It is important to have a well drafted tenancy agreement in place which covers every eventuality and meets all the necessary requirements in the event that a dispute might arise.
We are able to help draft an agreement to suit your needs and guide you through what should be included within the agreement to protect your position.
We will cover various aspects of the agreement such as;-
- Length of tenancy
- Both Landlord and Tenant obligations
- Service charges and Repairs
- Energy Performance Certificates
Gaining possession of your property
There are many reasons why a Landlord could wish to take back possession of their property.
Sometimes a Landlord may wish to gain possession of their property simply for their own personal reasons for example if they wish to sell the property or use the house for friends and family.
A Landlord does not always have to give a reason for wanting back their property but what they do have to be aware of is how they go about gaining possession to ensure they meet the legal requirements. If they do not follow the correct procedures, a Landlord could face severe consequences such as Court Proceedings against them.
There are times however when a Landlord may wish to gain possession due to the Tenants failure to pay rent or if they are in severe breach of the tenancy agreement.
The first step to gaining back possession of any residential property is by issuing the Tenant with the correct Notice. There are two types of procedures which can be followed.
1. Section 21 Notice
This method is generally used when the Landlord simply wishes to gain possession of their property through no fault of the Tenant but for their own personal reasons. The Landlord does not have to give a reason to the Tenant for requesting back possession of their property.
There are however strict notice requirements which Landlords are often unaware of and do not meet. We come across many invalid notices which have been served on Tenants and have to often start a fresh procedure to ensure the Landlord has met the requirements. This can lead to time delays, cost consequences and frustration for the Landlord.
We therefore advise that Landlords approach us at the outset to guide them through the process to ensure that the procedure is carried out correctly the first time round.
2. Section 8 Notice
This method can be used during the course of the tenancy but a good enough reason has to be given for doing so. There are several reasons which can be used for serving a section 8 notice but the most common used is generally rent arrears.
Two weeks notice is required and once this period has expired, the Landlord can then apply to the Court for a Possession Order.
It is important to understand that irrespective of which type of Notice you serve, if the Tenant does not vacate within the Notice period, a Possession Order will have to be sought from the Court before being able to legally evict them.
Generally, a Court Hearing is not required to obtain a Possession Order if you serve a s21 Notice. However, this is not always guaranteed and a Judge may request a Hearing if for example the proceedings are being challenged or defended by the Tenant.
In respect of a s8 Notice, a Court hearing is almost always necessary and you (or us on your behalf) will be required to attend Court to explain why it is you wish to evict the Tenant. The process however is very simple and generally hearings do not last very long.
If, however, you try to evict Tenants without following the correct procedures, you could face a compensation Claim and in some instances even criminal prosecution.
If you wish to obtain our expert guidance on how to lawfully evict a Tenant, or if you wish for us to represent you at a forth coming Court Hearing then please contact one of our qualified Housing Solicitors on 01754 897150.
Funding the eviction process
We understand that in most cases, when a Landlord chooses to evict a Tenant, it is often due to rent arrears and they are losing money by allowing the Tenant to remain living in the property.
Not only will there be fees involved to instruct a Solicitor to carry out the process but you will also be required to pay Court Fees.
We therefore understand the pressure on Landlords to keep costs at a minimum and have devised a range of fixed fee eviction schemes to include drafting and serving the initial notice through to the final stages of instructing Bailiffs to evict.
Many of our regular Landlord Clients are happy with the scheme we offer and return to us in the knowledge that we will not turn the eviction process in to a cost building exercise.
Please contact our Housing Team to find out more about our fixed fee schemes.