Section 21

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in House Buying, Renting & Selling
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  • TigletTiglet Forumite
    401 Posts
    jamesd wrote:
    What form of tenancy does the tenant have once they are living in the property after you gave notice and terminated the original one and they are now beyond the term for which the terminated AST was valid?

    At a minimum it sounds as though you're trying to leave them without a normal periodic notice period but instead vulnerable to accelerated reposession for being in the property after the end of the tenancy.

    You've given them notice and they haven't left. At this point, they have no right to remain in your house (although they have to pay rent if they do). OTOH, you have no right to force them to leave without a Warrant for Possession executed by a Bailiff.

    (If the tenant is on Housing Benefit and needs to be rehoused by the Council, they will probably have to wait until the day they are evicted before doing anything about it).

    If you don't want the tenant to leave, then you don't leave them in that position. Just arrange a new tenancy to start the day after the old one finishes, and repeat the process every 6 or 12 months.
  • TigletTiglet Forumite
    401 Posts
    clutton wrote:
    you cannot issue them with 2 months notice to quit (Section 21) until after June 30th.
    You issue Section 21 on 1st July
    2 months later (2nd Sept) you can apply to court for the court order to get them out.
    judge gives one months "stay of execution" (they must leave by 3rd Oct)
    tenants do not leave - so back to court, bailiffs appointed -
    mid-late Oct tenants evicted by baliffs

    Some of this has already been covered, so apologies for any duplication...

    You have to give two months' notice in the s21 notice, expiring on the date that rent is due (1st July in your example). In practice, that means between two and three months, so you would have to ensure that the tenant receives it not later than 30th April).

    You can then apply for the Possession Order on 1st July. The court then has to think about it for a while before deciding whether to deal with it under the accelerated process. If it does, you'll be granted a Possession Order. If not, you have to go to court to argue your case and, if you win, then you get your order. Whichever way they do it, this isn't something that happens straight after the exipry of the s21.

    The Possession Order normally has a 2-week notice period, although the tenant can ask for more time if they have exceptional circumstances. After this period, you can apply for a Warrant for Possession. Again, this isn't automatic since, regardless of the notice period, you actually have to wait until you have a physical, printed copy of the order before you can go back to court. If the typist hasn't typed it up, you just have to wait. Then you get your Warrant, at which point you will be given an appointment with the Bailiffs. With any luck, that's when you get your house back.

    To give you an idea of the real-life timescales, here is what happened to me:

    Early April: Issued s21 notice
    13th June: s21 notice expired
    9th September: Court hearing (not accelerated)
    23rd September: Possession Order expired
    15th November: Appointment with Bailiffs

    I don't think there was any undue timewasting involved here, so this is probably typical-ish. If it had gone through the accelerated process, it would have saved a few weeks, but it's still a long, slow drag.
  • TigletTiglet Forumite
    401 Posts
    prudryden wrote:
    Since your example was one about bad tenants. Can you issue a S8 as well as a S21? Or does it have to be one or the other?

    Yes, you can but I wouldn't recommend it.

    If you stick to the s21 route, you can go for "accelerated" proceedings, so long as the tenant doesn't contest it. This doesn't require a hearing, so you can get a Possession Order a bit more quickly.

    If you have anything else, then it has to go to a full hearing. If you claim that the tenant is persistently in arrears, has been intimidating neighbours or whatever, then the court has to get the details from you, ask the tenant for their comments, schedule a hearing, and then come to a decision. Even so, you might not win.
  • clutton_2clutton_2 Forumite
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    re what tenants think of a Section 21 included in the AST - i tell my new tenants, that this is a legal requirement, which i will not be put into force unless the tenancy agreement terms are breached - they all seem perfectly happy with that - not one of them has ever said "i'd best leave now then" as the Section 21 date arrives.

    Re issuing a second Secton 21 - once i have had a tenant for 6 months, i can usually tell if they are going to ber *iffy*, and so i have never had to renew one yet - but that's not to say that i won't in the future.
  • frankleefranklee Forumite
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    clutton wrote:
    re what tenants think of a Section 21 included in the AST - i tell my new tenants, that this is a legal requirement, which i will not be put into force unless the tenancy agreement terms are breached - they all seem perfectly happy with that - not one of them has ever said "i'd best leave now then" as the Section 21 date arrives.

    Have you considered they are happy because you have deceived them as to what the S21 actually is?

    It's a blanket "I want my house back" on the expiry date from the landlord. For an S21 to be effective the tenant does *not* need to be at fault. The landlord could action the notice for any reason whatsoever, he may wish to sell the property for example.

    In fact I think attaching conditions to an S21 like saying you won't action it unless the tenancy agreement terms are breached voids the notice because a S21 notice is not meant to be conditional.

    It *is* a myth that serving notice at the start speeds up getting possession. An S21 cannot expire before the end of the fixed term so you have the first four months to issue the notice and have it expire then.

    Four months should be enough time to decide if you want to keep the tenants or not. You'd need to make that decision anyway if you issued a S21 at the start so as to let the tenant know if they can stay as Tiglet said:
    Tiglet wrote:
    If you don't want the tenant to leave, then you don't leave them in that position. Just arrange a new tenancy to start the day after the old one finishes, and repeat the process every 6 or 12 months.

    You'd need to arrange this at month four at the latest or the tenant may well have started making arrangements to move.

    So I can't see issuing the notice at the start as a matter of routine achieves anything except making tenants you may want to keep feel insecure and make them more likely to leave. If you lie about what the notice means all you are doing is to teach tenants to ignore S21 notices which means more landlords having problems getting their house back.
  • is there a website which lets you download all the appropriate forms needed by a landlord letting out a property?
  • jamesdjamesd Forumite
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    clutton wrote:
    i tell my new tenants, that this is a legal requirement

    What type of tenancy do you think your tenants have once the latest date on the section 21 has passed?
  • prudrydenprudryden Forumite
    2.1K Posts
    jamesd wrote:
    What type of tenancy do you think your tenants have once the latest date on the section 21 has passed?

    According to Franklee - you can put the expiry date as after ****** which I guess means the section 21 never passes. :confused:
    FREEDOM IS NOT FREE
  • TigletTiglet Forumite
    401 Posts
    antoniomontana:
    There are a few sites out there that have the kind of info you're looking for - search for "landlord uk" on any search engine and you'll get several.

    What I found was a better starting point, and has example forms plus lots of background information, is "The Which Guide To Renting And Letting". This book is designed to be equally applicable to landlords and tenants, so it presents a very balanced view of how to deal with everything.
  • frankleefranklee Forumite
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    prudryden wrote:
    According to Franklee - you can put the expiry date as after ****** which I guess means the section 21 never passes. :confused:

    LOL, are you joking?

    It's already been covered. The landlord can seek possession anytime after the date. Therefore that is the last day the tenant has permission to stay.

    Post #48
    Tassotti wrote:
    Dates are extremely important when issuing notices. If AST begins on 1st Jan, then notice must state LL requires property AFTER June 30th.

    Post #52
    Tiglet wrote:
    You've given them notice and they haven't left. At this point, they have no right to remain in your house (although they have to pay rent if they do). OTOH, you have no right to force them to leave without a Warrant for Possession executed by a Bailiff.

    I'm still waiting for a convincing explanation of why serving a S21 at the start is better than waiting till you want the tenant to leave. You have to make that decision at four months anyway or the tenant with a served S21 may well start looking to go. So far the only reason has been you might forget to serve the notice, which if you've got bad tenants is unlikely IMO. What if you've got good tenants and forget to let them know they can stay, you could "accidentally" evict them!
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