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Single young mum with 2 kids about to be evicted - plse help

(169 Posts)
TheRhubarb Mon 13-Jun-11 10:56:19

My neighbour is a single mum with 2 pre-school kids, one just 8 months old. She's been living where she is now for more than a year and her contract is a rolling one with both owners of the house who are renting it out because they've split up.

The contract is signed by both parties and she pays her rent to a bank account in the wife's name.

He now has a new girlfriend and wants to move back into the property, giving her 2 months notice. But she didn't pay him a deposit which means she has no deposit to take to another house. 2 months doesn't give her time to find a new place or save up for the deposit she would need.

She's currently on maternity leave but will be a full time student in Sept and is receiving housing benefit, child tax credit etc.

He hasn't given her formal notice yet, he's coming at 12noon to tell her whether or not he wants to move back in and I'm going to be with her for support. My question is; obv he will have to give written notice but will his wife need to sign the eviction notice too?

Should she tell him that he'll have to evict her forcibly? Which he will need to do because otherwise she'll have made herself voluntarily homeless.

Any other advice before he comes round gratefully appreciated.

Cheers guys

LadyWithNoManors Mon 13-Jun-11 10:58:08

Contact CAB

PrinceHumperdink Mon 13-Jun-11 11:01:26

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

mollymole Mon 13-Jun-11 11:05:45

She need to contact CAB/Local Housing Authority/ and find out whether she can get help with a deposit.

The other side is that the guy and his former wife have a 'rolling contract' and of course they have to give the notice stated in the contract but why be aggressive with him - what is wrong with him giving the required notice and her moving out - the deposit she needs is not his fault

meditrina Mon 13-Jun-11 11:07:55

The notice period and whether both signatures are needed should be specified in the contract. She should take it with her to CAB for detailed advice.

Assuming that the co-owner knows of and agrees to the plan, then she should work on the assumption that the right paperwork will be forthcoming. It might buy her a little time whilst she waits for it to appear, but that's not going to make a material difference to her (as she has no prospect of saving up for a deposit).

Gooseberrybushes Mon 13-Jun-11 11:11:46

There will be a notice period. She won't be "voluntarily homeless" if she vacates the house having been given notice. In fact if she stays she may find herself in trouble if she needs a reference, and if she's looking at private tenancies with HB she may well need a good one.

Gooseberrybushes Mon 13-Jun-11 11:13:53

There should be no "eviction notice". If she is threatening to stay then the landlord should serve a written notice and possibly a section 21. The wife does not need to sign anything if the contract is with both: the fact that the rent is paid into her bank account is neither here nor there.

Gooseberrybushes Mon 13-Jun-11 11:15:23

I'm not sure either why two months is not enough time to find a new flat. In her position she is entitled to help, and that help should enable her to stay within the bounds of a civil contract.

Gooseberrybushes Mon 13-Jun-11 11:16:03

On the other hand she could appeal to the wife who will presumably lose income and hope that the delay in her arguing with her husband will work out in the tenant's favour.

PrinceHumperdink Mon 13-Jun-11 11:27:55

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Gooseberrybushes Mon 13-Jun-11 11:29:33

Then no wonder HB tenants are unwelcome if the state insists they breach contract before they get any help.

Gooseberrybushes Mon 13-Jun-11 11:30:10

Eviction costs a large amount of money and if there is no deposit, which the landlord was generous to offer, then there is no hope of recouping this.

TheRhubarb Mon 13-Jun-11 11:31:09

Her appt with the CAB is not until next week.

Originally the guy she dealt with told her that the rent would probably be long term. He gave her a one year contract on the understanding that it would be a rolling contract and even told her to sign her kids up for the local school, which she has done. She has made a life for herself here and rental properties are few and far between.

She has been advised that if he gives her notice and she leaves within that period then she has effectively made herself voluntariy homeless and wouldn't be so high up the council waiting list, whereas if she is evicted then they will be able to house her a lot quicker.

