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    • JackJones456
    • By JackJones456 7th Feb 18, 12:33 PM
    • 31Posts
    • 12Thanks
    JackJones456
    Assured Shorthold Tenancy Problem
    • #1
    • 7th Feb 18, 12:33 PM
    Assured Shorthold Tenancy Problem 7th Feb 18 at 12:33 PM
    Please can anyone advise me?

    In September 2017 I signed a 12 month Assured Shorthold Tenancy agreement with Estate Agent/Landlord for a private letting. I have 3 children, 2 of which are disabled and in receipt of DLA. All children are settled into the local school with the 2 disabled children being supported by teaching assistants.

    I am also the DWP appointee for my mum who is in social housing (small 2 bed bungalow) 2 minutes from where I live as I am her full time carer.

    I have never missed a rent payment everything has been paid by direct debit every month since my move.

    I do have to say that I am having to 'top up' the rent by 150 per month which is a struggle.

    The Estate Agent called me yesterday and told me that the Landlady wants to sell the property I am renting and that he will be serving a Section 21 Notice on me shortly. I have only been in the property since end September 2017 and the tenancy is for 12 months. I am absolutely shocked and upset to say the least.

    I've been in touch with social housing who are going to get back in touch with me in the next 2-3 weeks. I have also spoken to Shelter. Shelter told me that if I move out upon receipt of Section 21 then the council will consider me as being intentionally homeless.

    I am worried sick as I need to stay in the local area as I have to care for my mum and also my 3 children are established in the local school.

    I have read my Assured Shorthold Tenancy agreement and there are no clauses about the Landlady breaking the tenancy, I am not in breach of my tenancy. I am worried sick. I would really like to be socially housed as I had to move previously when my tenancy came to an end as my other Landlord wanted to sell the property.

    All this disruption is unsettling and I have had to tell the children a little lie that I am thinking of moving as the house is too small as they are too young to hear this news.

    Please can anyone advise me, do I just sit it out and make the Landlady get an eviction in the Court as otherwise the council will say I have made myself intentionally homeless. The thought of living in a hostel is worrying and it has been said that if I don't agree to a hostel they may put my kids in care! One child is autistic the other is under CAHMS, Please advise me.
Page 3
    • Simonr66
    • By Simonr66 7th Mar 18, 2:59 PM
    • 22 Posts
    • 20 Thanks
    Simonr66
    The EPC is valid for 10 years, however if you weren't given a Gas Safety Certificate on the day you moved in then a section 21 cannot be served. See this article https://landlordadvice.co.uk/one-chance-to-serve-the-gas-safety-certificate/
    • JackJones456
    • By JackJones456 7th Mar 18, 3:49 PM
    • 31 Posts
    • 12 Thanks
    JackJones456
    Thanks Simon for the link and the very useful information.
    • Simonr66
    • By Simonr66 12th Mar 18, 3:18 PM
    • 22 Posts
    • 20 Thanks
    Simonr66
    You're welcome, come back and let us know how you got on with the Landlord
    • JackJones456
    • By JackJones456 13th Mar 18, 11:52 AM
    • 31 Posts
    • 12 Thanks
    JackJones456
    Update:- Received Section 21 stating I have to be out of property by end of May. No Gas Safe Boiler Certificate.

    Agent called Saturday lunchtime, I missed the call, then his offices shut.

    Today (Tuesday) received an early morning call and the agent said 'you do realise that there is a viewing taking place at 11am today as a message was left on your voicemail (I don't have a voicemail)' I said 'no and what's more there will be no viewings', agent said 'you going to be one of them then, I shall inform the landlady that you are being obstructive as you legally have to give us access'. I said 'put it all in writing' Agent declined and said 'no, we don't have to put anything in writing'. He then went on to say we will have to wait until you are out the end of May but we can come when you're out if you don't want to be there'.

    Feeling intimidated, just waiting for the next move Agent may/will take.
    • Comms69
    • By Comms69 13th Mar 18, 11:56 AM
    • 2,970 Posts
    • 2,939 Thanks
    Comms69
    Update:- Received Section 21 stating I have to be out of property by end of May. No Gas Safe Boiler Certificate.

