What to do when Tenants leave old dilapidated cars?

Hi there,

Seeking your advice.

Finally County court judge as awarded Possession of the property in 14 days, on 22 February 2021.

However, I foresee and have a reason to believe that, the tenants are potentially likely leaving their old dilapidated cars(Untaxed and MOT Failed) in property driveway.

Please advise who to approach and how to remove those cars from property premises legally, Without cause me any issues in foreseeable future in the event if the tenants fail to remove their cars including their belongings once tenants moved out.

I have contacted Local Police, Environmental Health council dept and CAB but no Joy at all.

I appreciate your time and any of your guidance and advice will be gratefully received.

Thank you all in advance.

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Try your local scrap yard.

Another landlord I know usually says at this point ‘wouldn’t it be a shame if someone pushed them out onto the public highway so that they can then be towed away’.


Depends on your contract
If chatttel can be disposed of as contract ends ( rather than the statutory 3 months) then call the people that buy scrap cars and sell them ( Gumtree or ask your metal merchants). You can keep the profits. You could make several hundred pounds ( haggle to get more for your money). Sell the parts on gumtree or to a mechanic.
Read your contract carefully and what it says regarding chattel so you don’t get caught out and have to reimburse them for the vehicles.


Love Davids idea… scraoyard may require the “logbook”

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I believe that under the Torts (Interference with Goods) Act, the landlord has to follow any clause in their contract about how long they keep the goods, (mine says 2 weeks) or in the absence of that it should be reasonable, (eg one month). The 3 month rule is only if the bailor owes money to the bailee and even then it is arguable whether it applies to involuntary bailees. During that time the landlord has to make several well documented attempts to return the goods to the tenant and at the end of the period may then dispose of them, although I believe that any profits belong still to the tenant. The landlord may not offset other costs from this profit. If there is a deposit then the landlord may seek to deduct their costs from this or they can sue the tenant.

We will all come and help you push them into the road at 1 am


We have a contract that permits disposal at the end of tenancy (this is common in student contracts as there is sometimes no space between tenancies)


Items left behind could pose a risk to other tenants, perhaps because they are blocking fire escapes. A landlord is under a duty to keep any communal areas clear and safe by virtue of the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 . Any failings could result in a claim in negligence, fines and potentially even imprisonment.


Phone up the local scrap car collection company and explain the situation( you might have to try a few) councils generally won’t help on private land. The procedure is fix a notice to the vehicle taking pictures giving a notice period include the date I think its 14-28 days from memory. The scrap collection company will then take the car away and pay you keep the receipt. In the unlikely event someone comes back to you you served notice and your liability is the money if any you got from the scrap company. Oddly when I went through this all the cars disappeared within 1 week. You may need to prove you own the land.


Yes, I agree that items can’t always be left at the property, but I think that just means the landlord has to carefully take them to a place of safety and store them until the date they are allowed to dispose of them.

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We have had to hold belongings for 3 months until I changed the contract. We had a tenant who collected their belongings 3 months to the date her contract terminated ( she called that day wanting to collect them). She was very savvy to legislation.
We did charge her the cost of her deposit for storage though.


Hello Alumhi,
Thank you for your help and providing me with Coodes Solicitors link. This is Great !

Hi David122,

Thank you for taking time to respod.Great !

This has proven to be a real problem as both the Police or Council don’t want to know as it’s a civil matter and private property. However, the moment you take action and push the car into the road you would be breaking the ‘law’.
However, the only way around this is to leave a laminated note on the window of the car explaining that the car has been abandoned on private property and unless it is collected within 30 days from X date then the vehicle will be removed.

I would also try and get a record of you attempting to contact the authorities to report the abandoned car, my email would be best and just advising them if/when you intend on having the car removed.

I’ve seen many disputes, similar. Owners coming back after the 30 days and then want compensating but generally the 30 day note is suffice in the eyes of the law.

The next problem you may have is disposing if the car legally and avoiding the ‘lamp post traders’ so use a national recycling network like www.removemycar.co.uk and they will handle everything for you.

Hope that helps.



Great advice ! Thank you.


What the contract says is legally important, but there’s another way. Think about this. Is the tenant likely to be using the clauses in the contract to gain a free storage period? Or are they just not bothered about the cars. The way I read your question, I suspect they aren’t bothered. So why not contact the tenant and ask a question, something like, do you have any idea of the scrap value of the vehicles? Or have you had them valued by a scrap merchant? The idea would be to plant a thought in the tenants mind that they will be leaving cash assets behind for you to reap the rewards of. You’d be surprised what a little reverse psychology can achieve. I’d imagine you’ll see a clear driveway when they go, especially if you can shoe horn into the conversation what you believe them to be worth.


This is a really good financial incentive for the tenant to remove his cars

Dear Bhim,

Been there too and can assure you that Police, Council, DVLA couldn’t care less if the vehicle is on private land. So I stopped wasting time reading legislation that are pretty much powerless. For instance, in another occasion relating a vehicle left on public road: I called the DVLA and this person told me that they won’t send anyone around to check the vehicle if only one complaining. Vehicle must be on public road without MOT and tax in orde to be investigated and eventually removed. So you have only one solution: push the car on public road and leave there.