Tenants in breach and need to vacate for full rewire?

by Readers Question

9:26 AM, 23rd February 2021
About 4 days ago

Tenants in breach and need to vacate for full rewire?

Make Text Bigger
Tenants in breach and need to vacate for full rewire?

I wonder if somebody could give me some advice? I have a property which is let to an Eastern European couple. My electrician has been round to do his electrical report. He has advised me that the property requires a full rewire but as “there appear to be up to 10 people living in the property” and in view of hygiene issues he can’t do it unless the house is vacated.

Whilst the tenant is not in arrears they are in breach of the AST re people living there. I would prefer to sell the house now if possible.

1. Can I ask them to move out to get the work done and then do I need to let them back in?

2. Can I give them a shorter notice as by having more people living there this would constitute anti-social behaviour and if so do I just let the electrical work wait till I get possession if the electrician doesn’t agree to do the work till they have left?

3. Should I suggest they leave as they are in breach of the AST and I need to get the work done, so they would have to move out for a period in any event and I agree to pay the deposit back which they will not be entitled to?

– Any suggestions on how to play this?

Many Thanks

Simon

Comments

RL

10:04 AM, 23rd February 2021
About 4 days ago

1. Make sure you are fully compliant with everything first. Gas certs/deposit protected etc. If this happens to go down the legal route make sure you are covered as a judge can throw anything out on a whim if they get a sniff that you have done every single thing you should have.
2. If they are in total breach of AST then you have grounds to issue a S8. If you have insurance cover that has legal advice - call and ask for guidance.
3,. It may be wise to issue them with a formal warning first in advance of issuing a S8 to given them a heads up and time to get the uninvited people out. You can state you will be taking formal action and involving the Police also if they don't act.
Issuing a S8 will show your claws from the start (don't forget you can always retract this) - this may be enough for those not listed on the TA to leave (they may not all be legal themselves??).

Graham Bowcock

16:28 PM, 23rd February 2021
About 4 days ago

Qu 1 - you can ask them to move out, but be prepared to do it properly. You may have to fund their alternative accommodation and moving costs, etc.. It's not the tenants' fault that works needs doing and, frankly it begs the question of the conditon of the electrics when they moved in if such substantial works are now needed. Yes you do need to met them back in. Permanent eviction would be unlawful and you need to read carefully.

Qu 2 - it sounds like they are breach of their AST, and may have created a HMO whihc could be a further problem for you. YOU should perhaps take good legal advice on this point.

Qu 3 - I think you just need to speak with the tenants and agree how the works can be done. Repaying the deposit is only part of the stro; you have works to do and need to bear the costs of dealing with the situation.

David

18:17 PM, 23rd February 2021
About 4 days ago

You have an unlawful HMO on your hands and should speak to a housing solicitor asap.

Graham Bowcock

8:30 AM, 24th February 2021
About 3 days ago

Reply to the comment left by Graham Bowcock at 23/02/2021 - 16:28
Somebody kindly pointed out some typoes (which I hate, so am very grateful). here is the (hopefully) correct version:

Qu 1 - You can ask them to move out, but be prepared to do it properly. You may have to fund their alternative accommodation and moving costs, etc.. It's not the tenants' fault that works needs doing and, frankly it begs the question of the conditon of the electrics when they moved in if such substantial works are now needed. Yes you do need to let them back in. Permanent eviction would be unlawful and you need to read carefully.

Qu 2 - it sounds like they are breach of their AST, and may have created a HMO which could be a further problem for you. You should perhaps take good legal advice on this point.

Qu 3 - I think you just need to speak with the tenants and agree how the works can be done. Repaying the deposit is only part of the issue; you have works to do and need to bear the costs of dealing with the situation.


Leave Comments

Please Log-In OR Become a member to reply to comments or subscribe to new comment notifications.

Forgotten your password?

BECOME A MEMBER

Deposit found not deposited in 2010?

The Landlords Union

Become a Member, it's FREE

Our mission is to facilitate the sharing of best practice amongst UK landlords, tenants and letting agents

Learn More