Tenancy achieved by deception question

by Property 118

7 months ago

Tenancy achieved by deception question

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Tenancy achieved by deception question

I am curious about what happens if a tenant knowingly lies to get the tenancy, such as claiming they have a job when they don’t and or agrees to pay a rent they could never realistically expect to afford.

Would that then be grounds for eviction?

If so on the later would that what councils constitute ‘deliberately’ homeless?

Many thanks

Tobias

Comments

Ian Narbeth

6 months ago

Tobias
What happens is the landlord loses a lot of money and endures months of aggravation unless the tenant can be persuaded to go quickly by the threat of a County Court Judgment. Depending on the tenant you may be faced with false allegations of harassment, that the property is sub-standard and the eviction is a revenge eviction and you may find the tenant damages the furniture and fabric of the property.

Taking on obligations a tenant cannot meet is not a crime. Claiming they have a job when they do not may possibly involve an offence under the Fraud Act but the police will have between zero and 0% interest in the matter. Private prosecution? Maybe. It will cost you time and money but you won't get a penny in damages. You as landlord should have carried out a credit check, checked with the employer and taken up references.
Welcome to the world of landlording.

terry sullivan

6 months ago

try the police? probably will not help but it is deception

Mike W

6 months ago

Tobias,
So you rented out a property worth £? to someone you had never met before based on what they said to you. And you believed them without checking whether their statements were true. That is very generous and trusting of you.
Whether or not they have a job may not be relevant if they have other sources of finance, and of course a job can be a zero hours contract or a ceo of a large company - both are insecure. But I can understand your reservations: you now consider them untrustworthy, and if something goes wrong how can you trust their version of events?
I think your powers of removal are entirely based upon the tenant performance: namely whether or not they meet their obligations, for example, pay the rent. To try and remove someone from a contract, just because you think they are untrustworthy, would not get very far in court.

Charles Anderson

6 months ago

If you can evidence the deception, then ground 17 in Schedule 2 of the Housing Act 1988 is a mandatory ground .. but I would stress, be able to prove it !..

Don Holmes

6 months ago

The direct advice you were looking for is from Charles above. Ground 17 – This ground was introduced by the Housing Act 1996 and covers cases where the tenancy has been created as a result of a false statement knowingly having been made by the tenant or someone acting on his behalf. It is worth noting here the importance of a Tenancy Application which seeks factual information from the tenant.
If you have an application form from the applicant on which they have made a false statement then the Judge has no discretion.
https://www.landlordzone.co.uk/information/grounds-for-possession

Ian Narbeth

6 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Don Holmes at 09/10/2017 - 14:29
Hi Don, Ground 17 is discretionary. If the landlord has a clear written statement from the tenant that the tenant was in employment and that is demonstrably false then the judge ought to exercise discretion in favour of the landlord, especially if there are also arrears of rent. That said, some judges seem to bend over backwards to help tenants so it is not guaranteed that possession will be ordered.

However, if the evidence is not in writing the tenant might deny the allegation and so Ground 8 (arrears of rent) would be a better ground to use as it is mandatory.

Hey everyone,
This does not effect me, what spurred my curiousity was reading that housing benefit/UC wont be allowed for under 21's apart from in certain cases. So I was just thinking what if say a would be tenant under 21 said they meet the criteria but knowingly/unknowingly did not in fact and so LL would obviously not get the rent. So no need to worry everyone.

Chris Daniel

6 months ago

Reply to the comment left by terry sullivan at 09/10/2017 - 12:03
Let me clarify, Ian's estimation of the Police interest in tenant lies to obtain a tenancy is probably over estimated ! the nearest you'd get the the Police after a 20 minute wait on Telephoning 101, is
" Its a civil matter "
Of course in the strict sense of the law / justice, that Police response is wrong, it is a clear Pecuniary Advantage under Section 16 of the Theft Act, ~ obtains goods or services by deception / false representation. ( or Fraud to the lay person )
There is so much Fraud and other crime, some not so minor, that the dwindling Police numbers just don't have the resources to deal with. Not making excuses, just telling it as it is.


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