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View Full Version : Urgent Help Required - 24hrs Eviction Notice



tomupton
01-05-2007, 00:34 AM
Hi guy's,

I am seriously hoping someone may be able to advise me on the situation we are currently in with our rented property.

Myself and a couple took up a letting agreement with a well know letting agent for a property last march (2006). The term was for 12 months. Initially we paid a very substantial deposit of £2500 and have been paying our rent of £825 Per month in full accordingly. The deposit was paid to the letting agent. We recently re-newed our tenancy agreement with the letting agent to stay in the property for a further 12 months. An additional fee was paid for this extension of £125.

This morning, i.e. at 11am i had a knock at the door from a lady from our local council who explained see was putting into place an "Notice of Eviction" dated for today 30th April 2007. At this point i was extremely shocked as this was the first i have heard about anything. I immediatly spoke to our letting agent who explained that it was not their problem.

The lady from our council extended the eviction for 24hrs and pretty much explained that we needed to leave the property by 11am, 1st May. At 11am a lock smith would be arriving to change the locks.

My concern is that firstly we have only been given 24hrs notice to leave the property, secondly after speaking to the letting agent, the letting agent has passed the initial deposit to the landlord when we first moved in.

The letting agent explained that we need to get in contact with the landlord, After doing some reasearch the landlords phone has been disconnected. He opperates a business that hasnt submitted its accounts for 2 yrs.

To complicate the matter, the couple who i live with, one of them has recently had a heart transplant and is on a high dose of medication.

Where do we stand legally here, we have no house to move into, by the sounds of things our deposit is not going to be returned.

If someone could advise me on the following that would be fantastic. bearing in mind we have to be evicted from the property by 11am tomorrow morning.

1) Is 24hrs a sufficent notice period for us to leave the property? If not do we have the rights to have this extended.
2) Where do we stand legally with regards to having our deposit returned. Can we speak to a solicitor and file a case against our letting agent?
3) Is there anyway we can track down our landlord and potentially have our monies returned?
4) Where do we stand with regards to our letting agent as we originally agreed the letting with them and they have been managing all of the admin on our behalf.
5) Our tenancy re-newall does this give us any rights?
6) Our letting agent explained today that they have not heard from the landlord since we moved into the property. Is this a reasonable timescale for a letting agent to be in contact with the landlord?
7) we have been paying our rent via standing order, is there anyway our bank can have those monies returned??

Your help would be much appreciated as we are in a very difficult situation here.

Kind Regards

Tom Upton

attilathelandlord
01-05-2007, 05:53 AM
No-one, but non-one can evict you in your case unless they have a court order.
A lady popping round from the council with a bit of paper won't do it. This would be an illegal eviction.

They are putting the frighteners on you.

Are you actually renting the property from a council tenant who doesn't own the property and is subletting? A council tenant is not allowed to do this.

Does the lady who came round actually work for the council?

I would contact the relevant person/department of the council tout bleedin suite stating:

a) You have a bona fide rental agreement and the only way to remove you legally is with a court order and you don't have to go anywhere until the bailiffs turn up (this process would have taken months and you would have received endless paperwork to alert you to the fact)

b) If any attempt is made to change the locks you will call the police who will instruct the locksmith (if still there) to change them back.

c) If you are out for any reason and you come back and the locks have been changed you have the legal remedy of "self help" ie as long as what you have told us is true about your tenancy then you have the right to break in and change the locks again.

You can find out who owns the property by paying £2 and going to the land registry on line. If the council is the freeholder it will say so and it will also state whether a lease has been granted (ie the tenant bought the flat).

d) Request the landlord's details from the agent. They are required to give you these.

Who holds the deposit, the landlord or the agent?

tomupton
01-05-2007, 06:03 AM
Hi,

Thanks for your prompt response.

Ok we were issued a "N54 - Notice of eviction" . With regards to the notice period we have been given is 24hrs a reasonable timescale? Can we appeal against this? Is this Notice of Eviction that same as a court order, or will we be presented that when the bailifs arrive at 11AM?

We have the contact details for the landlord, i.e. his address and telephone number but his telephone has been cut off and he lives about 50 miles away.

Kind regards

And thanks for your help!

Regards

Tom

red40
01-05-2007, 06:20 AM
N54 notice of eviction is a legal court document, so it would appear that its already been to court. The council wont have anything to do with this. Are you sure the person that turned up wasn't a bailiff, did you ask for ID, etc?

tomupton
01-05-2007, 06:22 AM
To be fair she did show me a badge. I must appologise for being so vague it all came as a bit of a shock yesterday.

Where do we stand with regards to extending the eviction?

Regards

Tom

Bel
01-05-2007, 06:57 AM
Read this and contact Shelter

http://england.shelter.org.uk/advice/advice-4143.cfm

attilathelandlord
01-05-2007, 07:15 AM
Yes N54 is letter from the bailiff.

Was it in your name or the name of the landlord.

If in your name you may be able to get a temporary stay of execution.

If in another name the bailiffs will remove all persons from the property regardless of your tenancy agreement. You cannot extend your time at the property.

I wonder if the property is being repossessed.

