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View Full Version : Evicting our tenant - Section 21, gas certificate etc



MrShed
12-12-2005, 18:29 PM
Apologies in advance to all the regulars - I realise that most of these questions are fairly standard, I just want to make 100% sure prior to acting.

My parents have a property which I assist in managing etc. The tenant has been there for years, but recently has totally lost contact, is behind in rent(minimal, as most is covered by HB) and will not allow the Corgi engineer in to carry out the gas safety certificate. He is well out of the fixed term, now on a weekly rent period periodic tenancy.

- Section 21. What is the notice period we need to give? I think it is 8 weeks but not entirely sure. Sounds petty, but does it make any difference what day of the week it is?(ie does it have to be on a day he paid the rent?). Really stupid question but once the notice expires which court do we have to contact? And what exactly is the format of the S21? Finally, we suspect he will not accept the recorded delivery. Would you suggest one copy recorded and one normal(with proof of postage)?

- Gas certificate. What would you advise as the best way to show "due care" and show every reasonable step has been taken to attempt to get the certificate done?

- The tenant has left a large pile of rubbish(headboards etc) in the front garden for at least the last week or two. Can we touch this stuff? Or not?

- We suspect the tenant has moved his children out of the property, but not told the council(he would receive less housing benefit). Should we tell the council? Will we be liable for the difference to be returned?

Thanks in advance guys, and again sorry for the same old questions! Just couldn't find that close answers on the search.

Energise
12-12-2005, 19:53 PM
Apologies in advance to all the regulars - I realise that most of these questions are fairly standard, I just want to make 100% sure prior to acting.

My parents have a property which I assist in managing etc. The tenant has been there for years, but recently has totally lost contact, is behind in rent(minimal, as most is covered by HB) and will not allow the Corgi engineer in to carry out the gas safety certificate. He is well out of the fixed term, now on a weekly rent period periodic tenancy.

- Section 21. What is the notice period we need to give? I think it is 8 weeks but not entirely sure. Sounds petty, but does it make any difference what day of the week it is?(ie does it have to be on a day he paid the rent?). Really stupid question but once the notice expires which court do we have to contact? And what exactly is the format of the S21? Finally, we suspect he will not accept the recorded delivery. Would you suggest one copy recorded and one normal(with proof of postage)?

8 Weeks

The day he pays the rent may not be the same as the rent period as the start of a rent period so you need to check the contract. You can issue it without including a date have a read here

http://www.propertylawuk.net/assuredshortholds21notices.html

- Gas certificate. What would you advise as the best way to show "due care" and show every reasonable step has been taken to attempt to get the certificate done?

Recorded delivery letter, and making contact with a Corgi engineer possibly!

And maybe from 2 different post offices.

- The tenant has left a large pile of rubbish(headboards etc) in the front garden for at least the last week or two. Can we touch this stuff? Or not?

I think you shouldnt

- We suspect the tenant has moved his children out of the property, but not told the council(he would receive less housing benefit). Should we tell the council? Will we be liable for the difference to be returned?


Thanks in advance guys, and again sorry for the same old questions! Just couldn't find that close answers on the search.

Regarding benefit hopefully DJB cab answer that.

MrShed
12-12-2005, 20:10 PM
Thank you energise, answered most of my questions there. Pretty much what I thought but just wanted confirmation!

davidjohnbutton
12-12-2005, 20:30 PM
If you KNOW that the tenant has increased or decreased his family members, or is working or some other material factor which it is reasonable for you to be aware of, then you have a duty to report it to the housing benefit office IF you are receiving direct payments of HB for that tenant.

If you merely SUSPECT - then there is no duty.

lawstudent
13-12-2005, 06:10 AM
The notice you give must be at least two calendar months (which could be a little more than eight weeks) and it must expire on the last day of a period (ie a day preceding the rent payment day). If he fails to comply, enforcement will be through the local county court. Look up "courts" in the phone directory and ask the court office for details.

As for the rubbish piled in the garden why not report it to the Council as a fire/health hazard? Good luck.

MrShed
13-12-2005, 07:39 AM
lawstudent are you sure? Thought that was the notice period for monthly payment, not weekly?

Thanks for all the replies, much appreciated. Am I right in thinking that as long as the correct information is supplied in the Section 21, it doesn't matter how the information is put etc? Or is there certain "language" I should be using?

caroline7758
13-12-2005, 09:04 AM
For a section 21 notice it has to be 2 months- if you get it wrong, the court could find against you for an invalid notice.

Energise
13-12-2005, 09:40 AM
lawstudent are you sure? Thought that was the notice period for monthly payment, not weekly?

I just had a look at Section 21 and it says 2 months I think we were both thinking about rent arrears :eek:

lawstudent
13-12-2005, 09:57 AM
lawstudent are you sure? Thought that was the notice period for monthly payment, not weekly?

Thanks for all the replies, much appreciated. Am I right in thinking that as long as the correct information is supplied in the Section 21, it doesn't matter how the information is put etc? Or is there certain "language" I should be using?There is no prescribed form for S21 notices - just make sure your language is clear and unambiguous. You might try one of the many forms you will find on the internet - but remember that just because somebody has published something doesn't mean it's any good!

MrShed
13-12-2005, 10:20 AM
Ah yes Energise....thanks :)

RichieP
13-12-2005, 19:16 PM
I've got a section 21 if you want it.

As for HB, you do have a duty to report it but, are you likely to get the shortfall paid up?

MrShed
13-12-2005, 22:05 PM
Richie I would very much appreciate that, thanks. Think you still have my email from when I sent you that eBook?

And no we are VERY unlikely to receive the difference. Our issue is we are now 95% sure they have moved out, but we don't know when, so we don't know when the council will backdate the HB to.

RichieP
14-12-2005, 07:50 AM
It's in the post ;)

MrShed
18-12-2005, 21:04 PM
OK two questions:

- If we were going to serve the Section 21 tomorrow, what dates would we put? 19th December 2005 and 19th February 2006 ? Presumably with a weekly tenancy you do not have to wait for a specific date, as long as the full 2 months notice is given? And do I need to take account of the time taken for the post to get through?

- Not something I had thought of prior to actually coming to issue one but...what is to prevent the tenant, on receipt of the S21, drafting up a new one with altered dates on it to make it seem invalid? In other words, how can you prove the exact information included on the S21 actually served to the tenant?

Energise
18-12-2005, 21:25 PM
If the rent due day is Friday, the notice expiry date would be the first Thursday after 2 months

According to Gary Webber the following is OK as well.

"to expire at the end of the period of the tenancy which will end after the expiry of two months from the service of the notice"