Landlord’s post threatening repossession?

by Readers Question

8:59 AM, 31st July 2018
About 3 months ago

Landlord’s post threatening repossession?

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Landlord’s post threatening repossession?

We currently rent our home via a local estate agent, but we keep receiving letter for the landlord to state she is in arrears with the mortgage.

We have contacted our agents who keep saying they struggle to contact her and when they do she advises them everything is fine, but the latest one states if not resolved the property can be repossessed.

We have contacted our agent to request early termination and waiting to hear back as this is the 7/8 letter we have had this year.

I don’t believe she has notified her mortgage company that she is letting out the property as they are addressed to her at the address we live at are we entitled to contact the mortgage company to advise we rent the property or not?

Would we be entitled to terminate the tenancy agreement due to the letters?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Clare

 



Comments

Neil Patterson

9:07 AM, 31st July 2018
About 3 months ago

Hi Clare,

I would not draw too much attention to the letters as it is an offence to deliberately open someone else's mail without permission.
Please see Postal Services Act 2000 >> https://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2000/26/part/V/crossheading/offences-of-interfering-with-the-mail

"Interfering with the mail: general.

(1)A person commits an offence if, without reasonable excuse, he—

(a)intentionally delays or opens a postal packet in the course of its transmission by post, or

(b)intentionally opens a mail-bag.

(2)Subsections (2) to (5) of section 83 apply to subsection (1) above as they apply to subsection (1) of that section.

(3)A person commits an offence if, intending to act to a person’s detriment and without reasonable excuse, he opens a postal packet which he knows or reasonably suspects has been incorrectly delivered to him.

(4)Subsections (2) and (3) of section 83 (so far as they relate to the opening of postal packets) apply to subsection (3) above as they apply to subsection (1) of that section.

(5)A person who commits an offence under subsection (1) or (3) shall be liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months or to both."

Neil Patterson

9:13 AM, 31st July 2018
About 3 months ago

The lender may have made an error and not updated your landlord's address, but there is a fair chance the landlord does not have permission from the lender to rent the property. Although this does not directly reflect on you as the tenant.

At the end of the day it sounds like this has unsettled you to the extent you would prefer to find a new home you feel more confident with. There is no rush to make any decision as the lender could not just throw you out if it did take possession, but you may want to consider giving notice for the end of the fixed term assuming you are not already on a rolling statutory periodic tenancy.

Yvette Newbury

11:05 AM, 31st July 2018
About 3 months ago

Take a look at your tenancy agreement to find out when your tenancy ends and if you can terminate early. If the property is repossessed by the mortgage company they are likely to sell it. Either way this is your signal to vacate once you can, so you may want to be prepared.

Robert Mellors

11:11 AM, 31st July 2018
About 3 months ago

Opening someone else's mail is a criminal offence. If you receive mail that has come open in the post by accident, then that is perhaps a different matter.

Any post you receive addressed to someone other than yourself, should be marked "Return to Sender" and re-posted. Eventually some of these will get back to the mortgage company and they will then investigate further.

If unhappy or unsettled at your address for any reason, hand in your notice to end the tenancy at the end of the fixed term and move on. This is the advantage of having a 6 month tenancy, you can move on at the end of the fixed term if you wish to do so (and have given notice etc).

Ross McColl

11:18 AM, 31st July 2018
About 3 months ago

Who is the lender? If they are a buy to let only lender???
Are the letters from the mortgage company or the receiver?

Mark W

13:17 PM, 31st July 2018
About 3 months ago

I would accidentally open a letter sent to your address (covers the legal aspect).
Next forward a copy to the Agent saying that it concerns you. Next write to the lender saying that you opened their letter by accident, and the addressee no longer resides at this address. Add a copy of your letter to the agent with your letter to the lender to show you are taking reasonable steps to contact all concerned.
Send a follow up letter to the lender with cc to agent (5 days after your first letter) saying that you are very concerned and suggest that you pay your rent directly to the lender. The lender is highly likely to accept your offer. The agent will react very quickly cos they are failing to communicate with their client and will instantly loose their cut of your rent.
Having released your salvo, read your AST very carefully, then seek advice from CAB (take the AST and proof of rent payments with you).
The lender needs a Court Order to evict you. (By informing the lender you are giving notice that you are an interested party to any repossession action).
I am a good landlord and dislike any landlord who could have committed fraud by letting to you without telling the lender. (The agent is also at fault).
By informing the lender that you are an interested party, they should inform you of any Court action. If you see a repossession notice contact the Court with all your letters and tell them you are an interested party to the action.
Courts are not inclined to grant a repossession order if you have stated in writing that you will pay the rent to the lender or the Court.
Good luck (as bad landlords get us good landlords a poor reputation).
MarkW

Seething Landlord

13:19 PM, 31st July 2018
About 3 months ago

My understanding is that the procedure to be followed by the lender if the borrower is in breach of the mortgage conditions is for them to appoint LPA receivers to take possession of the property and the first that you would know about it officially would be an instruction to pay the rent to them instead of to the agent, possibly with notice of termination of the tenancy. Until that happens you do not need to do anything other than forward or return any letters addressed to the landlord. The letters that you should not have been aware of do not give you any enhanced right to end the tenancy before the end of the fixed term but there is no reason why it could not be ended by agreement with the landlord.

Mike Amapola

13:45 PM, 31st July 2018
About 3 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Mark W at 31/07/2018 - 13:17
I pretty much agree with mark W regarding what action to take. It will be interesting to see what, or if, the mortgage company may come up with -particularly if you were interested in staying in the house. Always keep copies of everything you receive or send. good luck.
P.S if your LL is a property 118 follower he/she may like to comment.......

Mark W

13:48 PM, 31st July 2018
About 3 months ago

My aim was to get in contact with the lender before they seek an LPA. (it saves them money and time)

Mark W

14:15 PM, 31st July 2018
About 3 months ago

My aim was to get in contact with the lender before they seek an LPA. (it saves them money and time)

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