Tenant being evicted to enable “massive repairs”?

by Readers Question

9:55 AM, 11th September 2020
About 3 weeks ago

Tenant being evicted to enable “massive repairs”?

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Tenant being evicted to enable “massive repairs”?

A tenant (local to us but not one of ours) has been advised that she has to vacate to enable “massive repairs”.

I do not currently have details of what these massive repairs entail, but the suspicion is that they are actually improvements being labelled as repairs by the landlord as a way of attempting to circumvent the current virus-related restrictions on eviction.

Obviously, if the works concerned are of a safety-related nature then there may be no option but if not what are the rules here?

Can a landlord require a tenant to vacate for renovation work, or are they duty-bound to hold fire until the current emergency is over and the regulations are relaxed again?

The tenant concerned is an NHS key worker single mum with two kids.

Badger


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Comments

Neil Patterson

10:25 AM, 11th September 2020
About 3 weeks ago

From my understanding of the new rules it could only be for an immediate Health and Safety issue.

John Mac

11:03 AM, 11th September 2020
About 3 weeks ago

Need clarification on "asked to vacate" ?
Are they being asked to move out Temporarily whilst essential H&S repairs are made? In which case any Temp accommodation would be at the LL's expense.

If they are being asked to "vacate" permanently then its 6M notice. Maybe LL is trying it on !!

david porter

11:06 AM, 11th September 2020
About 3 weeks ago

We have a property which we suspect needs a new roof.
We have had leaks previously and work was done.
However we seem to have a new issue ( or perhaps water ingress manifesting itself in another location)
I do not know how this can be accomplished without the tenant vacating?

John Mac

11:09 AM, 11th September 2020
About 3 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by david porter at 11/09/2020 - 11:06
see answer above, put T in Temp accomodation whilst repair is done.

Paul Shears

11:14 AM, 11th September 2020
About 3 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by david porter at 11/09/2020 - 11:06
Good & relevant thought.

JamesB

11:15 AM, 11th September 2020
About 3 weeks ago

Maybe that’s the landlords reason they just have to sell up or something.. don’t see the problem .. seems like it’s gets forgotten these days who owns the house and landlords are challenged why they want their own property back now

Badger

11:35 AM, 11th September 2020
About 3 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by JamesB at 11/09/2020 - 11:15
The tenant has a letter advising that major repairs are required but she is concerned that this may not the true reason for why she is being told that she has to leave.

Nobody would dispute that, to take the example mentioned in the thread above, the need for a new roof or other major repairs would require tenants (plural - it is an HMO from what I can gather) to relocate.

But the concern is that what the landlord actually wants to do is to change and / or improve the building by adding a storey to it as this has been done quite a lot with other HMOs in the immediate vicinity. Or, possibly, convert the current HMO and studio flat arrangement within the building into self-contained flats.

As a landlord myself I have great sympathy with the desire of anybody to change (or sell if indeed that be the true motivation) their property but it has to be done in accordance with the law - whatever one may think of it.

So, the crux of the issue then is - does improvement work and / or sale of the property constitute a valid reason to evict under the current regulations?

John Mac

11:41 AM, 11th September 2020
About 3 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by Badger at 11/09/2020 - 11:35
Yes its a Valid reason BUT still has to be done Legally - which at the moment would be a Valid Eviction Notice giving 6M for the Tenant to find somewhere new.

In effect if the Tenant wanted to be stubborn there is no way the LL would get them out until 2022 !!

The Secret Landlord

18:00 PM, 11th September 2020
About 3 weeks ago

It's tricky because some 'big' repairs can still be undertaken with a tenant in situ (I've had to rewire and put in a DPC while tenants in situ) *IF* they are amenable and understand the issues that will happen while works are undertaken.

In an ideal world when you're undertaking large repairs you would have an empty property, but sometimes situations dictate that's not possible.

I think it needs to be treated on a case-by-case basis with regards the actual repairs, the property and the tenant. Some people say they are fine with works and then when it starts it's a different story - hence why I say cases like these are individual


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