No it's not his fault she has no deposit, but it's not a nice thing to lead someone on into thinking they have a home for a good length of time and then say "well actually I've changed my mind, you need to go". Yes it's his right, but it's not nice all the same. She's a lovely lovely person who desperately wants to go to college and then Uni to study to be a midwife and had it all sorted. She can't save up for a deposit atm as she's not got any spare change left after rent and bills - she's already £600 in debt to the utility companies. As she's on housing benefit, most private landlords wouldn't take her as they state "no DSS". The council would house her if she is evicted but she'd have to take what they give her which wouldn't be round here (no council houses left here, all bought up) so it's a huge disruption to her and her kids. She already has her little boy in the local pre-school group ready for nursery in Sept.

TheRhubarb Mon 13-Jun-11 11:35:03

Gooseberry, yes it sucks but that's the way it is. Councils often won't house you if you have effectively agreed to the notice to quit, you have to be actually homeless and it states that it cannot be your fault, so you leaving the property voluntarily counts as you making yourself homeless.

She doesn't want to make an enemy of this guy and of course he is entitled to his house back, but neither does she want to be homeless with 2 children having to live in a B&B somewhere.

I'm sure it's happening up and down the country, but I personally know and like this girl and want to help.

Gooseberrybushes Mon 13-Jun-11 11:35:53

I am so impatient with people who are almost entirely state supported and then expect private landlords to pile in and support them as well. Maybe it's not nice, but then maybe he needs the house too, and it's his house, and there is a contract. Lots of people work hard: maybe he works hard too. Maybe he has needs too. It's not his fault rental properties are few and far between. It's not his fault she can't save up for a deposit. It's not his fault the council rules are as they are. It's not his fault she's in debt. But he has to pay hundreds of pounds so that he can live in his own home again?

PrinceHumperdink Mon 13-Jun-11 11:35:56

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Gooseberrybushes Mon 13-Jun-11 11:37:50

I understand you want to help. But you are advising her to load the bills on to someone else who probably doesn't have it to spare either.

Fifis25StottieCakes Mon 13-Jun-11 11:40:44

Our council provide a bond certificate which most landlords accept if she has to leave the property.

ScroobiousPip Mon 13-Jun-11 11:40:44

One joint LL can terminate the tenancy. But, it may be worth her checking with the wife that she agrees with her ex serving notice - IIRC, she can equally rescind the termination notice on behalf of both of them if she disagrees. Then it would be up to them to reach a compromise, or slug it out in court.

TheRhubarb Mon 13-Jun-11 11:45:27

Well aren't you sympathic! She isn't a freeloader. She's currently on maternity leave which runs out the end of July. She's living on her own and has plans for the future. Yes money is tight for her as it is for myself and dh who both work. As for loading the bills onto someone else - what other choice does she have? Should she just move out onto the streets with two kids?

She can't get a private rental so she has to go through the council and they won't house her unless she is evicted - those aren't her rules.

TheRhubarb Mon 13-Jun-11 11:46:36

That was to GB btw. Thanks everyone else for the constructive advice. I won't see her on the street, she can move in with us if all else fails. It's not her fault society is so screwed up that a single mum has to be out on the street before she gets any help.

TheRhubarb Mon 13-Jun-11 11:48:01

Oh and GB - he wouldn't have to pay the court costs, she would. The courts would rule in his favour see? So she pays the costs and although she would be entitled to legal aid, she'd still be left with a bill to pay and all that just so the council can house her. It's wrong but that ain't her fault either.

Gooseberrybushes Mon 13-Jun-11 11:48:59

I didn't say she was a freeloader but she is receiving housing benefit, child tax credit etc. and therefore someone else is paying, and now she expects someone else to pay again, this time a private landlord. She's going to make him do it by the sound of it. Don't pretend it's anything else Rhubarb. If it's eat or be eaten, she's going to eat. If I had no choice for my children, I would probably do the same. But no, I'm not sumpathetic. She has the power here, the landlord has none.

Gooseberrybushes Mon 13-Jun-11 11:49:56

How is she going to pay? She doesn't have any money.

"It's not her fault society is so screwed up that a single mum has to be out on the street before she gets any help."

I agree with that.

Gooseberrybushes Mon 13-Jun-11 11:51:27

And how is she going to pay for any damage to the flat with no deposit? He would have to go to small claims.

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