8:28 AM, 24th April 2018, About 4 years ago
Since the rollout of the Governments flagship benefit Universal Credit many landlords are finding themselves with tenants that are unable to pay their rent and are therefore incurring rent arrears.
Universal Credit has been criticized by landlords and tenants alike mostly for maladministration, department delays in setting up claims and inconsistent and lengthy processes in setting up a Managed Payment Request (APA/Direct Payment to Landlord)
So what do you do if your tenants in arrears and you wish to regain your property?
If you tenant is in rent arrears you can serve a s8 notice (Section 8 of the Housing Acts 1988 & 1996) using grounds 8, 10 and 11.
Ground 8 –Arrears must exceed 8 weeks if the rent is paid weekly or fortnightly, 2 months if paid monthly, one full quarter if paid quarterly or 3 months if paid yearly. The maximum arrears in each case must exist both at the notice of proceedings and at the hearing itself. The ground must be clearly stated so that the tenant knows what he is responding to.
Ground 10 – This ground covers arrears of rent being in arrears less than the times specified in mandatory ground 8. This ground also, with the consent of the court, allows rent recover by distress.
Ground 11 – This ground covers persistent delays in rent payment. However, being a discretionary ground the court will take into account factors outside the tenant’s control, for example, delays in housing benefit payments
With a Section 8 Notice you must give at least 2 weeks written notices using the correct form Notice seeking possession of a property let on an assured tenancy or an assured agricultural occupancy.
This form can be found on Gov.uk website.
If your tenant does not vacate the property on the notice expiry date your next step would be to apply to the Courts for a ‘possession order’.
If you have a tenant that is currently in rent arrears and is on Universal Credit please contact us to see how we may be able to assist you in applying for third party deductions.
We also are currently offering a discount on our eviction packages and Universal Credit/Housing Benefit Packages please contact us to see how we may be able to assist you.
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