It’s a situation that no landlord or property manager wants to have to deal with, but there will be times that you will need to evict tenants. There are many reasons why this situation might come about, but the most important thing is that you handle it correctly so that you respect the rights of the tenant in question and don’t leave yourself in a difficult legal position.
The following are some useful tips for landlords who find themselves in this situation.
Always Serve Notice
The first thing you should do when you decide to evict a tenant is service the proper possession notice. It is best to work with a legal expert when doing this, so you can define the reasons for the eviction and understand what you need to do to see it through. In the majority of cases you need to observe a notice period, which is important to remember if you are considering court proceedings.
One of the most common reasons for evicting tenants is that they have fallen into arrears with their rent. This is frustrating for landlords, for obvious reasons, but does not necessarily mean that you need to jump straight towards eviction. There are a number of potential alternatives out there, such as The Landlord Rent Arrears Action Plan. Explore these first and leave the eviction notice as a last resort in such cases.
You will also need to be able to prove that you have served the proper notice to your tenants, especially if you need to pursue court proceedings. Keep copies of every form that you send out and consider bringing an independent witness or legal professional along when you serve the notice if you believe that the tenant may deny having received it. This will ensure you are covered in all circumstances.
The Accelerated Procedure
The quickest and most cost-effective way to evict a tenant if to follow the ‘Accelerated Procedure’, which is based on a previously-served section-21 notice. This is a notice where you must give two months’ notice and which can’t expire before the tenants fixed term is over. While the accelerated procedure is usually quicker, you will still have to wait somewhere in the region of eight to twelve weeks before it can be obtained. However, it will usually result in judges making orders based on the paperwork that is presented to them, which can help you avoid a legal battle.
Always Follow Procedure
Regardless of your reasons for eviction, it is important to keep in mind that you will essentially be taking a home away from your tenant. This is traumatic for the tenant and it also means that judges will look for you to follow procedure to the letter to ensure it is handled correctly. Work with legal professionals and make sure you exhaust every alternative before serving any form of eviction notice.
If you would like help with any aspects of property management and want to work with a reliable lettings agency in London, contact the team at Hills Estate today to find out how we can help you.