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To ask on here for advice on eviction

(23 Posts)
YellowTulips Fri 04-Dec-15 20:11:06

My friend was served an eviction notice on her rented house yesterday and is understandably very upset.

I've seen a copy of the solicitors letter and its looks legit (know the firm and rang the contact number - all checked out).

She has been told not to contact the landlord apart from via the solicitor.

Background. She's been a Tennant for 6 years. Never defaulted on payment. Keeps the house in good order as best as possible (more to follow on this).

The rent has not changed in 6 years.

The house is not in a good state of repair. She has at her own cost decorated the living room and bedrooms. However, the bathroom is fungal and paint is flaking away. There is very visible mould in some rooms.

The LL has apparently promised to address these issues over the last 3 years and not done so.

There was a gas based issue recently which seems to have been a tipping point.

I strongly suspect that he is allowing the property to fall into a state of disrepair so she will be forced to move out and he can then make the repairs and charge higher rent.

Can anyone point me in the direction of good sources on her rights and if possible how to respond to the eviction notice.

Thank you in anticipation.

Arfarfanarf Fri 04-Dec-15 20:15:46

She should contact shelter for advice

YellowTulips Fri 04-Dec-15 20:16:25

Sorry - bumping...

Could really do with some advice

YellowTulips Fri 04-Dec-15 20:18:32

Thank you I'll google them now.

In general terms does anyone know if when you have been served an eviction notice can you fight it? Or is simply that the law favours the landlord?

HighwayDragon1 Fri 04-Dec-15 20:18:44

If she's been served notice, she'll have to look for a new place to live.

FlibbertigibbetArmadillo Fri 04-Dec-15 20:20:09

I would recommend citizens advice. However if she has been served proper notice I'm not really sure she can do anything unfortunately

AwakeCantSleep Fri 04-Dec-15 20:21:24

Hello. The landlord doesn't even need a reason to evict your friend. However If he wishes to end the tenancy he must follow proper procedure. Your friend should head over to forums.moneysavingexpert.com/forumdisplay.php?s=c9e9b856375ddf02137799ecffbc1658&f=16 and provide as much information as possible:

- start date of the AST
- initial fixed term
- date that rent is being paid
- deposit protected? When?
- date on the eviction notice (S21)

The clever people on MSE will be able to tell her if the eviction notice is valid.

Even if it is valid, your friend doesn't have to leave by the end of the two months given on the S21 notice. She can stay until evicted by bailiffs following a court procedure.

However, eventually the landlord will get his property back, so your friend ought to search for alternative housing.

MsJamieFraser Fri 04-Dec-15 20:21:45

what's been served? a section 21, or a notice to seek possession (NOSP)

if its a section 21, then she needs to start boxing her belongings up, and also telephone her local area office council/housing association ASAP. However please not a lot of LL are not bypassing the section 21 and going straight to the high court, which is immediate eviction.

If she has an assured shorthold tenancy (almost certainly the case) then once the fixed term of the tenancy has ended (usually the first 6 or 12 months). Then the landlord only needs to give 2 months notice to get possession of the property back no reason is needed.

GinBunny Fri 04-Dec-15 20:27:34

The landlord has served her notice, ultimately it's his house and he has every right to do that as does your friend. If he wants to do it up and rent it at a higher rent he's entitled to do that too. It is likely that the mould is due to condensation and that is really down to the tenant - if it's not being aired properly to allow moisture to escape then she may find that is deducted from her deposit, although it is difficult to say from what you have said. Unfortunately the law does favour the landlord if notice has been served properly as it is his house. Your friend could get advice from CAB but I think there is little she can do other than to start looking for a new place. It sucks but that's the way it is when you rent I'm afraid.

If she is thinking of applying for social housing they might require her to stay until the landlord has gone to court.

YellowTulips Fri 04-Dec-15 20:34:01

Thank you.

The letter says the eviction is served under section 21 (4)(a).

YellowTulips Fri 04-Dec-15 20:35:38

Sorry to be clear the mould is due to leaks that were reported to the LL that he has not fixed.

AwakeCantSleep Fri 04-Dec-15 20:39:45

Head over to MSE as I've suggested. S21 notices can be a tricky matter. If for example the deposit hasn't been protected in the timeframe required by the law, the landlord can only serve a valid eviction notice once the deposit has been returned to the tenant.

The state of repair of the property plays no role in this. The landlord will be able to evict your friend, the question is just how long it will take.

YellowTulips Fri 04-Dec-15 20:41:55

Thank you all for your responses.

That's been very helpful.

It is tbh what I expected that she needs to plan for finding new accommodation but understanding that sooner rather than later is very helpful.

Thank you all again for responding so quickly thanks

SelfRaisingFlour Fri 04-Dec-15 21:19:20

What had she actually been served? Is it a Section 21 (2 months notice), a Possession Order or an Eviction Order. There is a procedure that has to be followed and the timescales and advice will depend on what the actual document is.

Citizensadvice.org.uk and shelter.org.uk have information on the procedures. Shelter have a helpline number.

pluck Fri 04-Dec-15 21:50:48

Could it be a retaliatory eviction?

m.england.shelter.org.uk/get_advice/repairs_and_bad_conditions/repairs_in_private_lets/risk_of_eviction

LaLyra Fri 04-Dec-15 23:23:06

Shelter are a good place to get information.

Make sure she is warned about the fact that if she is hoping to get social housing and they advise her to stay until she is actually evicted and she gets notice from the County Court the LL can supersede this by going to the High Court. Councils, in particular, are woeful about informing people of this. High Court bailiffs mean an immediate eviction with an hour or two to gather the most immediate of belongings and then a trip to the council for emergency housing.

She would be well advised, once checking with Shelter that everything has been done as it should, to start packing sooner rather than later and making sure she has a grab bag (or a list at the very least) of the things she'd need for a few days if it gets to the High Court stage.

Ultimately she'll have to move. It's the LL's property and if he wants is back then he's entitled, once he follows the correct procedure, to have it back.

YellowTulips Fri 04-Dec-15 23:23:35

Thank you all again. MN at its finest.

Yes it is retaliatory-eviction in the sense that asking to keep basic standards in a property was cause to leave.

I've posted a picture that was not identifying. This is the best of it.

Anyway - bugger that LL - I'm helping her find a new place with a reputable LL and a long term contract.

Tx again for all your swift and sage advice.

YellowTulips Fri 04-Dec-15 23:25:45

And this... Just to show mould but it's not identifying

HelenaDove Fri 04-Dec-15 23:30:34

Er....no Ginbunny Mould is not always the tenants fault.

www.24dash.com/news/housing/2015-10-26-Cavity-Wall-Insulation-Social-Housing-Stock-Not-Immune-to-Complications

lilydaisyrose Fri 04-Dec-15 23:36:56

Where in the UK does your friend live? Advice in Scotland (for example) widely differs from advice on English private sector landlords eviction.

Not sure how/why state of repair matters. If the landlord wants his/her property back, s/he has the right to do it - as long as s/he follows the correct procedure.

BitterAndOnlySlightlyTwisted Sat 05-Dec-15 00:08:20

Your friend does not have to leave the property until the landlord has applied to the court for a possession order. The courts are quite busy at the moment and the landlord may not be able to get a court-date for a couple of months, and they cannot apply to the court for a possession order until the two month's notice on the S21 has expired.

Your friend has likely got at least three months, very possibly four months or longer to find alternative accommodation.

The issue of the deposit is absolutely crucial. It must have been protected and your friend must have been issued with the appropriate confirmation documentation, telling her which scheme has been used. No protected deposit means the S21 Notice is invalid and the application for possession will fail at court.

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