Sounds like you've been forked over. You cannot stop the eviction. Get on to Shelter and the council to get rehomed.

tomupton
01-05-2007, 07:30 AM
Hi,

Thanks once again for your reply.

Correct the E54 is in the landlords name and the Occupiers. I am speaking to Shelter as i am typing this message, fingers crossed they are going help.

Regards

Tom

attilathelandlord
01-05-2007, 07:33 AM
That's why you haven't heard anything up till now.

If the landlord is holding the deposit you will have to sue for the return of it.

If the agent is holding the deposit as stakeholder then you should be able to prevent the amount being passed over to the landlord.

It sounds like the landlord has defaulted on the mortgage.

Good luck, I hope you get all the help you need. Don't forget to contact the homeless dept at the council also.

lorenzo
01-05-2007, 08:10 AM
This is shocking!

There is something wrong with the law if someone can be evicted with effectively NO notice. WTF?

Sadly, I think this will become more common if the hosing markets goes into recession.

Scary.

Ericthelobster
01-05-2007, 08:13 AM
This is shocking!

There is something wrong with the law if someone can be evicted with effectively NO notice. WTF?

Absolutely. How can this happen? Shouldn't somebody at some stage of the legal process have contacted the occupier prior to 24 hrs pre-eviction? Makes no sense at all to me.

attilathelandlord
01-05-2007, 08:27 AM
It's rare but it does happen.

Effectively the occupier had 24 hours notice but who'd want to move that quickly? I certainly couldn't.

jeffrey
01-05-2007, 08:45 AM
It's rare but it does happen.

Effectively the occupier had 24 hours notice but who'd want to move that quickly? I certainly couldn't.

People in Kent had less notice last weekend.

lorenzo
01-05-2007, 09:35 AM
It's rare but it does happen.

Effectively the occupier had 24 hours notice but who'd want to move that quickly? I certainly couldn't.
You couldn't even get movers in that time frame here, never mind accommodation.

lorenzo
01-05-2007, 09:36 AM
People in Kent had less notice last weekend.
Jefferey

I'm surprised you didn't pick up my typo above. You're slipping. ;)

jeffrey
01-05-2007, 09:42 AM
Jefferey

I'm surprised you didn't pick up my typo above. You're slipping. ;)

Which one? There's so many from which to select:
hosing [=housing]
markets goes [= markets go]
Jefferey [=Jeffrey].

lorenzo
01-05-2007, 10:19 AM
Which one? There's so many from which to select:
hosing [=housing]
markets goes [= markets go]
Jefferey [=Jeffrey].
Ahhh, that's better. :D

oaktree
01-05-2007, 15:42 PM
It certainly looks like the landlord has defaulted on his mortgage and the house is being repossessed. If so, I find it hard to believe that you've heard nothing or had no post from the Court, its common practise for the Courts to write to the landlord and occupier of a property subject to legal proceedings at the property address. Royal Mail won't redirect anything addressed to The Landlord or Occupier so it should have been delivered. The same goes for a council tenant who has illegally sub let his rented house.

Good luck with trying to get an extention.

tomupton
03-05-2007, 12:28 PM
Hi Guy's,

Thanks so much for all of your comments and concerns. Ok here is an update on our situation.

I am now staying with some friends who have kindly put us up for a few weeks. After doing hours of research i think i have identified that the Landlord did not tell the mortgage company that he was going to be doing a Buy-to-let which is why we have had such little notice.

After speaking to various people a letter was sent to the property on the 10th April serving the eviction notice for the 30th April. This letter was sent in first class mail and was addressed to the landlord.

Could someone advise what they think i should do?

1) Should a letter of this serverity been sent via "recorded delivery"
2) Would you advise us to go to the press about this?

Putting it bluntly this has been one of the worst things that could ever happen to me. We have lost a substantial deposit of £2500, our cats have been put into a kennels and half of our stuff has been put into storage! about £200 worth of tropical fish have died. the list goes on really. Additionally with the added presure of trying to find a new place and going through reference checks, deposit payments etc! grrrrrr what a nightmare.

If anyone can suggest anything that may help us that would be fantastic!

Regards

Tom

attilathelandlord
03-05-2007, 18:52 PM
Court orders just come out via ordinary mail. Even if it had been recorded delivery you couldn't have signed for it. Many people think that if they don't sign for a recorded delivery letter then notice hasn't been served. It won't wash in this case.

Very, very rare that mortgage companies evict because property being let without their knowledge. How would they know for a start?

Much more likely that the landlord defaulted on mortgage.

There would have been heaps of letters to landlord regarding this, now whether that post went to his current address nor to your address I don't know.

You could go to the press, but what difference would it make? It's not like you can credit check landlords and you can't guarantee that things won't go pear shaped for a landlord later on anyway. It's much the same for landlords. We can only check details so far, after that it's on trust. The landlord is always taking the bigger risk anyway. I give a tenant a property worth £250,000 and he gives me £1300 deposit.

Did the bailiffs return or did you go under your own steam. Why aren't you suing the landlord for return of deposit. Did you check on Landregistry about who owned your flat and their address?

Hope things get better for you.