My tenants want to apply for social housing?

My tenants want to apply for social housing?

0:04 AM, 8th March 2023, About A year ago 39

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Hello, I am a private landlord. I had my tenants before 2016. They have been on a rolling tenancy since the AST fixed term expired.

I also had a ‘Deed of Guarantee’ signed by their guarantor when they moved in. We have been on good terms with each other.

My tenants have small children. They are claiming benefits for rent but I don’t know what they are claiming (Universal Credit, Housing Benefit …?). The current cost of living hit them hard. They would like to apply for social housing.

They have asked me to give them a notice of possession (they call it a ‘leave notice’), so that they can get into the queue for social housing. They think this the most straightforward way to do it. They also promised to pay me the rent while they are on the waiting list for social housing.

If I don’t/can’t give them the notice, then they will not pay the rent. So, I would be forced to give them the leave notice.

I am not clear if I should give them a notice and how it will affect me. I need the rent payments as this is my main income.

I do not want rent arrears. On the other hand, are there any disadvantages me (as a Landlord) giving them an eviction notice before my tenants stop paying their rent (going into arrears)?

What happens if they stop paying the rent after I give them a (Section 21) notice?

Thank you,


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Robin Hood

11:00 AM, 9th March 2023, About A year ago

Reply to the comment left by Graham Bowcock at 08/03/2023 - 10:23
To be honest no fault s.21 evictions are due to be abolished soon leaving only s.8 eviction due to rent arrears. If I can recall clearly there are around 15000 people on the council housing list in London and not a single property is available due to existing council tenants not moving out. Furthermore councils are also having to house refugees who are are in direct competition with their British counterparts although refugee accomodation tends to be provided by the home office rather than councils. I don't normally advise landlords but I sense their is blackmail going in with the tenant threatening to stop paying rent. Tell the tenants that they are very lucky to have a decent landlord and if the refuse to pay rent the would be evicted very quickly, even more quicker if the enforcement was carried out by high court bailiffs as opposed to county court bailiffs who don't give much notice. The tenants would be circumventing a situation by playing the homelessness card when they are exactly homeless. You could of course just give them a s.21 notice as a result of them holding you to ramson by demanding something that is not genuine, 'you wanting them to leave' so you get better tenants in to replace them. Tell the tenants that council list is already very long and the reality is they would be on that this for years and more likely get stuck in a hotel for a very long time. There best bet for social housing would be to register with housing associations. In London there are over 100 of these and a simple Google search would provide numbers. If the have children this may shove them up the queue a little. If they are outside London there may be a better chance of council or housing association properties but there is pressure on all councils across the UK.

Reluctant Landlord

12:04 PM, 9th March 2023, About A year ago

or just say no to the S21 request saying that they need to give proper notice instead if they wish to move like the AST states. (If they then write they want you to issue a S21 to help - keep this for later evidence if required..)
Put the ball back in their court.
You can still request direct payments stating to DWP and Council that they are are looking to withold rent payments to you and you as a concerned LL wish to ensure that they do not become homeless as a result. Remind UC and the council they have a duty to PREVENT homelessness and this is the best way of doing it.
You could then formally write to your tenants stating the exact (and proper!) way they should apply for social housing if the want to join the list and at this point you can also highlight what the council look at as part of the decision making process/duty/allocation (ie there are no rent arrears..)
This negates you from any accusation of playing along with their 'game', sets out what they need to do if they want to get on the list and how they need to behave to be considered worth of an offer from the council.
Call it tenant education!!
If they choose to 'turn rogue' from then on in any way straight to a S21 & S8 if needed. They have shot themselves in the foot so their problem not yours. Get them out and start again. Or sell up while vacant.

Pendulum Harthill

15:23 PM, 9th March 2023, About A year ago

Don't serve the notice. They can approach their local authority with affordability issues without a notice being in place. You must be careful serving a notice under these circumstances as it could be viewed as collusion by the LA. Also the tenants could be found intentionally homeless for requesting the notice. You won't be doing them any favours. If they are struggling with rent costs they can apply for a discretionary housing payment from the LA benefits team. There are also hardship funds that can be tapped into. If they stop paying rent to enact a notice, this can also be viewed negatively and may exempt them from the housing register anyway. In the current housing crisis it could take months to years for them to secure social housing and they should not be relying on this for rehousing.

I hope that all makes sense


16:36 PM, 10th March 2023, About A year ago

Reply to the comment left by Luke P at 08/03/2023 - 12:13
Thank you Luke. Having read your comment again, I am a bit confused.

Are you saying Landlord cannot apply for Direct Rent Payment if they have already served Section 21 notice?

Reluctant Landlord

17:42 PM, 10th March 2023, About A year ago

Reply to the comment left by MFL at 10/03/2023 - 16:36
you can apply for a DRR anytime.

13:34 PM, 11th March 2023, About A year ago

Reply to the comment left by Luke P at 08/03/2023 - 11:29
So nice that a landlord actively advise to force young children onto the street. No wonder we have an appalling reputation.

David Houghton

15:59 PM, 11th March 2023, About A year ago

Reply to the comment left by MFL at 08/03/2023 - 13:29
Exactly nothing to lose by serving s21. If they stop playing rent serve S8 ground 10 and 11. Tell them you will use that instead (don't actually use it though) and tell them if you do they won't get social housing, just a bed sit

Luke P

17:58 PM, 11th March 2023, About A year ago

Reply to the comment left by Gillian Schifreen at 11/03/2023 - 13:34
What have the children got to do with the landlord? They are entirely the parent’s responsibility and any action will be as a result of their decision-making.

Tell me, which middle-class area of the south do you rent semis in?

Nick Van Hoogstraten

9:07 AM, 17th March 2023, About A year ago

Reply to the comment left by Luke P at 11/03/2023 - 17:58
I’m evicting now. The woman lied about being married. Has 4 kids. Grows mould in the house. Tried to sue for compensation. She’s non stop problems. Only paying the LHA too.

Her job was to pay the rent on time and not cause unnecessary problems. She always paid late and now has stopped altogether. It’s all her fault she’s going.

The kids are the parents’ problem. It’s their responsibility to provide a home. Owned or rented.

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