    Agent called Saturday lunchtime, I missed the call, then his offices shut.

    Today (Tuesday) received an early morning call and the agent said 'you do realise that there is a viewing taking place at 11am today as a message was left on your voicemail (I don't have a voicemail)' I said 'no and what's more there will be no viewings', agent said 'you going to be one of them then, I shall inform the landlady that you are being obstructive as you legally have to give us access'. I said 'put it all in writing' Agent declined and said 'no, we don't have to put anything in writing'. He then went on to say we will have to wait until you are out the end of May but we can come when you're out if you don't want to be there'.

    Feeling intimidated, just waiting for the next move Agent may/will take.
    Originally posted by JackJones456


    Why not just change the locks?
    • fairy lights
    • By fairy lights 13th Mar 18, 12:09 PM
    • 8,577 Posts
    • 28,536 Thanks
    fairy lights
    Seriously change the locks or they'll start letting themselves in to do viewings.
    • Out, Vile Jelly
    • By Out, Vile Jelly 13th Mar 18, 12:14 PM
    • 3,989 Posts
    • 13,575 Thanks
    Out, Vile Jelly
    The agent is a confirmed idiot. For your own peace of mind change the locks.

    If you want further reassurance, speak to Shelter or make an appointment at your local CAB and take a copy of the contract with you.
    They are an EYESORES!!!!
    • m0bov
    • By m0bov 13th Mar 18, 12:33 PM
    • 1,298 Posts
    • 879 Thanks
    m0bov
    Change the locks and call 999 if they try and gain entry or start banging doors.
    • Simonr66
    • By Simonr66 13th Mar 18, 2:46 PM
    • 22 Posts
    • 20 Thanks
    Simonr66
    As I previously stated if you weren't given a gas safety certificate at the time you signed the contracts and got the key then a section 21 cannot be served https://landlordadvice.co.uk/one-chance-to-serve-the-gas-safety-certificate/ . If as you say there is no break clause the earliest you can be served notice is 2 months before the end of your contract and inline with your contract dates.


    You need to seek legal advice asap and also complain to the redress scheme the agent belongs to as from what you are saying he is breaking the law.
    • scriv
    • By scriv 14th Mar 18, 12:15 PM
    • 91 Posts
    • 71 Thanks
    scriv
    I agree with Simonr66 - you do need to seek legal advice asap.

    The agent is acting as if you have a 6 month AST and not the year one that you believe you have..

    Keep all paperwork and log everything
    • wesleyad
    • By wesleyad 14th Mar 18, 12:30 PM
    • 221 Posts
    • 174 Thanks
    wesleyad
    The agent knows you are vulnerable, possibly thinks you don't know your rights and is trying to strong arm you. What you need to do is fight back (not literally!).

    You need to express in clear terms to the agent that you have contacted Shelter and CAB and they both agree that you cannot be evicted before September. If the agent does not agree with this they are welcome to take you to court (would make great viewing as they explain to the judge "AST's aren't worth the paper they're printed on").

    However in the meantime any further correspondence on this matter will be deemed harassment (it might even be worth popping into the local police station and explain to them, they won't do anything but it will be on record if anything happens in the future and will be massively to your advantage).

    A lot of these jokers are used to years of ignorant tenants, but now the tenants are becoming more knowledgeable and they don't like it.
    • Smodlet
    • By Smodlet 14th Mar 18, 1:58 PM
    • 3,171 Posts
    • 6,291 Thanks
    Smodlet
    We can offer all the support and advice you can handle but only you can deal with your situation. Sorry if this is too blunt for you.

    I think you need to breathe, count to ten (or twenty/one hundred) tell yourself you can do this then stop stressing and start addressing! What else are you going to do? Roll over, give in and make yourself and your children homeless? The LA is a bully; you can stand up to him or not, the choice is yours.

