Tenant With 2 Months Arrears – “Do what you like”!

by Readers Question

10 months ago

Tenant With 2 Months Arrears – “Do what you like”!

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Tenant With 2 Months Arrears – “Do what you like”!

Hi guys, I am in a situation where tenant has defaulted 2 months in a row as such she is in arrears for 2 months accordingly. She has been my tenant since mid August and she did not pay last month’s rent as she suggested that she would pay it in January both months combined. this way out

The rent was due on Monday, she stated that, she would pay at 9am when bank opens. I contacted her at 12pm to state that the rent has not come in. She responded “I would pay ASAP”. I asked when what time? She responded, when I am ready”. I said, you still need to tell me when she repeated when I am ready”

Finally she stated, I am fed up with you and cannot deal with you just serve us notice via email”. I stated that, you would still need to clear arrears to which she responded she has not got any arrears. I responded she does to which she responded “Do what you like”.

I have today served her Section 8 and 21 Notice together. Section 8 does not expire until 4 Feb 2017 and Section 21 does not expire until Mid April 2017. I am exercising my 6 months break clause although tenancy is set up for a year. I need to check with your guys if wording of break clause is OK.

The wording of break clause is:

Early Termination

If it is agreed between the Parties that either may terminate this Agreement as follows:

– By the Landlord giving to the Tenant at least two months written notice, such notice to expire on the last day of the rental period;

– By the Tenant giving to the Landlord at least one month written notice, such notice to expire on the last day of the rental period.

Under such clause, notice cannot take effect earlier than the last day of six month of the tenancy.

My questions are, what route is better Section 8 or 21 in my circumstances? Can she claim that she has paid rent to me in Cash and deny any arrears? in which case Section 21 may be better route however wait is longer! I am aware that, I can not run both Section 8 and Section 21 Concurrently. What other options I have to evict her?

Is my early break clause within tenancy appropriately worded?

Any advice will be greatly appreciated.

Kind regards
Simon

Comments

Simon Hall

10 months ago

Reply to the comment left by "Dr Rosalind Beck" at "20/01/2017 - 09:38":

Ros thank you for your kind words. Whilst it won't break my bank but it is putting a huge strain on my finances particularly when I bought this fairly recently and Mortgage is fairly large. I have had a bad experience with tenant last summer who had been my tenant for more than six years and who turned into real nasty piece of work when I served him section 21 Notice, he claimed that, I had not fully complied with Tenant Deposit Scheme the case ended up in court fully blown litigation as he managed to get Legal Aid and I ended up with huge legal costs, I won the case. The tenant still did not have any arrears but I never recovered any of legal costs.

Since August last year, I started to rent properties without deposit however the upshot is that those who do not pay deposits probably are not financially secure and now I am having problems with both of the properties I rented out without deposit. You just can not Win! I have to go through protracted legal process just to get them out whilst they are laughing at you. It's about time they changed legislation in Landlords favour or I sell up all properties.

Gary Nock

10 months ago

Simon being a landlord is a steep learning curve and like Ros I "share your pain" on this and it makes you feel like jacking it all in at times. I learned long ago as a landlord that its a war of attrition at times. I was told something years ago from a well seasoned investor with 150 properties. He said when I was telling him about one of my two tales of woe (I have suffered in 14 years of being a landlord) "Son, if it was that easy everbody would do it" - and he was and still is right. Stick with it, put things in place to mitigate risk and it will all come right honest.

Simon Hall

10 months ago

Reply to the comment left by "Gary Nock" at "20/01/2017 - 13:28":

Gary, thanks for lifting up my spirits! That's why I Love this site. Big thumbs up for Mark Alexander for setting up this site.

Simon Hall

10 months ago

Reply to the comment left by "Gary Nock" at "20/01/2017 - 13:28":

Gary, I can see from your profile that you take tenants deposits. How do you protect it and how do you ensure it is fully compliant? As my one of my tenant claimed that as mentioned earlier that one page of documentation was missing and it ended up in huge legal battle and I had to instruct one of the most renowned and expensive chambers of barrister to prove my case.

I am far too hesitant to take deposit.

Simon Hall

10 months ago

Reply to the comment left by "Romain Garcin" at "20/01/2017 - 11:46":

Thanks Romain! I nearly missed your response. I am slightly relieved now. I still may take Section 8 Notice Route but if she reduces her arrears below 2 months, can I then rely upon Section 21 which was served simultaneously? however I am under the impression that, you can not rely on both only 1 Notice.

If I relied upon Section 8 and then can I come back to have a bite of Section 21 in case she reduced her arrears?

Romain Garcin

10 months ago

Reply to the comment left by "Simon Hall" at "20/01/2017 - 13:39":

Yes you can rely on either or both.

Simon Hall

10 months ago

Reply to the comment left by "Romain Garcin" at "20/01/2017 - 13:53":

Thanks Romain! I just realised having read your profile that you are based in Reading. Coincidentally half of my portfolio is in Reading as well as property in question!

Perhaps we could meet up for drink in coming days which is mutually convenient for both?

Gary Nock

10 months ago

Reply to the comment left by "Simon Hall" at "20/01/2017 - 13:36":

Hi Simon I use the DPS and their 3 / 4 page template
( depending on printer) which you just fill in. Then if using the Custodial Scheme I print off all six pages of the Terms and Conditons and attach it to the template. I also print off "Guide For Tenants" on the DPS site and make that a separate
document. Then together with the tenancy agreement, How To Rent, Gas Cert, EPC, Elec Cert, Legionella Cert and full digital inventory I get the tenant to sign and initial each page. Last tenancy pack was 120 pages but when that copy drops in the tenants postbox and is served in possession cases there is rarely if any query.

Simon Hall

10 months ago

Reply to the comment left by "Gary Nock" at "20/01/2017 - 14:20":

Thank you Gary. I have been using Mydeposits albeit stopped taking deposits since summer last year. The DPS document which you are referring to:
https://www.depositprotection.com/documents/prescribed-information-template-insured.pdf

Is it this one?

Last year the issue we had was "The Circumstances in which landlord can withhold deposit was not given to tenant with deposit protection documentation and Mydeposits does not cover with their documentation as they put the monkey on your back.

Fortunately it was comprehensively covered in Tenancy agreement and Judge sided with us and given us possession of property whilst dismissing tenants case in its entirety.

I should add, if we lost the case, then we would have had paid £28000 legal costs for other side as it was funded by legal aid and compensation for non compliance six times deposit amount.

As they claimed 3 x whilst in fixed term and then again 3 X'S whilst in periodic.

So I would have had to cough up nearly £40k if i lost.

Gary Nock

10 months ago

Hi Simon. I use the Custodial Scheme. I used to use Mydeposits and if the paperwork if filled in correctly should be no problem. In both DPS, MyDeposits and all other deposit protection schemes there has to be a reference in the prescribed information as to in what circumstances the deposit can be retained. This is probably what they were trying on. The DPS is very explicit that you have to enter the clause reference in the pres info. My Deposits is not as specific.

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