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Annoyed and Backed into a Cornor

(17 Posts)
IceBergJam Fri 19-Apr-13 14:06:06

My house is in negative equity. It is my old house I had before I meet my husband. It is in need of repair.

I was renting to someone on housing benefit. We kept the rent below market value because she was a single mother with a child, and it didn't seem worth putting it up for an extra £50.

I have quarterly inspections. I tried to rectify items deemed necessary. Last year I had tiles on the roof reset and repointed, new fridge freezer, blinds, insulation around the back door, and delt with damp in the bathroom. The house is very old.

She went through the agency and asked if she could go on a monthly renewal, because she is on the council housing list. I agreeded, and took it as the correct time to put it on the market at a reduced price. It has been on the market for four months. She asked if I would repaint and recarpert. I said no, because she was moving out soon.

She has had no progress with the council. I received a phone call today from the letting agency saying that she had the council go around to do an inspection, and I have a long list of items that need correcting. The roof has been mentioned again, same problem as last year. I will get someone out to sort this this week, and see if I can claim on the insurance given that the roof was fixed less than a year ago, (i'm wondering whether it was a crap job now, can tiles come loose after a year?), but some of the other items are all to do with it being a very old house, so floor levels are out, step levels, piping under the boiler, boiler outlet, banaster not going to the top of the stairs, no double glazing upstairs etc. I have yet to receive the list. The agency also said she has submitted a list of other items that need doing, repainting, carpeting, double galzing front door etc.

I can't see how I can fix these without re moduling the whole house. I know the house was in a bad way which is why I had decided to put it up for sale when the oppurtunity came alone. It is at a cut price. She wasn't intending to stay there.

I feel like she is forcing my hand to evict her so that she can get to the top of the housing list, otherwise would she just not look for somewhere else to live if she was that unhappy? Would she really expect me to re do floor levels, re module the boiler etc when she plans to move out, and it is on the market?

This is going to run into the thousands, which we really don't have, and we are selling it for £15,000 under what I paid.

ClearlyDad Fri 19-Apr-13 14:39:49

Evict her. Paint it white. It's easier to sell an empty house.

IceBergJam Fri 19-Apr-13 14:44:57

I am giving notice today. I thought she was nice.

specialsubject Fri 19-Apr-13 15:19:53

single glazing, uneven floors etc are not the sign of a slumlord. You've dealt with leaks and damp, as you should, and are looking into a possible new leak.

you don't rent it at a premium price. You rent to someone on HB, which many landlords cannot do.

give this entitled woman her legal notice. The game with the council may or may not work, but that's not your problem - start the process to get her out so you can sell.

IceBergJam Fri 19-Apr-13 16:13:49

Do I have to notice on the day the rent is due?

ClearlyDad Fri 19-Apr-13 16:33:53

That will depend on your tenancy agreement. To be safe, dig it out and follow the agreement you originally made.

FasterStronger Fri 19-Apr-13 16:47:36

I would take a deep breath read your tenancy agreement a few times and work through her list.

I suspect loads of it is just rubbish. you need to know what the real issues are and what you can ignore.

NatashaBee Fri 19-Apr-13 16:56:54

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

IceBergJam Fri 19-Apr-13 17:29:23

I have to dig out my contract from somewhere. I don't understand why she has to be given two months notice when it's a rolling months contract.

IceBergJam Fri 19-Apr-13 17:30:36

Actually I do understand, it means I can give notice every month.

IceBergJam Fri 19-Apr-13 17:33:07

Nathasa, my stepfather had the same issue a few months back. Selling his deceased parents house, tennant refused to leave because had no where to go, he had to evict, so that the council would rehome.

I would never be a landlord after this.

flow4 Fri 19-Apr-13 17:38:43

As I remember (and I'm no expert), it's a rolling month's notice on her side, and always two on yours. you can give notice any time, but she gets two whole months, so those effectively start the next day the rent is due.
She won't get priority because she's evicted - things don't work like that these days because there simply isn't enough council housing - she'll just get a few extra points. If she's hoping this is a short cut to a council house, she may be in for a nasty shock.

almostanotherday Fri 19-Apr-13 17:39:52

A rolling contract means you need to give her two months notice but she only needs to give you one months notice.

CokeFan Fri 19-Apr-13 17:46:51

If you serve the notice incorrectly then it's not valid [bitter experience emoticon]. For a rolling tenancy it should be 2 months notice, starting (and ending if she pays monthly) on the day rent is due. We had problem tenants who sometimes had HB (paid 4 weekly), sometimes worked (paid monthly) and sometimes just didn't bother paying. Our agent did the section 21 notice wrong and it took ages to get them out.

If she wants to be evicted then it will cost you money for court and bailiffs and it will take a few months.

formicaqueen Fri 19-Apr-13 18:05:35

Evict her or raise the rent by 100.

lalalonglegs Fri 19-Apr-13 18:37:48

If you are using an agency, they should be able to issue the correct eviction notice (it's called a S21). If you don't think they will do a good job of it - and you will need it to be spot on in order to take her to court if things come to that - then you can get a form with the correct wording a guidance on how to fill it in at Landlord Zone.

Perhaps putting up the rent would be the easiest way of getting her out though...

wendybird77 Sat 20-Apr-13 07:54:42

Some of that list you can ignore. You don't have to paint and recarpet. You don't have to double glaze anything. You do need to fix leaks. I agree with lala - put the rent up and hope she goes. Eviction can be a very long process and if she wants council housing, may get very drawn out. I know people who got notice from their landlord last August. They didn't leave until March and even then they left because they wanted to, not because they actually got an eviction notice.

Or you could talk to her. Just make an appointment and tell her you can't afford to make non-essential repairs. You don't want the relationship to go sour, but you will have to raise the rent substantially and over a long period of time to cover new carpet and paint. As you are trying to sell it doesn't make sense for either of you to do that. She may see reason.

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