Tenants who give notice but stay – Double rent?

by Readers Question

10:26 AM, 12th October 2020
About A week ago

Tenants who give notice but stay – Double rent?

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Tenants who give notice but stay – Double rent?

A lawyer recently told me that he thought there was a law whereby, if a tenant gives notice, but then does not move out at the end of their notice period, they can be charged double rent.

Has anyone heard of this please or know what my position is under the Covid-19 emergency rules?

My tenants gave notice 2 months ago, but now what 6 months notice from me which seems odd since they already terminated the contract!

Many Thanks

Jamie


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Comments

Neil Patterson

10:30 AM, 12th October 2020
About A week ago

Hi Jamie,

I am not sure where the lawyer would have got the double rent idea from?

However, it does sound like your tenants are looking to take advantage of the new emergency government changes to section 21 requiring 6 months notice.

Please see >> https://www.property118.com/updated-covid-19-government-guidance-for-landlords-and-tenants/

Tessa Shepperson

11:32 AM, 12th October 2020
About A week ago

I think you are referring to the 1737 Distress for Rent Act which I wrote about here: https://www.landlordlawblog.co.uk/2009/12/01/ancient-law-may-help-landlords/

Suzy149

12:14 PM, 12th October 2020
About A week ago

I read the following somewhere:
If tenant gives notice and does not leave they have to pay double the rent:
Section 18 of the Distress for Rent Act 1735 Section is ust about the only part of the act which has not been repealed. Beware take a copy of the act to court if this becomes necessary as most Judges are unaware of the act..

Dr Rosalind Beck

12:25 PM, 12th October 2020
About A week ago

I successfully used this Act several years ago and was awarded several months' double rent. The judge had to be told about the Act as he wasn't aware of it. He accepted an email from the tenants saying they would leave 'at the end of the month' as proof. I then got all the money back via an attachment of earnings.

Clint

12:49 PM, 12th October 2020
About A week ago

I am well aware of this law and it has happened to me where a new prospective tenant was due to move in a day after the current tenant was due to move out. It caused me problems explaining the situation to the tenant who was supposed to move in.

The problem was, that I could not find the procedure anywhere on how to evict such a person as, they are no longer a tenant but a trespasser. This old tenant is still in the property and I am sure that she would not be able to pay the daily rent which should be double as stated in this post so in a way, it is just continuing like a normal tenancy.

Neil Patterson

13:45 PM, 12th October 2020
About A week ago

Reply to the comment left by Dr Rosalind Beck at 12/10/2020 - 12:25
Every day is a Skool day Ros 🙂

DALE ROBERTS

15:17 PM, 12th October 2020
About A week ago

Reply to the comment left by Dr Rosalind Beck at 12/10/2020 - 12:25
I tried to use it on a serial rogue tenant who left me over GBP20 000 in rental arrears - excluding the cost of the trashed unit. The Bromley County Court judge was totally resistant to it even with the relevant legislation quoted. My legal representative warned me against using it feeling it would insinuate to the judge that I was indeed a "greedy" landlord as opposed to an aggrieved one. Needless to say I have not received a cent towards the CCJ anyway. I would be interested to learn if it has been recently successfully used by a landlord.

Clint

18:12 PM, 12th October 2020
About A week ago

Reply to the comment left by DALE ROBERTS at 12/10/2020 - 15:17
A judge is there to implement the law so, I cannot understand why the judge did not allow it.

DALE ROBERTS

18:46 PM, 12th October 2020
About A week ago

Reply to the comment left by Clint at 12/10/2020 - 18:12I agree.
BUT I also had to fight long and hard to have the CCJ registered. The Court was equally lax about that.

Jamie Finch

9:14 AM, 13th October 2020
About A week ago

Thank you for all your comments - all very helpful. I have since found some info online which suggests that in order to claim the extra amounts possible (not limited to rent), I would have to stop taking the rent they are currently still paying. Does anyone have anything to say on that count please?

Thank you

Jamie

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