Council defending rogue tenant

I let a house out, through a council, who placed a tenant in the house, who I met before signing the tenancy agreement. The council assured me they thoroughly checked the tenant for suitability and affordability. An AST is in place.

The tenant defaulted on the second payment of rent and has been in arrears ever since. I have now got his Universal Credit paid to my account, leaving him to make up the shortfall to cover the full rent, but he has yet to set up a regular payment method.

The council are refusing to fully address my concerns and have offered me the amount of money owed, but not future shortfalls, but on the strict condition I keep the tenant on after the AST date ends. The council now admit the tenant has affordability issues and always has done.

I just want shot of this guy after I get loads of promises and excuses from him, which I cannot believe and the council have confirmed they plan to keep him in situ.

I feel I am in for a long fight, even serving section 8 or 21, or both.

I cannot see how agreeing to pay his arrears can be linked to the condition of you extending his lease once term expires. This is outrageous of them to suggest this.

Have you evidence that you were given inaccurate info from council regards to affordability?

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The council have told me over the phone and via email that they had checked affordabilty at the start and he passed, but now say he failed a recent affordabilty assessment and cannot trace the original assessment.

They put it in an email to me, the conditions on which they will pay up.

I have also kept all my emails from them, plus texts from the tenant, full of promises and excuses.

I don’t think this will be easy as you have said. I think any battle with council will be pointless and a total waste of time.

If this person has CCJs or previous eviction then he has nothing to lose by staying put. So you could maybe let it ride for a few months to see if things settle down rather than going eviction route.

Keep a paper trail. No way would I agree to councils condition.

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Have you lodged deposit, issued prescribed info, how to rent guide, gas safe etc?

Put a firm (realistic) date on any correspondence with tenant in order for any rent arrears to be cleared by otherwise they are remaining in breach of tenancy agreement which will result in termination. Best done as a letter.

I assume council have no part in managing the tenant?

If you did agree with council to keep tenant on, I would question how enforceable this actually is. I seriously doubt the council would have much room to pursue you if they paid arrears and you got rid afterwards. Though they may want to see a signed new tenancy agreement before paying up. Id be weary of any such agreement.

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Yes, tenant has all the gas safety, energy efficiency rating of the house, how to rent guide.

The council’s website states they offer managers full support and management during the tenancies. They do regular visits to check the house is well looked after, but playing no part in collecting rent.

You have now learnt what many .
of us have known for years . You CANNOT trust the local Councils .They will LIE to you to get anyone off their housing list. If they have a Tenant for you it will likely be a problem tenant

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The Council are not your friend. They are trying to place tenants that no other landlord would accept with unsuspecting landlords and they will provide no support to you to manage the consequences.

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How do you know the council go in and check the premesis ? Typical council promises . All fur coat and no k

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did you do any checks on the tenant or did you just accept what the council said ?

if you are able to check CCJs before the tenancy began and find there are some then the Council has knowingly or incompetently (probably the former) stiffed you. I would not agree to the Council’s terms but hire a litigation solicitor and ask the Council to rehouse the tenant failing which you might sue for something along the grounds of fraud or misrepresntation or negligence.
You need to be sure of your ground when taking on a council but I believe it is normal practice to shift delinquent tenants onto the prs with scorn for prs lls.

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@Richard47 I have been been disciplined and sacrificed a lot to be able to rent out property, like so many who do. The default position is that UC gets paid to tenant and only paid direct to landlord if the tenant defaults. Even when direct payment is made to landlord the tenant can stop this. Look at the figures for UC rent arrears and then you might think it’s not quite the easy ride you have suggested.

Who decides what a fair rent is? Those who decide how much UC will get paid?? Like everything the market dictates the price!

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once the L/A are involved with a tenant/landlord payment it will always be a headache , the L A will always consder the landlord to be the bad guy as he is the easiest one to shaft

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As it happens, I already charge lower rent than similar properties in the area command. As I have no agent fees, I can do this. People who let to agents have extra charges, which means higher rent.

@Niteowl as do those with mortgages.

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Agreed not a UC tenants are the same. A few ruin it for the many and my point is that LAs amplify the problem by pishing the bad ones onto lls in the private sector saying that they are great…Not all lls are the same either.

Here we seem to have a case of a bad UC tenant that has been missold by the LA to a ll. There will be trouble and it already has started. If the ll can prove the mis-sale he should be protecting his position and not get deeper in with the LA. On the face of it it appears scandalous and should be actionable.