    How to change a lock barrel:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X9A915L_mlk

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cppvsKj_3QQ

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aDmPHPIHDno


    As stated, the section 21 notice is invalid on two counts that we know of: You have a 12 month AST and no gas safety certificate. If you are correct about the term of your tenancy, it is six months too soon for them to issue the 21 notice. If you definitely did not receive the gas safety certificate before your tenancy commenced (you haven't lost it, have you?) the section 21 is invalid.
    What is this life if, sweet wordsmith, we have no time to take the pith?
    Every stew starts with the first onion.
    I took it upon myself to investigate a trifle; it had custard, jelly, soggy sponge things...
    • JackJones456
    • By JackJones456 15th Mar 18, 12:53 PM
    • 31 Posts
    • 12 Thanks
    JackJones456
    Thanks everyone for all your replies.

    Update: Wrote a load of notes down, took a deep breath and called the Agent everything. He was adamant there was a break clause. Within half an hour the property had been taken off the market. Will return when I receive the next S21.

    LA have not been very helpful, telling me I may have to ignore the next S21, and it may have to go to Court for Agent to get possession order, this will take me to well towards the end of the year, however, they did say I had very strong grounds to be socially housed within the local area, so hopefully this will be the case when the time comes. Dread the thought of bailiffs turning up after the expiration of the P.O. but will just take one step at a time. For now I am safe and I want to thank everyone on this forum for all the great advice and support you have all provided.
    • Smodlet
    • By Smodlet 15th Mar 18, 3:11 PM
    • 3,171 Posts
    • 6,291 Thanks
    Smodlet
    Well done. Please remember if you do as you are told like a good, little tenant and just leave, you have made yourself homeless in the eyes of the council. If you dig your heels in and force the LL/LA to evict you, you have a far better chance of being housed by them. If this feels contrary to the way you were brought up, I know exactly how you feel. Unfortunately, good guys really do finish last these days.

    Just hang in there and here's to your getting council/HA accommodation one day.

    You made this happen. I'm proud of you.
    What is this life if, sweet wordsmith, we have no time to take the pith?
    Every stew starts with the first onion.
    I took it upon myself to investigate a trifle; it had custard, jelly, soggy sponge things...
    • JackJones456
    • By JackJones456 15th Mar 18, 5:05 PM
    • 31 Posts
    • 12 Thanks
    JackJones456
    Thanks Smodlet, I feel sooo relieved now that I have some breathing space before the next battle commences.

    Hi Quizzical, the AST on this forum was not emailed to me, I've typed it up from the contract that both myself and the landlady signed in the agents office.

    I understand what you are saying about people moving due to the start of the school year in September, but I am going to stick it out with the LA, now I've got this far I'm not going to give up.

    I'm sure I will be back on this thread sooner or later with an update. Thanks again to everyone who has taken the time to advise and contribute.
    • wesleyad
    • By wesleyad 16th Mar 18, 11:37 AM
    • 221 Posts
    • 174 Thanks
    wesleyad
    Thanks Smodlet, I feel sooo relieved now that I have some breathing space before the next battle commences.

    I understand what you are saying about people moving due to the start of the school year in September, but I am going to stick it out with the LA, now I've got this far I'm not going to give up.
    Originally posted by JackJones456
    I'm glad things have worked out so far, but you need to have a think about what happens next. You have won this battle, but come september you will be evicted. You have a great opportunity now to negotiate an excellent deal to leave the house early.

    I would think about going to the agent, suggesting as the owner is keen to sell you would love to be helpful and move early. You will start looking for places straight away and move as soon as a suitable one appears. In return all you ask is [whatever you deem appropriate, deposit returned early, a months rent to help transition, a glowing reference etc].

    It's up to you but I would think about what is going to happen in September. It will need to go through courts and likely eviction time is going to be bang on Xmas. If you get made homeless depending on your councils stock you may not get straight into a house, you may end up living in a B&B or similar and is the stress worth it?
    • JackJones456
    • By JackJones456 16th Mar 18, 5:01 PM
    • 31 Posts
    • 12 Thanks
    JackJones456
    Thanks Wesleyad for that important piece of advice. I have thought about what you have said, the agent in the area has the monopoly on the housing market i.e. sales and lettings.

    I have to say the LA have indicated they will help keep my family in the area. At the moment I am having to top up rent 150 every month which is a lot of money.

    Apparently the LA do not put families in B&B's, but I may be temporarily housed, I am going to have a good think about the situation over the next few weeks and see what happens, I will come back on the forum and update you all.
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