How do evictions works if tenants refuse to pay during this time?

I have two questions for more experiences landlords here, please share your wisdoms.
How do evictions works if tenants refuse to pay during this time? Do you take on someone who has a bank statement showing enough money for first months rent and deposit alone but the promise of more income due to work that is subject to lockdown or no lockdown?

A landlord still has to give six months notice even to a tenant who stops paying rent.
If you think they may be getting UC which includes housing costs which should be being passed on to landlord but they are not doing so you can apply to have the housing costs element paid directly to yourself.

I’m not the most long standing landlord but personally I wouldn’t take someone on the promise/hope that they may be getting income. Where’s that going to leave you if the income isn’t forthcoming and you have installed them in your property?


I’ve been at this for quite some time & have experienced this.

Firstly, select your tenant on the probability that their income is highly likely to continue to the level that will keep them paying. For example, an immigration officer (civil servant) is a job that the country is likely going to need forever. However, a travel agent is a risky bet right now. What’s happening in the jobs market will dictate which professions are a safer bet.

Secondly, take a tenant you find you can communicate well with. If it all goes wrong for them, good communication is essential to be able to bring about the best result. You’d be surprised how much tenants take notice of & value a good landlord.

Nothing is guaranteed, so in consideration of the 6 month eviction rule, I’m now taking guarantors for all properties. That’s really weeding out those that are a higher risk. I know it sounds like a dramatic measure, but it’s working well.

If they stop paying, as soon as they’re in arrears by 2 months, hit them with a section 21 notice. I’m afraid you’ll have to follow whatever protocol is in force at the time, but it’s the only way. Then you’ll need a separate case to recover funds owed, this is where a guarantor is valuable. You can start the action against the guarantor while the arrears are building. In this situation, I’d recommend retaining a collections agent, not the ones you see on TV though. They are a bit too visible & pricey. I use ARC in Derbyshire. They don’t need to be close to the property or to me, they just need to be efficient.

Nothing is definite, so I was taught a valuable lesson by an old property sage a long time ago. Prepare a defence before you need it. Be ready for an attack before it comes. You’ve already started by asking your questions, so good luck!


Hi Deborah Philip, thank you so much for your invaluable reply.

The prospective tennant is a “Electrical Modification Technician” with 40hrs/week contract, £23/week but was on furlough past few months, so i am unsure whether its appropriate to ask whether he is a key worker or not as this is of concern for us.

Also how do you suggest to assess whether you have good communication? Usually there is such a short period between making the decision and the tennant moving in.


That’s a hard call. There’s no rules to my knowledge that prevent you from asking questions about the persons employment status. I would be asking if it’s ok to write to his employer to ask when a return to work is expected. If theres nothing to hide, then I can’t see why a person would object.

About communication, well you get a feel for a person when doing the viewing. Ask yourself the question, do I feel comfortable with this person if I had to have a discussion that is about an unpleasant subject? Do I think they are rational in a crisis? There’s a host of questions to ask yourself, but imagine the worst & try to imagine how the discussion would go. You will then either reassure yourself of decide the applicant isn’t for you.

Crystal balls can be found on eBay. People’s circumstances change and you cannot account for every eventuality. Deborah Philip is spot on. Good, honest communication is key.

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