Dangers of not having a legally binding tenancy agreement.

too many tenant removals
Jul 26 2016

Dangers of not having a legally binding tenancy agreement.

Landlord left with £10,000 clean-up bill after tenants from hell
Landlord Nick Saunders let his buy to let property out to a young family and after only five months they had become the tenants from hell, leaving the house covered in in faeces and urine.
Now clearly this was a case of the tenant abusing their position and should have been dealt with far more swiftly than was the case. In addition, there should be a system in place that allows for the Devon landlord to recoup the costs of putting the house back into a state that would allow other tenants to move in. Rather than this family being allowed to move on and repeat the process.
There was evidence of dog faeces smeared across the carpet and piles of cigarette butts on the counter-tops. Can you imagine the smell inside this house?
It transpired that the tenants told landlord Nick Saunders they had one dog but it later emerged they had three.
What disgusts me is that this dispute took a year to be resolved not only for the landlord but two small children were living in this property in squalor.
We are not sure what form of references Mr Saunders took up but he was quoted as saying they seemed like ‘decent people’
However, it transpires that they failed repeatedly to pay the agreed £600 a month rent and Mr Saunders served the family with an eviction notice with one month’s notice to leave.
It later emerged the couple also did not have jobs as they had suggested which may indicate that the referencing process was not sufficiently robust.
Due to the tenants entering into a legal dispute they remained in the property for almost a year.

This unfortunate tenancy highlights why it is so important that landlords properly vet prospective tenants by carrying out background checks on the people they let homes to by referencing tenants, as this is when many potential problems can be identified and ultimately avoided.
Tenant referencing provides all the background information on prospective tenants, helping landlords and agents make an educated choice about who they let properties to and importantly their ability to pay the rent on time each month.
It would be interesting to know if these rogue tenants have now received social housing and are doing the same to yet another property.
What are your thoughts on the delays and possible lack of referencing?

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  • Alan jones

    At the end if the day it s the landlord that’s suffers even to the point you can lose your property to the banks,if you fall into not paying your mortgage you get your house repossed ,your out on the final day ,no section 21,courts etc,so it seems there are to sets of eviction process? I would like to see no pay in a month ,you can change locks or get a police order something along those lines,we have all lost thousands in lost rent and repairs ,I mean serious repairs,the law must change,as landlords once again our hands are tied by these fraudsters it’s like stealing from tescos ?you get your monthly groceries at the till you walk through without paying,same thing ,different jockey,but what gets me they still have sky ,nice clothes ,mobiles etc?ehats your views

    6th September 2016 at 12:25 pm
    • Nicholas Gordon

      I agree Alan. The eviction process takes far too long. There should be system that allows us to serve notice based on rent arrears during the first defaulting month.
      Most of the delay is with the courts. We commence proceedings the following day after the notices expire, and yet our hands are tied whilst we still wait 5 weeks for a hearing. The majority of landlords suffering rental arrears have BTL mortgages, and they rely heavily on the rental income to service the loan. These factors need to be taken into consideration when laws are made.

      7th September 2016 at 9:29 pm
  • Myra Blaik

    I recently sat in on our local magistrate Court hearings as I wanted to see how the eviction process went. It didn’t! Most were held over for another month. Another month of stress. Another month of unpaid rent. Another month of damage to the property. Yet the agents and landlords were definitely seen as the billions of the piece. Please – let someone somewhere listen to the other side of the story.

    6th September 2016 at 9:25 pm
    • Nicholas Gordon

      Myra, Many of the local courts recently closed doors and therefore combining 2 or 3 courts int one central location. Problem now is one location has to list hearings for evictions, divorce, small claims, repossessions, probate, crime and children disputes all under one roof.
      They simply cannot cope with the demand. Listings for possession hearings and small claims are taking twice as long and the knock on effect is the landlord suffers increasing rent arrears.
      That’s why our work ethos is to act quick for our clients upon instruction. Time is the essence.

      7th September 2016 at 9:40 pm
  • Myra Blaik

    Should of course be villains – not billions. Predictive texting – you make my day.

    6th September 2016 at 9:26 pm

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