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eulets
31-03-2010, 08:24 AM
Can someone please give me some advice?
I have a property which I have been letting to tennants for 18 months now. They have been late with rent every month so I gave them 2 months notice under the section 21 which expires tomorrow - at the same time as the existing tenancy runs out. The council have advised them to stay put and told me to take them to court. Originally, a letting agency took the deposit and drew up the tenancy agreement as I had to go into hospital for 2 weeks when the tenancy started. The letting agency then put the deposit into my bank account which I assumed was a months rent. I didnt find out util this week that the deposit was not protected. I am now really worried that I will get fined for not protecting the deposit even though I genuinely didnt know this was the case. What is my best way to proceed? Can I protect it now as I have only just found out? I also assume that I cannot go to court to get the eviction order till I protect the deposit? One final question please, there is a rent guarantor, can they be held liable for court costs if I eventually go to court for the eviction order?

Snorkerz
31-03-2010, 08:49 AM
Hi, you can protect the deposit today at www.depositprotection.com - this will prevent any claims against you.

However the s21 you have served is invalid and so you will need to issue a replacement as soon as the deposit is protected AND the prescribed information given to the tenants.

Obviously you need to do this all today if the fixed term expires tommorrow - make sure the date seeking possession is shown as "AFTER 1st June 2010" (presuming the current tenancy agreement started on the 2nd of the month).

With regard to the guarantor:

Does the AST make the tenant liable for the costs?
If so, goes the deed of guarantee make the guarantor responsible for all the tenants liabilities, or only the rent?

eulets
31-03-2010, 08:55 AM
Hi Snokerz, many thanks for the quick reply. I will get the deposit protected this morning. The rent guarantor form is a standard one, which says it continues if the tenancy is extended and also they are liable for legal fees. I was just wondering if this was still the case if the tenancy has expired and I was going for the eviction? I presume that if I start again with new notice period, I can also give a section 8, 2 weeks notice as the rent has been late 18 times in 18 months?

Snorkerz
31-03-2010, 09:00 AM
Hi Snokerz, many thanks for the quick reply. I will get the deposit protected this morning. The rent guarantor form is a standard one, which says it continues if the tenancy is extended and also they are liable for legal fees. I was just wondering if this was still the case if the tenancy has expired and I was going for the eviction? I presume that if I start again with new notice period, I can also give a section 8, 2 weeks notice as the rent has been late 18 times in 18 months?

Section 8 will be quicker than s21 - BUT unless ground 8 applies it is not certain that you will get possession from the judge. http://www.statutelaw.gov.uk/content.aspx?LegType=All+Legislation&title=housing+act&Year=1988&searchEnacted=0&extentMatchOnly=0&confersPower=0&blanketAmendment=0&sortAlpha=0&TYPE=QS&PageNumber=1&NavFrom=0&parentActiveTextDocId=2128236&ActiveTextDocId=2128476&filesize=4438

You can commence a s8 claim online (google PCOL) and this is £50 cheaper than doing it on paper. A s21 has to be done on paper.

The tenancy hasn't expired - the AST may have gone past it's fixed term, but it is still valid as a Statutory Periodic Tenancy - on the face of it I can see no likely reason for the guarantor not to be liable - but then I haven't seen the paperwork.

westminster
31-03-2010, 09:27 AM
They have been late with rent every month so I gave them 2 months notice under the section 21 which expires tomorrow - at the same time as the existing tenancy runs out.
So, the last day of the fixed term is tomorrow?

If you protect the deposit today, you still have to give the tenant the prescribed information before you can serve a new, valid, s.21 notice. So I would do this by hand (i.e. deliver through the letterbox) with a witness present.

Template here
https://www.depositprotection.com/public/documentlibrary/agentinfo.aspx
(the tenant does not have to sign and return a copy in order for the information to have been deemed given - sorry if you know all of this already, but just in case).

Ideally, you want to serve the s.21 notice within the fixed term, i.e. before midnight tomorrow. I think, if you want to serve the s.21 today, that you'll need to put a time (as well as a date) on the prescribed info, and the s.21, in order to show that the info was given before the s.21.

E.g. prescribed info dated 31st March 2010, 11.00 a.m.; s.21 dated 31st March 2010, 11.02 a.m.

eulets
31-03-2010, 09:51 AM
Thanks to you both for the advice. I have now protected the deposit with the DPS and paid by debit card, which is currently awaiting clearance. Not sure how long this will take but hopefully if this comes through today, I can then print it off and take it to the tenants before serving the notice.

eulets
31-03-2010, 09:53 AM
Can I give the deposit summary to the tenants whilst it is awaiting clearance?