View Full Version : When can non-paying tenant be removed forcibly?

09-04-2006, 09:56 AM
This is a post I found on a newsgroup, the answers provided were all contradictory, can anybody here provide an answer ?

A friend of mine finds himself in an unpleasant situation. Two or three
months ago, he rented out a couple of rooms in his house to a tenant
for a fixed period of 2 weeks. He got the money in advance for that
period of time, but since then the tenants have stayed in the property
(making sure that not all of them are out of the property at the same
time) and have not paid a penny in rent. The tenants are a family of
husband & wife and two children.

I am well aware that tenancy agreements are a complex area of law, with
the correct course of action depending on a detail in the contract, but
could someone answer the following questions, or point me to a good
source for answers:

- generally, under what circumstances can the tenants be ejected (using
reasonable force) without a court order?

- generally, how long would it take between applying for an order and
the eviction of the tenants, and can this be expedited? Assume that the
tenants will string it out to the last.

09-04-2006, 11:13 AM
They would appear to be lodgers not tenants and could be removed using reasonable force. I don't have a more authoritative source than the below I'm afraid as to the definition between tenant/lodger. (1.2) certainly gives a broader interpretation of a lodger than is usually suggested.


Paragraph 3 (1.2)

"If you grant a tenancy but are a "resident landlord", then the tenancy will not be an assured or shorthold tenancy. This rule generally applies to converted houses. So if your only or main home is a flat in a building which has been converted into flats and you then let another flat in that same building, the arrangement will not be an assured or shorthold tenancy. You do not need to share any accommodation with the occupier to be held to be a resident landlord. It is enough that you live in the same building."

09-04-2006, 15:26 PM
You should view lodgers as merely paying guests. When the owner decides that the invitation is at an end, then the lodgers must leave. No formal notice is required. It's up to the owner to decide the length of notice (if any is given at all!).

If the owner thinks the situation could get nasty - change the locks.

Be firm.

09-04-2006, 16:09 PM
if they had keys to their own room to which they have exclusive use 0 would they still be lodgers ? I am not so sure they would.


09-04-2006, 17:06 PM
Don't ever give bedroom keys to lodgers.

Have you read my thread entitled "CAB gave lodger dodgy advice"?

09-04-2006, 17:07 PM
if they had keys to their own room to which they have exclusive use 0 would they still be lodgers ? I am not so sure they would.


I don't believe so as they would still have only shared access to other facilities, they would need exclusive access to a complete dwelling.