Huntingdon and Peterborough Landlords – Why did You Serve Your last S21?
On 15th April 2019, the Government announced that it was abolishing Section 21, the so-called ‘no fault’ eviction notice in the private rented sector. As Landlords, we must campaign vigorously to prevent that.
The whole issue hinges on their interpretation of no fault.
ARLA chief executive David Cox commented at the time: “Today’s news could be devastating for the private rented sector and landlords operating within it.
“Until we have greater clarity on the changes planned for Section 8, today’s news will only increase pressure on the sector and discourage new landlords from investing in buy-to-let properties.”
At Opal Lettings, we have served S21’s over the past few years, and each and every one was served because of an untenable situation for all concerned caused by a tenant.
Let me give you two brief examples.
The first tenant was called Shane (name changed). Shane was an absolutely lovely guy, paid his rent on time, kept the house tidy, one of the most genuine guys you could hope to meet. Except at weekends, he used to drink heavily and take cocaine in the garden along with 3 or 4 of his mates who used to rock up and party hard with him. He shared one of our HMO’s with 4 other tenants. When they were “tanked up”, he and his mates were loud and abusive to the other tenants, threatening, and on one occasion he assaulted a housemate, for which he got arrested. They totally took over the kitchen and garden area, making it impossible for the other tenants to use the kitchen or garden. These wild parties frequently carried on into the early hours.
On one occasion, over an Easter weekend, he decided to have a massive party including a Barbecue in the garden. The neighbour informed us he decided to start a bonfire in the garden and cook his food that way. Many shrubs and a portion of the fence were burned. He had consistently broken S8 grounds 13,14 and 15, and we served him with a S21 as well as a S8, simply because it was the only way we could get him out within 8 weeks at minimum extra cost. The reason we needed him out within 8 weeks was simply, if he didn’t leave, the other tenants who were paying good money for the quiet enjoyment of their house, would have!
A few months after that, a lady called Clarissa (name changed) moved in to the same house. We offered Clarissa a room because a local respected prison chaplain that we knew – who had previously supplied us with excellent tenants – was helping her find accommodation because she was allegedly fleeing a violent husband from another part of the country.
She wasn’t there 2 weeks by the time I was hearing complaints from other tenants about her drinking in her room all day, playing loud music into the small hours and verbally abusing the other tenants if they dared tell her to turn her music down. They all had to get up to go to work in the mornings, unlike her. Like Shane, the Police were called a few times to disturbances, plus she assaulted another person in the house during one of her drunken rages. She also sent a series of abusive late night texts and emails to me, but I refused to have anything to do with her except when she was sober. When I spoke to her and described her previous nights behaviour to her, she would just shrug her shoulders and say nothing. She lasted 3 months in total, we served S8 and S21 after the first month (she wasn’t on a fixed contract) and for the last 2 months, she stopped paying rent. We were also forced to refund her deposit in full.
The Government are saying that Landlords would have to provide a “concrete, evidenced reason already specified in law” in order to end tenancies. Personally, I would like some of these wacky Government ministers to be forced to share a HMO with one of these troublemakers, to understand what it is really like for Landlords!