When can I get rid of this problem tenant?

by Readers Question

3 years ago

When can I get rid of this problem tenant?

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When can I get rid of this problem tenant?

I have a tenant who is on a 6 month AST which started on August 23rd. The tenancy agreement was signed by her and her boyfriend but this relationship has broken down, I understand with police involvement. When can I get rid of this problem tenant

The problems I have had so far are as follows:-

  • Two internal doors removed and left for around two weeks, the doors have now been put back on with the hinges in different places, the doors are six panel in white gloss and the panels have been repainted in black.
  • There has been a dog in the house in the past which they said they were just looking after but I have been to the house today and there was dog mess in the garden so looked through the window and was greeted by a puppy looking back!
  • The yard area has bits of furniture and empty boxes littering it and looks a mess.

What are my options with this tenant?

I would like her out ASAP as I don’t think it’s going to end up good.

Can I evict her now as she has breached her tenancy agreement with having a dog or do I have to wait and issue a section 21 two months before her 6 month tenancy is up?

I have been trying to manage my properties alone as I have the time but what with this issue and another tenant that is under a section 21 I think a good letting agent might be the way to go.

Thanks in anticipation

David

Comments

Mark Alexander

3 years ago

Hi David

The reality is that unless your tenants fall two or more months into arrears you will probably struggle to persuade a judge to give you a possession order until the initial six month tenancy has expired.

Why not serve section 21 now to expire on 23rd Feb 2015? That alone could focus the mind of your tenant. Before you do that though, why not arrange to pop around to see her for a sympathetic chat? She might feel just as trapped by her tenancy as you do.

If she wants out, or if you can somehow incentivise her to leave (nicely of course) then you will need a Tenancy Surrender Agreement - see >>> http://www.property118.com/surrender-tenancy-agreement/67939/

If she doesn't want to leave then you need to remind her of her obligations. If you don't like what she has to say, that's when you serve the section 21 notice, which of course you will have pre-prepared and with you at the time of the meeting. For your own protection (e.g. accusations of assault or indecency) I suggest you take a witness with you to your meeting, preferably a woman. Personally, I would ask my stepsons 20 year old girlfriend to accompany me as she would be a completely independent witness.

I hope that helps and please let me know how you get on.
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david Earnshaw

3 years ago

I dint want to issue a section 21 at this early stage as I was worried about any damage that may occur and that she may stop paying her rent top up ( she is on housing benefit which is paid direct to me, which I know she can change) which she has been late with every month

Mark Alexander

3 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "david Earnshaw" at "24/10/2014 - 19:41":

OK I get that so serve at the end of month 4 then, but please try my other suggestion first.
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david Earnshaw

3 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Mark Alexander" at "24/10/2014 - 20:00":

Thanks Mark

Renovate To let

3 years ago

Just one thing. If you let to the two tenants one joint and several AST then they are both still liable for rent and damage. There is one tenancy not two. He can't just leave and be rid of the responsibility and she can't just have a tenancy of her own if she feels like it.

Ideally you need to meet both of them, explain this and see what they want - you might be able to get a surrender from them based on their desire to go their separate ways. Don't agree to split rent as you must continue with the contract as is - they both are responsible for all the rent.

Note that they are fully within their rights to live as they please during the tenancy but have to hand you the property back clean and undamaged at the end.

Eviction Group

3 years ago

Marks advice is sound. IMO she has already displayed total disregard for the T&C's of the tenancy, the Landlord/Tenant relationship is already a sinking ship here. Serve section 21 notice now and get your ducks in row!

Renovate To let

3 years ago

My point was that while I agree an early surrender would be a great outcome, the female left in the house cannot provide such a surrender as the tenancy is joint and so requires all 3 parties - both tenants and the landlord - to agree.

david Earnshaw

3 years ago

There is a bit more to this story than I previously told! She was a tenant in anothe house I have and had been with me for 2.5 years in a a two bed back to back, as she was on housing benefit which was paid direct to me I didn't have any problems with her apart from a couple of doors which came off their hinges ( is there a recurring theme here?) she then got involved with her boyfriend ( now her ex) and wanted a bigger house as her child was getting bigger and wished for a new start with her boyfriend and child, after putting her off for a while I had a bigger newly refurbished house that had come available so let them have it, I must admit that I had miss givings at this time but wanted to give them a new start together, but this all fell apart within a month of them moving in. I should have listened to myself in the first place and said no but gave them the benefit of the doubt and now just want her out.

Landlord Geoff

3 years ago

David
Just bite the bullet and issue section 21 now.
it will have 2 effects;
Give tenant(s) more time to find alternative accommodation
Indicates that you are serious

If at the end of the day if you finish up out of pocket put it down to experience and move on
I am based in Leeds, if you want to contact me direct please do it through my website or twitter
PS. There is no sentiment in being a landlord - it's a business!!

david Earnshaw

3 years ago

If she doesn't leave at the end of here tenancy / sec 21 what do I need to do ? How do I get a court order?

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