Changing the locks

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    Changing the locks

    Hi again friends!
    I am having trouble (as usual) with my 33 year old son (under a shorthold tenancy contract) who has an enduring mental illness and who is living in my HMO in a self contained flatlet. The whole house is up for sale (partly so I can buy a more suitable flat for my son) but despite at least 48 hours notice and reminders from my property manager, my son has never allowed access to his flatlet for viewings to take place so I am losing a lot of potential buyers. We don't have a spare key. I often need access for maintenance work - bleeding radiators, plumbers, electricians etc - but always have trouble. So we were thinking of calling in a locksmith to change the locks to his front door so that we will have a spare key and can get in when we need to. What is my legal position if after at least 48 hours notice we gain entry to his flat with the new spare key without his permission...???
    Thanks for your help - Premieji.

    #2
    In brief, you will be breaking the law.

    Comment


      #3
      Originally posted by premieji View Post
      Hi again friends!
      I am having trouble (as usual) with my 33 year old son (under a shorthold tenancy contract) who has an enduring mental illness and who is living in my HMO in a self contained flatlet. The whole house is up for sale (partly so I can buy a more suitable flat for my son) but despite at least 48 hours notice and reminders from my property manager, my son has never allowed access to his flatlet for viewings to take place so I am losing a lot of potential buyers. We don't have a spare key. I often need access for maintenance work - bleeding radiators, plumbers, electricians etc - but always have trouble. So we were thinking of calling in a locksmith to change the locks to his front door so that we will have a spare key and can get in when we need to. What is my legal position if after at least 48 hours notice we gain entry to his flat with the new spare key without his permission...???
      Thanks for your help - Premieji.
      Anyway, you can sell flat subject to his tenancy. It should not affect value much, even if prospective purchasers are precluded from inspecting it internally. Besides, he will have to vacate eventually if you want to rehouse him more suitably- remember discretionary ground 9 [suitable alternative accommodation].
      JEFFREY SHAW, solicitor [and Topic Expert], Nether Edge Law*
      1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
      2. Telephone advice: see http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=34638.
      3. For paid advice about conveyancing/leaseholds/L&T, contact me* and become a private client.
      4. *- Contact info: click on my name (blue-highlight link).

      Comment


        #4
        I thought you had already served notice on him, surely he should have gone by now or didn't you follow up with court proceedings

        You still cant change the locks though?

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by starlettings
          ah ha.....but if you needed to enter in an "EMERGENCY" ....suspect leak, overdue gas test, elec test.....could you not surly force the lock, replace it and give a new key keeping a spare.....

          Why can the T have its cake and eat it all the time?
          Its annoying.
          I say if they play fair, then do the same.......But tricky T = GAME ON

          If T makes my life hell.....oh my god it may happen to them!!!

          If a Tenant were to arrive back home to find that the lock had not been changed but in fact was not working due to the fact that there was a snapped off key in it ...you know, jammed right in it .....my bet is that they would either call agent immediately to get new lock fitted (and then you get a spare key !!!) or the T will call locksmith out himself and change lock ( if your ast is any good then it will state copy of new key to be handed over to LA/LL) .......
          Guess you are ust going to have to wait for someone to snap a key off in the lock ..................could take ages ......but could happen tomorrow...!!!LOL

          Simon
          A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.
          W.Churchill

          Comment


            #6
            Changing locks

            Originally posted by red40 View Post
            I thought you had already served notice on him, surely he should have gone by now or didn't you follow up with court proceedings

            You still cant change the locks though?
            Hi again - it's been great getting all your replies - apologies for delay in replying. I haven't been able to proceed with the Ct Order because I realised I had to get the electric checks done and get a landlord licence before I had safe grounds (you have to submit copies of the LL for a court order) - so everything delayed and dragging on. Now ready to proceed but son continuing to be a pain in the .... (not his fault). Thanks for all your comments - very helpful as usual. Kind regards Premieji.

            Comment


              #7
              Bingo!

              Originally posted by Rodent1 View Post
              If a Tenant were to arrive back home to find that the lock had not been changed but in fact was not working due to the fact that there was a snapped off key in it ...you know, jammed right in it .....my bet is that they would either call agent immediately to get new lock fitted (and then you get a spare key !!!) or the T will call locksmith out himself and change lock ( if your ast is any good then it will state copy of new key to be handed over to LA/LL) .......
              Guess you are ust going to have to wait for someone to snap a key off in the lock ..................could take ages ......but could happen tomorrow...!!!LOL

              Simon
              Hmmmmm!! Pause for thought...!!! Thanks muchly.

              Comment


                #8
                Hi premieji, is it a property that needs licensing?

                If it is then as you say you cant recover possession using section 21 until you have a licence or have made representations to obtain a licence.

                Originally posted by starlettings
                ah ha.....but if you needed to enter in an "EMERGENCY" ....suspect leak, overdue gas test, elec test.
                An overdue gas test (landlords safety check, I presume you mean) and/or an electric test are not emergencies and you have no right of entry to perform either of these duties.

                Comment


                  #9
                  I replied earlier, but my post has been moved to the "flippant" version.

                  My reply was not flippant, but thinking outside the box and I was quite serious:
                  It might be pushing things, but what if you entered the flat as a "family member" rather than "landlord"?

                  If not you, do you have another member of your family who could enter?

                  Even though you don't have a key, have you read the thread about "Bump Keys". I was intrigued by this, and having searched the internet, came across instructions on making your own. I've done this, made one, and tried it on some barrels we keep in the office. I opened 2 out of 6, and I bet if I bought a machine cut one, I would be able to do all 6.
                  On some things I am very knowledgeable, on other things I am stupid. Trouble is, sometimes I discover that the former is the latter or vice versa, and I don't know this until later - maybe even much later. Because of the number of posts I have done, I am now a Senior Member. However, read anything I write with the above in mind.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    You said an overdue gas test star lettings, you have no right of entry to carry this out.

                    An overdue gas test, which again I suspect you mean a landlords gas safety check is not an emergency. Whereas a gas leak is, but you have suggested to a poster that a gas leak, an overdue gas test and electric test are emergencies, when in fact only one of those is an actual emergency.

                    Comment

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