Rent arrears are a major concern for many landlords in the UK. It can be a real headache to try and get someone to pay their rent on time, and when they do not, it can seriously damage your relationship with your tenant. Additionally, if you are a landlord with multiple properties and you are struggling to get tenants to pay their rent, it can be very stressful and difficult to manage. This is where most landlords resort to serving a Section 8 or 21 notice to their tenants.
Since the government is planning on scrapping Section 21 notices, you will need to learn about Section 8 notice, which is more restrictive than Section 21 and can only be used in very specific circumstances.
What is a Section 8 Notice?
A Section 8 notice is a written notice that a landlord can serve to a tenant if they fail to meet their legal obligations. This notice can be served in England and Wales at any time during the tenancy agreement and can be used by the landlord to end the tenancy agreement early if the tenant is not meeting their obligations.
The Section 8 notice was introduced under the Housing Act of 1988. One of the most common situations, when landlords serve a Section 8 notice, is the tenant failing to pay the rent or being behind with their rent payments.
Process for Serving the Notice
The process for serving a Section 8 notice is the same as the process of serving any other eviction notice. Before you serve them with the official notice, make sure to contact the tenant first and try and reach an amicable solution with them so that they can pay the outstanding rent in full. If the rent arrears are relatively small (for example, they are a week overdue), it may be possible to reach a compromise with the tenant to settle the debt without having to serve the notice.
However, if the tenant is not responding to you and the arrears are very large, the next step is to send a written reminder and give them a few days before you serve them with a legal notice.
If the rent arrears are more than two months late, excluding the current month, you can proceed to serve them with the notice, which will ask them to either pay the rent in full or leave the property. You are entitled to get a court order if the tenant doesn’t vacate the property after you have been served with the notice. Make sure to also keep a record of your conversations with the tenant so that you have proof in case you need to use it in court later on.
Work With Residential Eviction Specialists
Hiring landlord eviction services can help you save money, time and stress while dealing with tenant disputes. At Landlord Assist, we offer tenant eviction, tenant tracing, and rent arrears collection services!
Contact us to learn more about us and what we can do for you!