Landlord and Tenant Disputes
Thomson Hayton Winkley act for both commercial and domestic Landlords, and tenants, in a wide range of disputes.
From disputes over rent and payments to knowing your legal obligations either as a landlord or as a tenant, we can provide sound legal advice to help resolve your situation quickly, which may involve mediation or in some cases going to Court.
If you are a residential tenant on a low income, you may be eligible for free, or low cost advice from the Charity Shelter.
If you are a residential landlord you can regain possession of your property by serving what is known as a section 21 Notice, giving the tenant at least two months notice to leave. If they do not leave, you can issue Court proceedings for possession. Alternatively, you can serve what is known as a section 8 notice if the tenant is in arrears of rent or otherwise in breach of the terms of the tenancy agreement. Again, Court proceedings can be issued if they do not leave when the notice expires. It is very important to get the notices correct, or they will not be valid. For that reason it is best to take advice before serving the notice. We would always want to see a copy of the tenancy agreement first.
If you are a commercial landlord you may have grounds to bring the lease to an end if the tenant is in breach of certain obligations. To enable us to advise you, we would need to see a copy of your lease and full details of the various breaches you allege. In some cases you may be able to take back the property without Court proceedings, but again you should take advice before considering this.
In most cases where the tenant is in arrears, the landlord will want to get the property back – see above. Alternatively you can take proceedings for rent arrears, whether separately or as part of the possession proceedings. However, you always need to bear in mind that if the tenant is in arrears, they may not have the means to clear the arrears and taking further action may mean that you end up throwing good money after bad. In some cases, the priority is to get the tenant out as soon as possible and cut your losses.
For commercial landlords, the situation may be different in that your lease may provide means for you to instruct a Bailiff to seize goods belonging to the tenant. However care must be taken that you do not prejudice your right to terminate the lease and advice should always be taken.
Residential tenants have rights under the Protection from Eviction Act 1977 and Housing Act 1988. Their landlord must also ensure that their Deposit is protected. If you are concerned about your landlord’s behaviour, contact us for further advice.
As a Residential Landlord you must ensure that you do not fall foul of your legal obligations, because action could be taken against you, and you may have difficulties recovering possession should you need to do so. Contact us for further advice is you are unsure of your obligations.