Robert Mellors

Registered with
Saturday 26th October 2013

Latest Comments

Total Number of Property118 Comments: 1014

Robert Mellors

23:37 PM, 14th October 2019
About 6 days ago

UC sending letters for landlord to non-existent address

I've got examples of them writing to my tenants AT MY HOME ADDRESS, instead of at the tenant's address!

Just two weeks ago I received post from them that was mailed in April 2019, as they addressed it to my old address from 8 years ago, and it then took 5 months to get re-directed to me!... Read More

Robert Mellors

10:06 AM, 4th October 2019
About 2 weeks ago

Pros vs Cons of having UC tenants?

Although it may be thought that UC tenants are somehow worst than professional tenants, this is not always the case and there are some very good tenants on UC, BUT, there are many who are on UC due to drug, alcohol, mental health, or behavioural problems, or are unable to get a job due to criminal records, or are actually too lazy to get a job. However, do not stereotype everyone on UC as being within these groups, everyone's situation is different, (and there are all these issues within the working population as well). It is very difficult to judge a potential tenant, and say for sure that they are going to look after the property and pay the rent on time, so you need to do as many checks as possible to ensure that you are happy to accept them as tenants.

However, even after you have satisfied yourself that the tenant themselves are suitable, you then have to consider the UC system itself. UC is a disaster for most landlords:
UC is usually paid direct to the tenant, not to the landlord.
UC do not accept correspondence from landlords.
UC do not accept phone calls from landlords.
UC has periods when the tenant won't get any UC, e.g. the initial waiting period, and if they get two lots of wages in a "benefit period" (e.g. paid early due to a bank holiday).
UC often ignore the UC47 (alternative payment arrangement) applications sent in by landlords.
UC misunderstand or mis-apply their own rules, regulations, and guidance.
The complaints process against a UC decision (or maladministration) has multiple levels and can take up to 3 years for a final decision.
Even when a complaint of UC maladministration is upheld, i.e. UC found to have broken the law, in many cases compensation is not being paid to the landlord.

Check out the posts from Caridon Landlord Solutions, and Bill Irving of UC Advice, as they specialise in dealing with UC problems. See also the posts from landlord Mick Roberts who has vast experience of UC claiming tenants (and the comparison with HB claiming tenants).... Read More

Robert Mellors

13:53 PM, 17th September 2019
About a month ago

Section 21 abolition stinks!

I've also had tenants who save their urine, or have not cleaned up poo and vomit, and it can be disgusting trying to deal with this. There are specialist cleaning companies that can deal with this.

Sometimes it is due to mental health problems, and when I was a Housing Officer for a local authority I saw a flat where the tenant did the same thing, except the toilet was not broken, he simply had delusions about aliens coming up through the toilet when it is flushed, therefore he did not flush! - In this instance a specialist bio-hazard clean up team had to be called in while the tenant was sectioned under the mental health act.

However, when it is a private tenant and private landlord, such behavior can cause a problem for the landlord as he may need to carry out repairs, or get gas safety checks done, etc, and it is not reasonable for contractors/tradesmen to work in such conditions. The landlord may then have no other option but to evict the tenants, and this is where the absence of a s21 procedure could lead to an inability to rectify the problem. I guess the landlord would only be able to rely on the s8 process in relation to repeated breaches of conditions of the tenancy agreement?... Read More

Robert Mellors

14:36 PM, 5th September 2019
About 2 months ago

Have you written off tenant rent arrears too soon?

What's the difference between the "Letter Before Action" and the "Notice Before Action"? Is this different terminology for the same document, or are these separate documents?... Read More

Robert Mellors

16:20 PM, 6th August 2019
About 3 months ago

Acquired Non-Responsive HMO tenant?

Reply to the comment left by Simon Williams at 06/08/2019 - 11:28Spot on Simon, good summary of the tenancy v licence issues. However, IMO, the service of a valid s21 Notice (or any other type of notice, e.g. s8 or NTQ) may depend on the validity of the documentation issued by the previous owner and whether service of it can be proven (AST, Licence, gas cert, EPC, deposit protection, How To Rent booklet, EICR, etc, etc). Indeed the actions of the previous owner could also be relevant (i.e. any acts or omissions that could invalidate a s21 Notice).
As this is not straightforward in the circumstances described, (and I've not seen all the paperwork), then in order to avoid potential issues at court, then I would recommend biting the bullet and forking out for professional legal advice, as you certainly don't want to possession claim to fail at the court hearing.... Read More