OpenRent Community

Problem with tenant

Hi , could someone give me advise please.
Tenant vacated the house 1 month ago , his stuff ( few things)still in the property . He said he will empty the house soon and decorate it and then would like to give notice period , so he asked for 2 months. He didn’t pay last month Rent and he is not answering now . I don’t know whether to access the property and discard the stuff . I am loosing money . Unable to advertise the property. Thanks in advance for your advise.

His tenancy agreement has not run out ?

It is on rolling contract .

I think you have to apply to seek possession through the court and that can take time.

According to contract , as it is rolling one … it was terminated.
He already moved out and living in the different house.

I think they have to give you formal notice of leaving before you can get back into the house

They already left the house and I don’t know where they moved to . Not responding to emails or phone. It is really frustrating . I been waiting for last 6 wks.

I can sympathise sorry you are going through this

Its been abandoned. I know what I would do

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Hi Collin, what would you do? Thx

What would you do about the stuff? Would you discard them?

I would cahange the locks and wait for him to contact .I would put a notice of abandonement on the door, Keep belongings for 30 days and then scrap

Thank you Collin. Will do that.

Beware that course of action Subha.

I understand and concur with Colins’ sentiments, but having done exactly that on one occasion, I was facing an illegal eviction charge from the council. It only needed the tenant to sign his formal complaint and I would have been prosecuted. a very close shave…

You will need to obtain a possession order from the court, or a letter from the tenant acknowledging he has vacated the property, and wishes to terminate his contract.

Thank you for message Chris. If he is not responding to emails or messages and he didnt pay last month rent … where we stand and how long it takes to get the court order?
With illegal eviction… what charges are they going to implement … is it money we need to pay ? Thx

Hi Chris,would you mind explaining … how did you manage that situation with council ? Thx

I would imagine there is something written in the tenancy agreement that the property is only allowed to be unoccupied for a certain period of time.

If the tenant has moved out and providing the above is written in the signed contract, he’s breached the tenancy.

You are most likely l better off telling him to remove his belongings and you won’t take him to court for the rent arrears.

If you need to apply to get a court order, it’s likely to take months and cost a considerable amount.

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Hi Lindsey,
Thank you for message.
In the contract they explained that it should not be unoccupied for 14 days. I sent an email asking them to empty the stuff. Will wait for 1 wk .

Lindsey is completely wrong. The only absolutely correct way of getting a proper possession is to serve either a section 8 or section 21 notice and thereafter apply to the courts. The courts are closed for possessions until 24th August 2020 and this was from I believe 24th March 2020 due to Covid-19.

There is a huge back log of eviction cases waiting to be heard due to the court closure for eviction hearings, and I would expect that due to this, it would take around a year for an eviction to actually take place.

Colin3’s advise is probably the best where you have to stick an abandonment notice on the door and have evidence of this and following the notice period, you can take over the property. You also need to inform the Tenant of this by email and or by phone. However, even abandonment is not full proof as the tenant can still come back and state that his tenancy has not ended where he would be right.

In changing the lock, the tenant would have to contact you which is useful in that, you can negotiate terminating the tenancy at that point without giving him a set of keys. If he refuses, perhaps negotiate to write off his debt or if that does not work, offer him some money. This is one way of bringing the tenancy to an end.

The way a tenancy (which I assume is an Assured Shorthold Tenancy) works, is that you either start with a fixed term and thereafter if the tenant stays on, a statutory periodic tenancy arises or the tenancy could be a continuous periodic tenancy from the start.

The tenant does not have to move out if the fixed term comes to an end or if you have any clauses in the tenancy agreement stating that the tenancy ends after a certain period or date.

By law, if the tenant does not move out or does not end the tenancy, the only way to gain full possession is through the courts and if you don’t have your paper work right, you have to start all over again.

This is only one of the joys of being a landlord which is full of Draconian Laws.

Hope this is of help.

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Put the stuff in the garden so technically you haven’t got rid of it!

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