Use a solicitor to help evict a tenant or do it yourself?

by Readers Question

9:03 AM, 24th March 2015
About 6 years ago

Use a solicitor to help evict a tenant or do it yourself?

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Use a solicitor to help evict a tenant or do it yourself?

I have a property which is being managed by a letting agent and the tenant who is a single parent in full time work is now over 3 months in arrears. The tenant has had lots of letters sent to her and been into the letting agent to arrange a payment plan to pay off the arrears a couple of months ago but only made a few weekly payments then stopped paying again. I have asked the letting agent to serve a section 8 notice mainly due to the fact she will not answer any telephone calls or reply to any messages sent to her. Use a solicitor to help evict a tenant or do it yourself

The section 8 gave her two weeks notice which expired last Friday. I spoke to my letting agent today who has advised me to use a solicitor to help with the eviction process. I spoke to a solicitor who said he can submit paperwork to the court for £180 and go to court for another £350 and I will need to pay £250 court costs.

From the advice he gave me I am also serving a section 21 notice as well as extra security.

I am not sure if I should try to do the process myself online as it looks quite simple, any advice would be appreciated.

Thanks

Andy



Comments

Antony Richards

20:15 PM, 28th March 2015
About 6 years ago

Why is the managing agent not doing this?

Rob Crawford

20:27 PM, 28th March 2015
About 6 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Antony Richards" at "28/03/2015 - 20:15":

Hi Antony, the only people who can sign court proceedings are the landlord (the claimant) or the Landlords solicitor. Also read the following: http://www.landlordlawblog.co.uk/2012/08/23/letting-agents-how-to-help-a-landlord-evict-bad-tenants-without-putting-your-firm-at-risk/

Gary Nock

20:27 PM, 28th March 2015
About 6 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Antony Richards" at "28/03/2015 - 20:15":

Antony it all depends if the agent has took out rent insurance guarantee. If they just manage it without rent insurance in place, then it is up to the landlord to source his own legals and do the necessary. The agent should serve the Section 8 or Section 21 for you (properly hopefully) but after that you are on your own.

If however you have rent insurance on a fully managed package then the agent should earn his corn and do all the liaison with the insurers etc.

The only thing you should do on a section 8 is turn up with the insurers legal rep and let them do the talking.

For what Letting Supermarket charge for their managed packages and Rent Insurance it really isn't worth doing it yourself.

Antony Richards

9:20 AM, 29th March 2015
About 6 years ago

Any agency worth their salt should be able to do this without resorting to outsourcing because of lack of knowledge and ability

Rob Crawford

12:14 PM, 29th March 2015
About 6 years ago

Anthony, I totally disagree. Some larger agents may well employ their own solicitor for such occasions, however, there will be a big disclaimer in their terms of business agreed with the landlord that will come into effect should things go wrong. A solicitor working for an agent will not be able to represent you if things go wrong and litigation is perused by the landlord against the agent. Most agents will not have their own solicitor and they will not have the necessary indemnity insurance to cover such legal proceedings. If an agent is instructed to act on a landlord's behalf they will pass the case on to a solicitor or eviction specialist to act on the landlord's behalf. Any work required of the Agent will be in addition to that provided under a fully managed service and so the Agent will add their costs to that of the chosen solicitor or eviction company. I think Tessa's advice via the link in my previous comment is pretty solid and good advise to Agents and Landlords!

Antony Richards

19:57 PM, 29th March 2015
About 6 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Rob Crawford" at "29/03/2015 - 12:14":

Rob, likewise I totally disagree. It's Antony by the way.
Last year we had a serial rogue tenant doing the rounds. Unfortunately they didn't pass the message on and were the fifth ones that got caught. The previous landlord using a countrywide agent spent over £4000 with a solicitor who took 8 months to get possession. I got possession on Xmas eve, just 9 weeks after the commencement of the tenancy. It did not cost our landlord a penny. The previous landlord is now one of our satisfied clients. We all make mistakes. What defines us is how we correct them. No online or national agency can provide such a service.
I repeat, if is the agency's job to rectify the situation not outsource at considerable expense to the client.

Gary Nock

20:23 PM, 29th March 2015
About 6 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Antony Richards" at "29/03/2015 - 19:57":

Antony if I am reading this right, and please correct me if I am wrong you provide your landlords with a managed service that in the absence of rent insurance evicts tenants as part of that managed service?

So you serve notices, fill in Court Forms, pay Court Fees, and attend Court all for your standard management fee?

Antony Richards

7:59 AM, 30th March 2015
About 6 years ago

In essence yes

Gary Nock

22:10 PM, 30th March 2015
About 6 years ago

Mmm. You either have a managed portfolio that brings in sufficient income so that you play the percentages on doing this so it does not affect your business model. Or you are so confident in your tenant placement and referencing that you have no or few defaultees. Personally as part of my managed service I insure all my landlords with rent insurance guarantee for £75 per year per property. In my model £75 per property is better than risking £1000 for legals. Do you also pay your landlords rent for 3 months while you evict tenants?

Jay James

10:38 AM, 4th May 2015
About 5 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Antony Richards" at "30/03/2015 - 07:59":

I note your lack of response to Gary Nock of 30-03-15, 22.10. One wonders if the whole picture is being stated and what possible reason there could be for things not adding up.

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