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GaryBirmingham
07-11-2011, 11:15 AM
Hi

We are the owners of a property in the UK, which we rented out at the end of July 2011 via an agent on a 12-month Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement. We moved to Australia and had no intention of returning to the UK for at least the 12-month period, therefore took the option of not including a break lease clause.

However, our situation has changed dramatically and unexpectedly and we need to return to the UK three months earlier than the lease expiry, at the end of April 2012.

We have written to the tenants via the agent (obvious giving 6-months notice!) requesting an early vacation, but this looks unlilely to reach an amicable conclusion.

We may need to now look for an alternate and legal way to remove the tenants fromn the property.

The facts are: a) this is our only UK property and have nowhere else to live on our return, b) that we have a child who will need to be settled in a school, c) the tenants are three single people who could easily find accomodation elsewhere and d) we are giving 6-months notice.

Would anyone know of the route we can take to legally gain possession at end April 2012? Our agent rather unusefuly said that this has not happened to them before!

Thanks in advance

regards

Gary

jjlandlord
07-11-2011, 11:25 AM
Woudl anyone know of the route we can take to legally gain possession at end April 2012?


As your letting agent probably told you, your only legal option is to serve the tenant a so-called section 21 notice seeking possession to expire at the end of the lease (end of July 2012).
This will entitle you to start court proceedings to evict the tenant if he remains beyond the term, but the whole eviction procedure will probably take a couple of months.

There is no way for you to recover possession in April/May 2012 unless the tenant agrees.
Your only option is to negotiate with them: E.g. offer to pay some of all of their costs.

GaryBirmingham
07-11-2011, 11:51 AM
There is no way for you to recover possession in April/May 2012 unless the tenant agrees.


I am positive that I researched that somewhere in Section 21 there is a clause that if the property is your only ULK residence (which it is) and you are returning to the country (which we are) then there is a case for legally enforced repossession. As always happens, I cannot trace the text now I need it!

Can anyone please advise?

jjlandlord
07-11-2011, 12:05 PM
You probably mean ground 1 of section 8 of the Housing act 1988.

For this to be used you must have given notice no later that the beginning of the tenancy (e.g. within tenancy agreement) that you might use this ground to recover possession.
Then you need to serve the actual notice using the prescribed form.

PaulF
07-11-2011, 12:06 PM
What you are referring to is Ground 1 of the Housing Act 1988 under Section 8, which your agent should have served as a pre-Notice on your tenants when they were just applicants, otherwise you can't use it. This doesn't allow you to regain possession earlier than the end of the fixed term.

If your agent correctly serves a S.21 now then you might gain possession at the end of the fixed term. If your tenants don't move out upon expiry of the Notice you can use Ground 1 under S.8 which should be a quicker route, providing that is it was served before the tenancy began.

GaryBirmingham
07-11-2011, 12:20 PM
Thank you for your comments regarding Ground 1 of the Housing Act 1988 under Section 8.

I do not believe that this was served to my tenants on application. so, I do not think that this can be used.

So, if an S21 is served now with a vacation date of 3-months before the end of the agreement, does this have any legal standing?

jjlandlord
07-11-2011, 12:51 PM
So, if an S21 is served now with a vacation date of 3-months before the end of the agreement, does this have any legal standing?

No, it would render the notice invalid.

As said above, there is nothing you cannot do legally to require the tenant to vacate before the end of the term in July 2012.
Your only option is to come to an agreement.

jta
07-11-2011, 12:51 PM
It will allow you to apply to the court for possession after the agreement comes to an end, not before.

westminster
07-11-2011, 13:00 PM
Thank you for your comments regarding Ground 1 of the Housing Act 1988 under Section 8.

I do not believe that this was served to my tenants on application. so, I do not think that this can be used.

Read the tenancy contract, it ought to contain a clause about serving notice under various grounds of Schedule II Housing Act 1988.

Snorkerz
07-11-2011, 17:33 PM
If your tenants don't move out upon expiry of the Notice you can use Ground 1 under S.8 which should be a quicker route, providing that is it was served before the tenancy began.Paul, as s21 (accelerated) should only take around 4 weeks from application to judges order (presuming it sits in the box for a week and a bit) are you certain s8(g1) would be quicker? How quickly could a hearing be organised?

PaulF
07-11-2011, 19:07 PM
Paul, as s21 (accelerated) should only take around 4 weeks from application to judges order (presuming it sits in the box for a week and a bit) are you certain s8(g1) would be quicker? How quickly could a hearing be organised?No I'm not sure - it was a suggestion but you are probably right.