If you are ever unlucky enough to find yourself in this position, below are a few things you can do which may help you avoid getting evicted.
First off, it is highly recommended that you talk to a professional housing advisor immediately if your landlord has issued you a notice asking you to leave. Once you have explained your situation, the advisor may be able to give you options on how to delay or completely prevent eviction so that you may stay in your home.
Three steps to Eviction
There are 3 steps your landlord must follow in order to get an eviction.
- Written notice – Your landlord must leave you a written notice. This is usually a ‘Section 21’ notice which gives you 2 months before having to leave.
- Court – Your landlord must take you to court and get an order for you to leave.
- Get bailiffs in – Only bailiffs can evict you and in order to do so, they must have a valid warrant issued by the court.
Reasons why you could be evicted
Landlords can evict tenants for a number of different reasons. We have listed some of the more common reasons below.
Eviction because of rent arrears – Paying rent on time should be a tenants top priority. If rent is not paid on time, tenants run the risk of getting evicted. If you find yourself falling behind on arrears you should contact your landlord immediately and explain your situation as you may be able to come to some kind of payment plan with your landlord to pay off your arrears over time.
Eviction by section 21 – A private landlord does not need a legal reason to evict you from an assured tenancy agreement. As long as they serve you with a valid section 21 notice they can then take you to court, obtain a possession order and then get in bailiffs to evict you from their property.
However, there are ways to challenge section 21 for example, if your landlord has failed to protect your tenancy agreement or the notice contains incorrect information.
Eviction because of anti-social behavior – If you’ve agreed that your behaviour has caused problems your first step should be to have a sit down with your landlord and try to persuade him that these problems won’t continue. If your landlord still takes you to court you’ll have to persuade the judge that your behaviour will improve.
Eviction for causing property damage – – If you’ve caused damage to the property or simply are not keeping it clean your landlord may decide to take action against you.
If you find yourself in this position, offer to pay or do some repairs yourself (if you are able too). This may sway your landlord back onto your side which will allow you to stay in your property.
Eviction because your landlord thinks you have moved out – If you’ve been away for a while and forgot to inform your landlord, he may want to evict you if they think you are not living in the home anymore. If this is the case for you, contact your landlord and explain to them that you have just been away for a while but still want to live in the home.
If you are given a possession order stating you have to leave there is a chance for you to stay in your home but you will have to go to court and prove your case – this may cancel or change the possession order.
If all else fails?
Just to be on the safe side you should always have a back up plan. Actively look for a place to stay while you are dealing with your landlord. Whether that be with friends, family or even a new home is entirely up to you.