Evict a Tenant? Evicting Residential Tenants
There are a number of reasons why, as a landlord, you may feel it necessary to evict a tenant but it is essential that you take the proper legal advice to ensure that you are acting within the law.
At Clifford Johnston & Co. we understand how difficult and stressful these situations can be but our tenancy specialists have the expertise and experience to help relieve your worry and to ensure a successful outcome.
For friendly and professional advice that is tailored to your individual circumstances, contact us today and speak to one of our legal team.
On what grounds can I evict a tenant?
Making the decision to evict a tenant is not one to be made lightly and it is essential that you follow the correct legal process.
If the tenancy is outside the fixed term you may be able to seek possession under Section 21 of the Housing Act 1988 and you would not need to show that the tenant has done anything wrong.
If you cannot rely on Section 21 you will need to establish that there exists grounds for possession such as that:
- Your tenant hasn’t paid their rent.
- Your tenant is engaged in antisocial or nuisance behaviour.
- Your tenant has damaged the property.
- Your tenant has breached the tenancy agreement.
- There is a break clause in the tenancy agreement.
- The building is unsafe and in need of extensive repair work or demolition.
How can I evict a tenant?
There is a clear procedure that every landlord is required to follow in order to legally evict a tenant. If this is not adhered to you could find yourself unable to regain possession of your property and could even face prosecution yourself.
As a landlord you must:
- Serve your tenant with a written eviction notice (generally either a Section 8 or Section 21).
- Give your tenant a period of two months to vacate the property.
- Apply to the county court for a possession order, if your tenant remains in the property after this time.
- Apply to the court for a bailiff to evict the tenant, if they are still in the property following the court order.
- Never attempt to physically remove a tenant yourself.
The quickest and most cost-effective way of evicting a tenant is generally by using what is known as an ‘accelerated procedure”. This involves the landlord making an application to the court for a possession order once the Section 21 notice has been served and the two months’ notice period has passed. The judge can then make a possession order based on the paperwork provided, usually without the need for a court hearing. Our solicitors will advise on this to make everything as straightforward as possible.
Penalties for Wrongful Eviction
Following the correct legal procedures to evict your tenant can feel slow and frustrating but it is vital that you act within the law otherwise not only could you face criminal charges but you could also lose your possession claim and be ordered to pay your tenant’s legal costs.
Illegal actions to remove a tenant from a property include:
- Changing the locks
- Preventing access to some or all or the property
- Harassing the tenant
- Removing the tenant’s belongings from the property
- Physically removing the tenant from the property
How can our Landlord & Tenant Solicitors help?
As a landlord, disputes involving your tenants can be complicated and difficult to navigate. One simple mistake can prove costly so it is important that you instruct an experienced and effective team to act on your behalf. At Clifford Johnston & Co. our tenancy specialists have the skills and expertise that you should expect from your legal representation and we pride ourselves on our client-focused approach. You will be treated with sensitivity and understanding by our friendly team who will provide you with clear and balanced advice tailored to your specific situation to achieve the very best results.
We can offer legal advice and support on all areas of the eviction process including:
- Advice on the best route to take.
- Alternative solutions for dispute resolution where appropriate.
- Preparing paperwork.
- Ensuring that your possession notice is correctly drafted to meet with legal requirements.
- Robustly representing you in court, where required.
- Making sure all necessary legal procedures are correctly followed.
- Representing you where an illegal eviction has already occurred.
Get in touch
By choosing to work with us you will have an exceptional team fighting your corner and one that is renowned across the industry for providing the highest standards of legal representation.
For affordable and cost-effective legal advice across the Noth West, Contact our Landlord Solicitors in Manchester & Stockport at Clifford Johnston & Co. today.