Prospective tenant has CCJ – should I take them?

Prospective tenant has CCJ – should I take them?

9:47 AM, 28th May 2015, About 8 years ago 25

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I have just evicted one tenant so need to ensure I find the right tenant next. I’ve just referenced a new family and the tenant has a CCJ for car hire £1300.

However I have spoken with previous 2 landlords (one housing association the other a letting agent) . The rent was up to date and the house was left immaculately, they recommend them as tenants So my dilemma is should I let to them?


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Gary Nock

16:55 PM, 28th May 2015, About 8 years ago

You will be very unlikely to get RGI in these circumstances without a guarantor. And make sure its a properly set out Deed of Guarantee drawn up by someone like Tessa who sometimes posts on here. A guarantor signing as such on the tenancy agreement is not worth the paper its written on.

And I agree with Romain and Anthony...HB + CCJ = Risk. Don't get sucked in by the LA and their money.

Joan Deal

18:00 PM, 28th May 2015, About 8 years ago

Are you sure the landlord references are genuine? I have a fraudster in my house who tricked his way in by forging landlord and employer references sufficient to fool the referencing firm used by my letting agent although not me when I eventually managed to see them. I found the genuine agent letting the previous property simply by doing a Zoopla search on the previous address. On phoning him I discovered the family had been evicted for non payment of rent to the tune of £12k. He now owes me nearly £5k and I'm in the process of eviction. Watch out for things like gmail addresses and mobile rather than landline numbers. If you're not given the name of a reputable letting agent as a referee a google search might throw up information such as xxxxxagency not found as in my case. This bloke did not have any ccjs but I discovered he is also director of a limited co and that did have a recent one. This completely by passed the referencing agency. Personally I wouldn't risk it. People can think they're being very clever by hiding things and.presenting plausible stories when questioned and you may not find out the truth until it's too late.

Mark Trenfield

19:06 PM, 28th May 2015, About 8 years ago

Hi Sarah
The CCJ is for a car hire debt .... not rent arrears to a previous landlord. The Council are offering you an incentive to take the tenant. I assume you have met them and you like them and they "scrub up well"?

You could go and personally visit them (where they are living now) to see for yourself whether they are looking after their existing property. You could also ask why they are looking to move ... and make sure this checks out with the current landlord / letting agent.

Also .... with the Council "on side" ... I don't really see the risk. They are offering you an incentive to take the tenant so, I would presume, they will also help you get rid of the tenant (by moving them somewhere else) if things don't go to plan. Ask the council whether they will help you or not if things turn sour?

I take loads of tenants on HB and many with CCJs (but never with CCJs for non payment of rent) ... and have never had a problem. Getting rent guarantee insurance for a HB tenant with a CCJ is probably going to be impossible.

I think you should trust your "gut instinct" ......

Good Luck


Mark Alexander - Founder of Property118

8:09 AM, 29th May 2015, About 8 years ago

If you feel you need to take a commercial view, at least insist on seeing 6 months bank and credit card statements and meeting them in their current home.

Jamie M

11:23 AM, 29th May 2015, About 8 years ago

Don't touch them with a barge pole (CCJ + Benefits = trouble)

if they ever get into arrears they will be coached by the Local Authority to stay put while you evict them and this often takes about 5- 6 months in some cases and there is nothing you can do about it.

Run a mile


10:25 AM, 30th May 2015, About 8 years ago

Interview the tenant yourself. I had a couple once coming out of bankruptcy, down to their previous partners. They were desperate to re-establish themselves and were just about perfect tenants.

Neil Robb

22:21 PM, 30th May 2015, About 8 years ago

May be I am just stupid. How do you feel about the people. If you don't give someone a chance how will the ever get back on track.

You can do all the checks you want if it is going to go wrong it will. Nearly all the time it works out.

Even the so call brilliant landlords who do every thing right make mistakes.

Give them a chance. Funny some of my tenants who I had doubts about are my best tenants.

Graham Durkin

8:00 AM, 31st May 2015, About 8 years ago

Sarah, you have mentioned some important points ,Council incentive WHY !!!!!, previously in a HOUSING ASSOCIATION PROPERTY, normally these people can transfer from region to region,is it not strange that the Council will now pay a higher rent to a private landlord than to a H/A where they were already in adequate housing. Are they paying back the C.C.J. amount , ask the prospective tenant for proof. of repayment. Ask the Council for extra BOND /DEPOSIT as they have already offered you MONEY. Just try to cover all bases, but as already stated you will get people that pass all the stress tests even via the agent and it still goes wrong . Ask the council direct face to face with the prospective tenants permission by letter ,any SKELETONS in the cupboard please, if any of them refuse then walk away.But they just might be good but as we know only time will tell.

Sarah Pajger

9:11 AM, 2nd June 2015, About 8 years ago

What if I just put the wife on the tenancy and not the husband with the ccj. I could then get rgi since she is sqeaky clean. I'm not sure what the implications Are of having wife and not husband on tenancy agreement. I'd like to take them especially as I turned up unannounced to their current immaculate rented property. And previous 2 landlords spoke highly of them.( one a housing association and one a letting agent I know well). The £1000 incentive for me is to cover some of the costs of previous tenant which I pushed for. Commercially this is a good deal and out of the 7 council tenants I've had, only one was bad, but she was great for first 4yrs of tenancy and I had 42k worth of rent, mainly housing benefit out of her

Andrew Holmes

10:25 AM, 2nd June 2015, About 8 years ago

Hello Sarah,

If you leave the husband off the tenancy agreement you will have no course for a CCJ and legal recourse against him if things go wrong.

One of the great bargain powers bailiffs have against a debtor is their vehicle, if that vehicle is in the husbands name and he is not on the tenancy agreement it can not be touched, this means you will be left trying to get bailiffs into the property to try and recover any outstanding funds. You may want to look at what if their is damage to the property also and the wife states the husband did it, you would have a job recovering damage compensation and also your house insurance may not want to cover you.

I previously mentioned a full experian credit report against both of them, is it something you have looked into ? It will give you a lot better insight into their previous activities.

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