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Letting Agent / Tennant arrears


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Hello all

I have a one off flat that has been let through a Letting Agent for many years. The Tennant has built up arrears over the last year and looks like doing a 'moonlight' from the flat. The letting agent suggesting I get legal advice, but my take on it is that The Agent is my rent collector and they should be pursuing any arrears, through their legal channels.

Any advice  gratefully accepted,

bests

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Hi

 

You need to have a good read of the Contract you signed for the services of this Letting Agent and also to check what Bodies they are Registered with. (who are the Letting Agents?)

 

How much are the Rent Arrears to date and what actions has the Letting Agent taken to recover these Arrears from the Tenant? (i.e. what letters/discussions have they had with Tenant to pay off Arrears/Payment Plan)

 

What type of Tenancy Agreement do they have and when did is start?

 

Does the Tenant have a paid Deposit in a Tenancy Deposit Scheme?

 

What you need to bear in mind is the Letting Agent is exactly that and must act on the instruction of you the Landlord as legally the buck does not stop with the Letting Agent but you the Landlord as they are following your instructions.

 

You need to have a good discussion with your Letting Agent as to how you wish them to proceed with recovery action for the Rent Arrears and make sure it is also put in writing as you need to keep a paper trail of all this

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I cannot give any advice by PM - If you provide a link to your Thread then I will be happy to offer advice there.

I advise to the best of my ability, but I am not a qualified professional, benefits lawyer nor Welfare Rights Adviser.

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Hi Stu007.

thanks for your reply, and in answer; the Letting Agents are W H Brown and the arrears stand at approx £7000.00. to date.

The Tennat has been in property since Sept. 2018.

 

WHB have tried numerous times to contact the Tennant without success. (letters, phone calls ,messages all unanswered) They issued a section 21 notice which expired Sept. 5th The Tennant is now squatting.

 

WHB did make contact after the Sept 5th deadline and talked to the Tennant briefly and told her that she could be evicted if dosn't pay, and should not be staying at the premises. 

 

I believe that the Tennant is receiving housing benefit and maybe other benefits and is probably paying all the utility bills, but not the rent.

 

WHB are not entering the property because they only send one person around and through the entry phone system they hear other voices and fear for their safety they say.

 

I now have contacted WHB and asked for a copy of the property management agreement in place, as I do not have it.

 

Apologies for the long storey, and I just considered that the Letting Agents would handle everything.

 

Any further comments on this situation would be gratefully accepted,

Bests

Boomer 

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Well, the agents aren't covering themselves in glory, are they?

 

Could you post up the other information stu007 asked for please? The relevant parts of your contract and the trade bodies the agents are in.

 

HB

Illegitimi non carborundum

 

 

 

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Hi Honeybee13

Whilst waiting for the property management agreement to come through I have found out that William H Brown are members of the following bodies; Sequence, Property Ombudsman, Arla protected, T,D.S. and Safe Agent.

I trust this helps.

bests

Boomer

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Hi

 

No need for an apology for long story as it gives use more information that is relevant to your issue.

 

So WHB issued the tenant with a section 21 which expired 5th Sept I assume on grounds of the Arrears and it expired with said Tenant still living in the property.

 

Has WHB discussed any of this with you and there reason for not taking this to court to repossess your property?

 

IMO you need to discuss with WHB your next course of action since the S21 was served and has now expired as you will need to go to Court to gain a Warrant for Repossession of your property to Evict the tenant (bear in mind there will be legal costs involved) and is Repossession is granted it does not mean that Tenant will actually leave and may play the long game where you may have to instruct Bailiffs to Evict them once you have the CCJ for Repossession (again there will be costs involved to instruct Bailiffs).

 

What will be the issue you will have is recouping all these costs from Rents Arrears/Court costs/legal fees/Bailiffs if that Tenant has no income so you need to also bear this in mind as sadly it does happen where a Landlord in a situation like yours may find it difficult to recoup these costs even with a CCJ against that Tenant if they have no income or means to pay.

 

Now what I do find strange is that you do not have a copy of the agreement that you entered into with WHB for their services to Rent your Property as this is a very important document in your dealing with WHB.

 

You are also correct as to the different member association they are registered with but what I would also advise is look up each member they are registered with as with each they have a Code of Conduct which WHB has to abide by and as you read them just think to yourself did WHB do that and if not note it down and which part of that members Code of Conduct.

 

WHB link: (go down the webpage and you will see the members they are registered with important under the ARLA you will see 'Click here for our Client Money Protection Certificate' I would advice clicking and downloading a copy of that certificate for your records. I would also advise asking WHB exactly what this Client Money Protection Certificate covers and for a copy of the actual document not just that certificate that you can download.

 

WWW.WILLIAMHBROWN.CO.UK

Landlords, we're award winning lettings agents and offer a tenant finding service, full property management and many other services when letting...

 

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I cannot give any advice by PM - If you provide a link to your Thread then I will be happy to offer advice there.

I advise to the best of my ability, but I am not a qualified professional, benefits lawyer nor Welfare Rights Adviser.

Please Donate button to the Consumer Action Group

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Just a thought but you have said you think the tenant is on housing benefit. Have you contacted the council. I ask as even tho they may not discuss any details you can inform them that if they are paying it then the tenant is not using it to pay the rent and as result you have not been paid for months and a section 21 has been served.

They may also allow a application for the benefit to be paid directly to them from you. 

 

Stu we have recently had a stop on all evictions and from what l know where l live the courts are back logged for everything. Evictions are taking a while to sort. Not knowing where the property is tho l can imagine that most courts are the same. 

 

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Please remember the only stupid question is the one you dont ask so dont worry about asking the stupid questions.

 

Essex girl in pc world looking 4 curtains 4 her pc,the assistant says u dont need curtains 4 a computer!!Essex girl says,''HELLOOO!! i,ve got WINDOWS!!'.

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The GodMother

 

Has made a good point in checking with the Council to see if said Tenant is being paid Housing Benefit (yes they may not tell you due to DPA).

 

If said Tenant has been getting Housing Benefit and not paying the rent the Council will want answers from said Tenant and they may and I only say may ask you the Landlord for a statement to the effect that they were not paying rent from date to date. 

 

The point on the stop on evictions has ended but yes there will be a massive backlog for the Courts

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I cannot give any advice by PM - If you provide a link to your Thread then I will be happy to offer advice there.

I advise to the best of my ability, but I am not a qualified professional, benefits lawyer nor Welfare Rights Adviser.

Please Donate button to the Consumer Action Group

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Yes they may not tell you but you can always make them aware the rent is not being paid. 

Also have you spoken to WHB about how they are being paid as they could ask for the council to pay the directly. 

 

OFT debt collection guidance

 

Please remember the only stupid question is the one you dont ask so dont worry about asking the stupid questions.

 

Essex girl in pc world looking 4 curtains 4 her pc,the assistant says u dont need curtains 4 a computer!!Essex girl says,''HELLOOO!! i,ve got WINDOWS!!'.

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If the tenant is claiming Universal Credit including Housing, you can apply online for Housing to be paid directly to you and also include a benefit deduction towards arrears.  However, be careful, as this could affect your ability to evict, if you applied for benefit deduction towards arrears.

 

I am thinking it could be UC as they moved into your property in 2018 and may then have had to claim UC, as a Council Housing Benefit was not possible.

 

See the following linked Government info. If you scroll down there is a way to find out if the tenant claims UC.

 

 

We could do with some help from you.

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