Government forcing landlords to house non-paying tenants for lengthy periods11:18 AM, 15th September 2020
About 6 days ago 39
I have 2 tenants in my property who each rent a room each and share a communal space. Since living together, they have argued non-stop over really petty things and were contacting me daily to complain about each other.
Finally, it escalated in January and in February one of them went to stay with her Mum and hasn’t been back to the property since.
I had offered to release both of them early from the contract if they were so unhappy, but both declined and said they didn’t see why they should have to move out when they were happy there and blaming the other person for being anti-social and impossible to deal with.
Just before lockdown I pre-warned both of them that I would be taking back possession of the property once the minimum 6 months were up. One of the girls replied and said that she had found somewhere else to stay and was actually moving her stuff out the following week as she was taking me up on my offer to leave early. No notice nothing! At this point I just wanted one of them to leave because it had got seriously stressful waking up to early morning messages from them both.
That was just before we went in to lockdown in March. Obviously as soon as that happened she was unable to come and remove her belongings. She then lost her job and was really worried about her Mums health as she already has a lung disease so she was staying with her and being very strict on the self-isolation which I totally understood.
I volunteered a reduction in rent for April to help her out and I couldn’t get new tenants in at that point anyway. I thought I was doing her a favour and that as soon as she could she would remove her belongings.
I haven’t received any rent since 4th March and she has now applied for housing benefit.
We discussed everything over email and I said that as the restrictions were lifting, and house moves could go ahead now I really need her to get her stuff and vacate the rooms. She agreed and was due to move her stuff out next weekend 6th June. I then found new tenants who gave notice on their current property and were going to move in later in June.
She has now emailed me and said that she doesn’t want to find another shared property because she doesn’t want to mix with other people while her mum is sick. She wants to apply to the council to house her in her own flat as she is unemployed and on benefits now but that they will not help her if she leaves my property voluntarily. So she wants me to start eviction process.
1. she hasn’t lived in my property since end of January she has just left her belonging there so even by me evicting her is not making her homeless
2. Granted her mum has a small flat but she can stay there she is not on the street
3. Where do I stand with these emails agreeing to move out already and then suddenly changing her mind because she wants a council property?
I know I’ve made this situation worse by being understanding and agreeing terms outside of the contract. The contract states that after the 6 months minimum (4th May) she has to give me 6 weeks’ notice to leave which she has never done.
If I want her to leave I need to issue section 21 with 3 month’s notice but I’m wondering if she will then ignore this in order for me to go to court so she is made legally homeless for the benefit of her council house application
This is the first and last time I rent a property, any advice would be gratefully received.
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