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Tenant Arrears on the Way Up? What to Do?

Putting macro economics aside tenant arrears can be a worrying time for landlords and tenants. Aside the odd rogue, the vast majority don't want to be in that position.

LSL Property Services who own estate agency brands such as Reed Rains and Your Move have recently published a report on Tenant Arrears, Evictions and Buy To Let Mortgages more than three months in arrears. Their figures show:

  • Serious Tenant Arrears are Up
  •  The Number of Eviction Cases are Falling/Low
  •  That Buy To Let Mortgages in arrears are low

 Given one and two their report concludes landlords are absorbing the cost of arrears and generally landlords are getting into a stronger position financially as time passes.  It’s not a long report – worth a quick read.

LCL Tenant Arrears Tracker Jan 2016

Putting macro economics aside tenant arrears can be a worrying time for landlords and tenants.  Aside the odd rogue, the vast majority don’t want to be in that position. 

Practical Advice on Tenant Arrears

In terms of practical advice on arrears I would add a couple of points to that:

  1. If your tenant is just in arrears I would listen to them and give them advice about claiming housing benefit should their circumstances have changed. Communication is key.  Non communication is always very worrying. 
  2.  However whilst being supportive to a tenant in a difficult position I would start the eviction process at the point where they are two months behind and a Section 8 notice can be served under ground 8. Typically they are in two months arrears at that point. 
  3. In a lot of arrears cases landlords lose further rent if they don’t act promptly.  You hear horror stories of landlords not receiving 8 months or a years rent.  Avoid being a horror story. 
  4. Take Legal Advice on the Section 8. It would be embarrassing not to have served this correctly and without supporting documents.

If you ever want to talk about this difficult topic feel free to call us.  Happy to go over this in individual cases.

Next article I will talk about local evictions.  How risky is letting your property in Uxbridge?

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