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If you, like I are sad enough to listen to the evidence re the rental reform white paper (WP) the LAs were out in force requesting the changes in the WP.

One Westminster weasel said all the evictions were S21s and so stop S 21 and you will make eviction harder (inference being they were arbitrary and unfair although that was not stated - but a clear inference nevertheless as he was stating it would reduce evictions ). What he didn’t say was that those S21s were served because S8s mandatory grounds were uncertain and took longer; and no reason is required for an S21 but commentators and ad hoc evidence points to the reasons being mandatory S8 grounds.

This is war with the LAs. They have a terrible problem housing people who make poor tenants thorugh ASB or affordability or both . It is a tragic problem of society and we all have to our bit but lying to a landlord and wrecking his business is a step too far. There is no better time like now to go on the offensive with a case like this. You might even attract crowd funding.

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Richard what the hell are you talking about?! Regardless of what type of landlord they are is totally irrelevant!! Any tenant working or not should be paying the rent required!! It’s people like you who give UC tenants a bad name! Why should any landlord let out THEIR property that has cost hundreds of thousand pounds to suit a certain criteria of people? It should be the government increasing LA Rent limits especially when the private sector is helping them to not commit to building more affordable housing?!! Instead of criticising the PRS criticise the government and start lobbying your MP to increase rent allowances and to ring fence housing payments paid to ALL benefit claimants and to also pay the landlords direct! Like it or not there are far more bad benefit tenants than there are working tenants because we genuinely do have a generation of people who chose a benefits lifestyle!
I am also on UC and disabled so I’m not a landlord and I think you say in an earlier comment (on another thread maybe) that you find you have more money to spend now than you did when you were employed because you’re a carer for your disabled daughter. I have to ask how much was you earning because it must have been below minimum wage if you are honestly better of on carers allowance paid at £69.70 pw!!! Unless you are talking about your daughters money? Even then I’d need to question how you have more money!! Before my disability I worked from being 15 years old (49 now) which in the grand scheme of things is still not very long but I used to go on holiday 3 times a year could live in a better home with a garden that I cherished and was sad to leave but I couldn’t use stairs and I was paying an extra £300 out of my benefits but if I could have stayed I would have happily would have lived on toast and paid that rent (I did for 2 years was there 6 altogether) and my landlord was amazing and it took me 18 months to find an ESTATE AGENT who I begged to please ask the landlord to look at all my bank statements, call at my home unannounced and see how I have kept my home and my landlord at the time gave the agent their bank statements showing if never ever missed or reduced a rent payment in 6 years so I was incredibly lucky and I am in a very respectable area where people take pride in their gardens and I’m next to the canal and woodland but it’s a ground floor apartment and I am desperate to try move somewhere with a garden but so far I can not find a landlord who will even hear me out and I don’t blame them!! So my suggestion to you is contact your MP and get lobbying for the changes I have suggested to UC above and hold the government to account for its failings!! I’m sick and tired of seeing people on benefits thinking that those who work hard or have properties to rent out or just more money expect those people to give them a share or help!! We are all born with the same opportunities and have a chance to get to the best we can be and make good choices and sound financial decisions. I blame myself for not wanting to be tied down by a mortgage as I saw areas that used to be nice turn in to hovels so I just rented and I regret that now but I certainly do not blame landlords or anyone else for that matter!! If you won the lottery tomorrow I can guarantee you wouldn’t be back on this forum or this website looking for people on UC and offering to buy them a house or you buy a house they can rent from you lol you’d be gone not caring about anyone else struggling on benefits so don’t expect others to either!!

Makes me so angry :rage:

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It’s important to keep in mind that the landlord / tenant agreement is one thing BUT the council has a separate relationship with their “customer”
There is NO agreement between the landlord and the council unless it’s on paper signed by a senior official and even then they are not on your side. You are a solution to today’s problem. Tomorrow is someone else’s.
If councils respected us they might do a better job.

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Hi Julie
Sadly, pretty much everything you state and believe confirms, rent charges will continue to climb. The discussion is not about social rent landlords. Debt traps on citizens will continue to be implemented etc. For your philosophy on life, everyone born with the same opportunities, the reality is exactly the opposite. You also really don’t understand the bigger picture of what is going on.