If a property owner or letting agent needs to regain possession of a property, they should follow the government’s guidance which is to mediate with your tenant before going down the repossession route. The government also recommends making use of the new Housing Loss Prevention Advice Service which has recently been launched and provides advice to tenants about evictions.
The repossession action begins through either a ‘no fault’ section 21 or section 8 notice.
What does the procedure for taking possession of a property entail?
To regain possession of a property from a tenant, you must initiate the process by serving either a section 8 or section 21 notice, specifying the date by which you expect them to vacate the premises.
Should the tenant fail to vacate by the stipulated date, you have three options for applying for a possession order:
Following this, you will receive a hearing date and additional instructions. It is crucial to provide copies of the case documents to both the court and the tenant.
Subsequently, you will attend the possession hearing, during which the judge will determine the next steps. These may include:
If a possession order is granted, and the tenants do not vacate as specified, you can apply for a warrant of possession, which a bailiff will execute.
How can you resolve an issue without resorting to court action?
The government encourages landlords and agents to seek resolutions with tenants that circumvent the court process, given that court proceedings can incur costs ranging from £400 to £500, excluding legal fees. Government guidance outlines the following steps:
What is the Housing Loss Prevention Advice Service?
Tenants can now access free legal advice and representation throughout the possession process via the Housing Loss Prevention Advice Service, including representation at court hearings.
A housing expert will collaborate with the tenant to help them comprehend the reasons behind the eviction notice and suggest possible solutions.
This service’s availability will be mentioned in an updated version of the How to Rent guide starting from October 2023.
The information in this post is valid to the best of our knowledge on the date of posting. It is advised that you seek independent advice based on your individual circumstances.
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