my property was no longer her home address, would that add any weight to me being able to class it as abandonment?

      Worst case though. If I file papers with the court relating to the Section 8 notice on 04/11/14 (very roughly) ho long would it take for me to actually get the property back? Without the keys is this the best course of action?

      Comment


        #4
        Vaynag, Thanks for using the New Poster sticky.

        If no alternative AST expiry date was mentioned in AST, then the fixed term T ends 21/11/14.
        During fixed term, T can only offer early surrender, which LL can accept or decline on his terms. Return of keys does not imply acceptance, if LL only accepts them for 'safe keeping'.
        Obviously T has a cash flow problem.
        Suggest the LA does another 24 hr inspection for purpose of compiling provisional move out inventory to assess possible deposit deductions.
        You write to G, informing of T rent paid to 21/10/14, explaining you will accept Ts implied surrender if rent is up to that date and T signs a Deed of Surrender by 21 Oct to end T on that date or T will end automatically on 21/10/14, meaning an other month rent will be due.

        May have the desired effects.

        Comment


          #5
          Can't help with the query but well done for A. Reading the Sticky B. Answering the questions in said sticky! Welcome to LLZ.
          "I'm afraid I didn't do enough background checks apart from checking her identity on Facebook" - ANON

          What I say is based on my own experience and research - Please don't take as gospel without first checking the gospel yourself.

          Comment

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