There may be a provision in your tenancy agreement that states he can enter on 24 or 48 hours notice. This is a useful provision for him because he can give you notice and if you do not object he can then rely on the provision to enter. If he enters against your permission (i.e. you object) the position is very different. He may be guilty inter alia of a breach of contract under common law, an offence under both the Protection Against Eviction Act and the protection from Harassment Act (the latter if he repeatedly enters against your permission). The OFT also advise that they would consider a term giving the landlord a right to enter without the tenants permission to be unfair under the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts - see below:
3.32 We would object to a provision giving the landlord an excessive right to enter the rented property. Under any kind of lease or tenancy, a landlord is required by common law to allow his tenants ‘exclusive possession’ and ‘quiet enjoyment’ of the premises during the tenancy. In other words, tenants must be free from unwarranted intrusion by anyone, including the landlord. Landlords are unfairly disregarding that basic obligation if they reserve a right to enter the property without giving reasonable notice or getting the tenant’s consent, except for good reason.
Therefore any such terms in tenancy agreements are very fragile. As above they have some value in that in signing the same you agree to such access (ie. in default of an express refusal) but the landlord cannot hold you to that if ultimately you do not wish to give access. If the landlord ignores your refusal of permission to enter the first thing you can do is change the locks and make a claim against the landlord of the cost of the same and report the matter to the local authority's housing officer who may consider prosecution if the landlord significantly breaches the above provisions. You should make a note of any times the landlord has unlawfully access the property against your wishes.
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