Ex Partner smoking cannabis in the property - Evication process

I rent to a lady with two children ( 1 remains a child < 16yrs), subsequently according to neighbours over the last year her estranged husband has started being at the property and depending on the level of rows lives in the house or in the garage! Whilst in the garage - according to the neighbour he is smoking cannabis. As I have to give notice to inspect all evidence is well are truly gone by the time I arrive. Does anyone have any experience of sorting this out / ending the tenancy, I have thought about asking the neighbour to report directly to the police? or have the neighbour contact me so I can call them, get an incident no and start eviction? any experiences of this would be welcome. p.s. she is also not keeping the property in good decorative order, black spot mold on upstairs ceilings - never had before with other tenants - so not one single fault!

Who did you sign the AST with?

Hi Graham, the tenant, (her father counter signed as guarantor) which was why I let the partial Local Council deposit past!

Is smoking cannabis in the garage really a problem? If so, perhaps tell your tenant that ‘it has been reported to you’ & if it continues you will ask her to leave. If you want her to leave you can issue a S21 but that may mean you have to go to court to evict her & she could stop paying rent or trash the property so not really something you want to do over a minor problem. Best just to talk to her about all your concerns.


Really ? Minor ? You smoke it yourself Tricia ?


Do you? and as its illegal if you give me your address I will report you! - let me know?

Thanks for that, I have put up with the neighbours complaints for a while. I will ask him if he wants me to mention it - its them that have to look at each other over the garden fence!

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how can it be minor if it is illegal ? Especially if that person drives a car

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76 pot terrace. CN 481S

Colin I may have got the wrong end of the stick,(I see you have updated your comment) if so apologies! - I thought you were condoning it! I know a lot of people do it, I am just fed up of the neighbours complaints and worried about whatever else he might be getting wacked out on and that if he passes out he might burn the garage down!

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no probs Steve45 . Not a chance condoning it. I was too brief with my answer . I did think you had misunderstood so I updated . No offence taken. I totally get your concern . I had a shop tenant like that . He died at 45. I have never even smoked. . . As a Landlord you are in a tight spot. I would ask the neighbours to complain to the police.

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Will do - Thanks Colin

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Hi Tricia, why would section 21 mean going to court? If they leave on or before final notice date then court isn’t required. It can be served under the clause of landlord needs their property back. I’ve served 21 in it’s own right…I have served with a covering letter advising I will add clause 8, 10, 12 and another couple of clauses based on mess, disturbance etc.and advised the tenant court costs will be added

S21 merely states the LL wants the property back - it doesn’t end the tenancy. The tenant may leave, and often they do, but if they don’t you would have to go through the court process to actually evict them. A correctly served S21 does mean the judge has to order possession to the LL but it may take quite a long time to get the property back.

I have had this with the tenants partner who had smoked pop in the ground floor flat, and the smell had emulated into the corridors and into the other flats. Proving it was one thing, as to denials pursued. Letters to all Flats were sent so as not to be accused of bias or prejudiced. It took awhile, but it did stop.M

Before you even consider a section 21, you should visit the tenant and discuss it with them, then send a letter summarising the meeting points discussed and the actions by either the tenant or yourself.

To serve a section 21 all the tenant documentation must’ve been completed otherwise it will be thrown out of court. Serving a section 21 does not mean you’re going to get the property back.

If you wish to claim back rent, you must use a section 8, pay £355. Court fees, submit evidence of the recent 12 to 24 months rent payments, debt to date, debt per day, And the court papers. This can be done online via PCOL, and depending on your areas Court list, you could wait after a couple of months before the court hearing. It’s easy to defend your case, but what you must be aware of is that you must not have any. Complaints about the property where you have not maintained it as this can delay the court case or have it thrown out of Court.

If you win your section 8 case, the tenant will be given between two and six weeks to vacate the property, if they do not vacate the court, you have to pay another £130 to go back to the courts for the bailiffs to go in to repossess the property. You have two choices of going to the court one is the county/Crown Court, which is the £130 fee, upon award, the bailiff will write to the tenant, giving them two weeks notice to vacate, or you can go the High Court route which will cost of approx circ thousand pounds, The award of Court will allow the baliffs to go in without tenant notice. This is normally a quicker route, but not always, if it is quicker you need to balance the time saved vv the rent lost and of course your or contractor availability to get the property back up to standard b4 reletting.

There are some other bits around the above which is 0nly a summary.

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Thanks a lot for such a detailed reply. From the level of detail it sounds like you have been through this yourself,which if so I am sorry. The last line of your penultimate paragraph made my eye brow raise “contractor availability to get the property back up to standard” this as since he has been back on the scene the property has become seriously neglected, to such an extent that I feel the bathroom will need replacing, the kitchen completely redecorating and whether the three ceilings with the black mold can be saved remains to be seen, many of the windows (yesterdays visit) now with handles broken and strained for want of tightening a screw and panels blown from slamming. I have started to serve her with written notices to bring the property up to standard in line with the decorative order clause in the Tenancy agreement, but I hope to accelerate things yesterday advising both sets of neighbours to call the police (or me) if cannabis is smelt on the premises again. Anyway thanks a lot Brian,

Just serve your section 21 and start the ball rolling. Stress is the interest you pay on delay. We may not have sect 21 for too much longer
I have had lots smoking dope in my properties dont expect the police to be in the least bit interested

Maybe next time dont take people on benefits or anything to do with the council , thats where you get most of your problems.
Its actually simple here, get your tenants out

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Voice your concerns with the guarantor, they are as much responsible for the costs of any missing rent and damage as the tenant.

You’re lucky. I had a tenant who turned my flat into a drug factory and ultimately spent some years in Wakefield prison. Thankfully the police asked me to let them in before kicking the door down so no real consequence, other than a few months lost rent.

I’ve also had tenants smoking cannabis in my flats which filtered through into the communal spaces, unacceptable to my other tenants, but quite frankly this is not your problem, unless the neighbour is a tenant of yours.

If the neighbour has a problem with it, they need to report it to the police themselves.

Does the tenant pay the rent?

I have just received my agents inspection reports and 50% of my tenants are living like pigs, actually that’s unkind to pigs, these tenants are worse. At the end of the day you cannot dictate to a tenant how they live, providing it is not affecting the fabric / fittings of your property.

Obviously if there’s mould growth you need to educate them on the causes and mitigation solutions, along with an instruction for them to clean it up with anti-fungal wash, unless there are issues with your property, e.g. damp or inadequate ventilation / heating etc.

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The cannabis issue isn’t really your problem.