Residential possession claims

    Residential possession claims

    One of the most common agreements between a landlord and tenant is an assured shorthold tenancy agreement. This type of tenancy agreement permits a landlord to let their property to the tenant while keeping the right to repossess the property at the end of an agreed term.

    As a landlord, you might be wondering what your rights are when it comes to repossessing your property. Below we answer some of the more common questions that arise.

    If my tenant has an assured shorthold tenancy and I want them to leave, what can I do?

    If you want the tenant to leave, there are two options available.

    1. A section 21 notice can be used when you want the property back after an agreed term has come to an end.
    2. A section 8 notice will apply if the tenant is in breach of the terms of your tenancy agreement, either during the initial fixed term, or once the fixed term has ended.

    As a landlord, you can serve a section 8 notice and a section 21 notice simultaneously if the tenant is occupying your property after the expiry of a fixed term of the lease, and one or more of the grounds for possession set out in section 8 of the Housing Act 1988 can be made out.

    If I serve a section 21 notice, how much notice do I have to give the tenant?

    If you serve a section 21 notice, the tenant must be given at least two months’ notice to vacate, to expire on or after the expiry of the fixed term.

    If my tenant is in arrears of rent what notice period do I give them in my section 8 notice?

    If the tenant is in arrears of rent for the equivalent of at least two months’ rent, the notice period is two weeks.

    What type of notice would I serve on a tenant who had breached the terms of their tenancy?

    A section 8 notice is to be served when a tenant has breached the terms of your tenancy agreement, and you wish to secure possession.

    What should I do if my tenant doesn’t vacate the property after the section 21 notice period has expired?

    You should not evict the tenant without first obtaining an order from the court. A landlord can apply for a possession order using the accelerated possession procedure once the period given in the section 21 notice has expired, and if a tenant remains in occupation. This accelerated possession procedure route is only available if there is a written tenancy agreement.

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