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  • Problem Tenants

    When can I serve a S21?

    I am preparing to inherit a property at the end of June with a non paying tenant. When can I serve a S21 notice? What can I claim on a court order for unpaid rent?

    The property has been held in trust for the past 4 years and tenanted for the past 3. The trustees have appointed a Letting Agent. The tenant stopped paying in May 2017. The Letting Agent issued a S21 notice in November 2017 when I was made aware of the non payment. This S21 is about to expire. The trustees have not authorised it. The LA has also prepared a money order for the outstanding rent. I believe this can not be processed until the S21 has been authorised.

    I will receive the deeds at the end of June. I am happy to continue with the same LA who I have also chosen to sell the property as soon as it is vacant.

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    A good teacher must know the rules; a good pupil, the exceptions.

    Martin H. Fischer

    Latest ministry of justice statistics are that there isn't much difference in time from commencement of proceedings to possession for accelerated vs normal procedure.

    So you might want to consider s8 route if arrears are large enough, since court will make order for arrears in addition to possession - without having to start another set of proceedings for debt recovery.

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    DISCLAIMER just my personal opinion - for legal advice consult a qualified professional grown-up.

    What will the arrears be when the deeds are transferred into my name? Will it be the 14 months since the rent was last paid or will it start afresh from the date the deeds change?

    I'm presuming I will need to at least sign a contract with the LA as they have been appointed by the trustees. Does this also create a new tenancy agreement and how does this effect any rent arrears?

    My priority is to sell the property for which I will need vacant possession. If I can reclaim the rent arrears that will be a bonus.

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    A good teacher must know the rules; a good pupil, the exceptions.

    Martin H. Fischer

    Hi Gary,

    It is hard to give advice as there is not really enough information.  We would really need to see the S21 notice to advise you.

    Please feel free to contact Landlord Action on  0333 321 9415 and we will be happy to assist you.

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    Founder of Landlord Action and Brand Ambassador for Hamilton Fraser

    Thanks Paul,

    Unfortunately the number you have provided does not connect. I have contacted your team on 0333 363 8745 and am awaiting a call back.

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    A good teacher must know the rules; a good pupil, the exceptions.

    Martin H. Fischer

    The trustees should be dealing with this now. Arguably they are not discharging their duty by allowing this level of arrears to accrue. You can deal with things once the property is registered in your name at the Land Registry. You will inherit the arrears and the case law suggests you can inherit the notice too.

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    David Smith
    Landlord & Tenant Solicitor
    Anthony Gold Solicitors

    Find me on LinkedIn: uk.linkedin.com/in/dsnsmith

    All opinions are my own and do not reflect those of my firm. No comment made should be taken as legal advice and you should consult a solicitor or other legal professional for advice on your specific situation.

    Thank you David,

    For reasons known only to themselves the trustees are extremely slow to respond to either myself or the LA. I can only hope that they process the change at Land Registry in a timely manner and then the necessary action can be taken.

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    A good teacher must know the rules; a good pupil, the exceptions.

    Martin H. Fischer