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Tenant not paying rent

(8 Posts)
Newmama99 Tue 04-Dec-12 15:02:50

My OH and I had a bad experience with a tenant whose rent was covered by housing benefits. She made some sorts of excuses with the council. At the end, it was the worst nightmare as we had to go through giving her notice (2 months) as per the short tenancy contract she had signed, she then refused to leave, so we had to go to court (and pay court expenses), she still refused to leave, then we had to to go court again (and pay court fees) for the bayliff, and then her 'rights' ended and she had no option but to leave. At the end it took 7 months to get her out of the property, we had lost about 7k sad

In you situation:

1. Please call the council and found out yourself. My partner took charge of the matters, and he did have a contact at the council who was very open with him.
2. Keep the dialogue with her, she might be genuine.
3. Check your legal arrangement with her. Did she sign a short term assured tenancy agreement? What would happen if she didn't leave at the end of January? Should you not give her notice anyway that her tenancy arrangement is coming to and end and that she would need to definitely leave then.
4. If the worst comes to the worst, and she left owing you rent, you could try going through the small claims court, if she is in employment there could be some attachement on her earnings.

Prepare yourself for every eventuality, and good luck.

DeltaUniformDeltaEcho Tue 04-Dec-12 14:54:24

They are pretty useless though with HB. I would ring them. When mine was delayed by them they were happy to tell the Landlord they were processing it and the hold up was their end.

She might prefer you to do that as at least then you know it isn't her. I was happy that my Landlord knew it wasn't my fault. I think they will also tell you if they have paid so at least you'll know.

As far as asking her to go now - you need to serve a notice. But actually, if you go via the courts it will take longer then her expected leaving date of January anyway.

LisaML01 Tue 04-Dec-12 14:47:54

Thanks all for advice - im going in for a spot check tomw evening. She does seem genuine but maybe im just being naive! Never again!

AndBingoWasHisNameOh Tue 04-Dec-12 14:19:54

You can start eviction proceedings if they are 2 months behind but it is a structured process and you may need to go to court if she won't leave. You need to look into this carefully or take professional advice. You can't just evict her unless she agrees to leave,

UnexpectedItemInShaggingArea Tue 04-Dec-12 14:19:50

Hi,

Sorry you are experiencing this.

Legally it's very unlikely you will recover your money if the tenant doesn't pay. By the time you go through the proper eviction process her tenancy will be at an end anyway.

It depends on what your gut feel is and how much you trust the tenant. They could be telling the truth or they could be playing the system - i.e. they know that they can't be evicted in this space of time so are getting away without paying.

I would book a property inspection asap to check she is keeping it in good condition - if she thinks she is going to lose her deposit anyway there may be no incentive for keeping it clean etc.

Have you provided a reference for her next property?

Apologies if I sound cynical - I have been through this exact scenario several times and it never ended well.

LisaML01 Tue 04-Dec-12 14:16:19

Thought i might suggest contacting them myself. I just wasnt sure what i could and couldnt say to the tenant in terms of making her pay or getting her to leave before Xmas

Cant you phone them yourself?

Its not unlikely that it really is their fault. Honestly, they are next to useless.

LisaML01 Tue 04-Dec-12 14:05:27

Hi - anyome got any advice on where i might stand with this?
My tenant is two months behind on the rent which is apparently paid by housing benefit - she is insisting that they are the ones causing the problem and that it will be sorted 'asap'. She is moving out in January anyway but by then she will owe 3 months rent and her deposit only covers one. Can i demand that she moves out immediately?
I feel like i dont have a leg to stand on at the moment!

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