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Joshua
Joshua, Lawyer
Category: UK Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 24527
Experience:  LL.B (Hons), Higher Prof. Dip. Law & Practice
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We have had tenants living continuously in our property for

Customer Question

We have had tenants living continuously in our property for the past 5 years and are on a month by month AST Agreement.

We have now decided to sell the property - what are our rights please, as landlords, with regard to viewings and ultimately if we exchange (if they are still residing at the property).
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: UK Property Law
Expert:  Joshua replied 1 year ago.

Joshua :

Thanks for your question. Please kindly RATE my answer when you are satisfied

Joshua :

Have you asked the tenants if they will allow access for viewings please?

Customer:

No - we only had the estate agents go in last night. However, we do have a slight problem in that the ex husband (wife and children reside in the property) is the payer of the rent and is a lawyer himself - hence needing to know our rights as we had to take him to court (settled out of) last year with damage to the property.

Customer:

Prior to viewings though, the property needs to be brought back to reasonable condition - to which the wife will be paying for.

Joshua :

Thanks.

Joshua :

The position is that there is no right in law to insist on access for viewings. Even if there is a provision in the tenancy agreement giving you access for viewings the is no right to insist if the tenants refuse access.

Joshua :

Access for viewings is only legally possible with the tenants consent.

Joshua :

Because the tenancy is now a statutory periodic tenancy based on what you say you have the right to recover possession of the property and evict the tenants. You need give two clear months notice and that notice must expire the day before rent is payable and be in the form of a s21 notice.

Customer:

Given the hassle of last August (as partially described above), should we first initially asks their intentions (ie if viewings, of course within the reasonable notice period) or otherwise go straight to Section 21?

Customer:

I have a standard Section 21 Notice template - does this need to be addressed to the tenant or to her husband (rent payer)

Joshua :

Many tenants will allow reasonable access for viewings on request however if they will not the only way to deal with the problem if consent cannot be achieved is to give them notice to leave. This is frustrating because ideally you would not want a rent void whilst the property is being marketed.

Joshua :

If you are keen to avoid a rent void whilst marketing but have impossible tenants one approach would be to evict the current tenants and allow new ones in on a licence where you provide for short notice at one month. A licence requires you to either be resident or to supply regular services like cleaning or meals to the licencees.

Joshua :

The s21 notice must be addressed to the tenant or tenants named on the tenancy agreement. The specific notice requires is a s21 (4) (a) notice.

Customer:

Thanks. Her husband (lawyer) did advise us last year that 'we cannot force her out - even with a Section 21 Notice' is this correct? If so, what are our legal rights.

Joshua :

Who is named on the tenancy, just him or both of them?

Customer:

Both

Customer:

BUT

Customer:

The first year AST of 2009 expired in 2010 and since then, no further agreement has been signed.....

Customer:

Its a rolling AST I believe you call it

Joshua :

Thanks. So the notice must be addressed to both of them. Providing the notice is in the correct form as above and the dates are correct it will bind both of them. Now the fixed period of the tenancy has expired they no longer have security of tenure other then the right to two months notice. Subject as above the notice will bind both of them and they must leave.

Joshua :

Is there anything above I can clarify for you?

Customer:

Thanks - just one more. So, in essence, if we serve say tomorrow, then they MUST vacate by August 13?

Joshua :

What date each month is rent payable according to the tenancy?

Customer:

I think the end of the month

Joshua :

Thanks. You must remember that the only date the notice can lawfully expire is the day before rent is payable. To recap you need to give two clear months notice AND that notice can only expire the day before rent is payable. Therefore if rent is payable on the last day of the month the earliest date you could give for eviction is 30 August 2013 begin the earliest date complying with the above. If the date is wrong the notice is invalid and must be served again.

Joshua :

Does the above answer all your questions or is there anything I can clarify or help with any further?

Joshua :

If you have no further questions for now I should be very grateful if you would kindly take a moment to rate my service to you today. Your feedback is important to me. If there is anything else I can help with though please reply back to me though.

Customer:

Absolutely - many thanks indeed for all your help.

Joshua, Lawyer
Category: UK Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 24527
Experience: LL.B (Hons), Higher Prof. Dip. Law & Practice
Joshua and 2 other UK Property Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.


My apologies - I have just noticed on the Section 21 (4)(a) notice the following:


 


'Where an AST has become a periodic tenancy, a court must make an order for possession if the landlord has given a notice in writing'.


 


What does this mean - we have to get courts involved?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Relist: Other.
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Expert:  Joshua replied 1 year ago.
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