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TENANTS WONT PAY RENT AFTER DEATH OF LANDLORD; WONT GRANT ACCESS TO PROPERTY

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Author Topic: TENANTS WONT PAY RENT AFTER DEATH OF LANDLORD; WONT GRANT ACCESS TO PROPERTY  (Read 186 times)
Newbie
Posts: 3

I like property

« on: March 11, 2020, 12:00:14 PM »

Hello everyone,

My Father passed away 2 years ago, leaving an HMO rental property containing seven tenants.

 They have not paid a penny in rent since he died. I have been able to find no tenancy agreements or rent books among my Father's papers, as he collected their rent in cash or cheques.

The house now needs to be sold in order to pay the Death duties on the Estate.

I do not know the full names of the tenants. They refuse to communicate with me, and they will not let me have access to the property.

I want to serve them with Section 8 notices, on the grounds of non-payment of rent.

I was granted Probate over the estate in the high Court only recently, which is why they have been left there so long without paying anyone.

What action (s) would you all advise me to take first?

I've tried to be brief, so may have missed out vital details. I'm happy to fill in any blanks where I can. I fully expect initial letters to tenants to be ignored, and for this matter to end up in Court.

Any advice on what to do to ensure I follow the correct route to evict these people?


Many, many thanks for any clues you can provide.
Hero Member
Posts: 820

I like property

« Reply #1 on: March 13, 2020, 04:55:41 PM »

What an aggravation for you.It may well be that your father was breaking the law if he collected deposits and failed to protect them,and did not comply with the various regulations regarding HMO's.You really need to see a solicitor to make sure you do not leave yourself (or your father's estate) open to action,as you are now presumably the owner of the house.While they are still living there,even if not paying rent,the tenants could make claims.

In general I think the advice would be to issue S 21 to each tenant.You do not have to give reasons with this,so it gives them few loopholes to contest it. The fact that you need to sell should make it easier still.If you also want to pursue the owed rent I think that might be better done later through small claims.Realistically though,people living in bedsits are unlikely to have assets to make it worth suing them,and you would have to pay the costs upfront.You might want to do so in order to give then CCJ's of course,but I would let it go.
Newbie
Posts: 3

I like property

« Reply #2 on: March 13, 2020, 05:30:37 PM »

HeavyKarma,

Thank you for taking the time to read my post, and reply to it. Your kind words are most welcome, as is your insight and advice.

My first thought had been to serve them with Section 8 notices, using the ground of non-payment of rent. I managed to get some of their full names, but without tenancy agreements of any kind, I cannot fill in the part of Section 8 asking what the rent was, or from when it was due.

I had thought that my father's property would count as and HMO, so I would not be able to use Section 21. If I can in fact serve the tenants with Section 21 notices individually, I am happy to be patient with the 2 month process.

I simply had no idea which route was right for my situation. What does one do when there is no written tenancy agreement?

Finally, I think you are right about the collection of rent in cash without declaration. i'm grateful for your tact in addressing that aspect of things.  The truth is, I had no knowledge of anything untoward, and am happy to take my chances re: claims against the Estate.

Thanks again for your response. This process is just beginning for me.

Hero Member
Posts: 820

I like property

« Reply #3 on: March 14, 2020, 10:37:24 AM »

I forgot to say,you really do need to get inside the house.If you give at least 24 hours written notice,you can just go in.It is not up to them to refuse entry.They cannot forbid you from doing an inspection.If you dont have keys consult a locksmith.If there are no records at all,I am wondering if they have now become squatters? Things like gas safety checks are very important to avoid prosecution.The local library will have the latest electoral roll to see if they are on it,or you can go online.I don't envy you-Good luck!
Sr. Member
Posts: 332

I like property

« Reply #4 on: March 14, 2020, 04:50:20 PM »

Do not break into the house if the lock's been changed! While the LL have an implied right of access for inspection on notice, that goes against a tenant right to quiet enjoyment. If they tell you no, then don't try and enter. A changed lock should be interpreted as them saying no.

I would seriously suggest you instruct a lawyer.
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