Rent arrears remain on an upward trend

Published: 02/02/2013

The number of tenants in rent arrears of two months or more is now at its highest level since 2008, according to the Government statistics released earlier this year.

There are now 99,000 tenants in rent arrears, a 15 per increase compared to figures last year. Meanwhile the ongoing squeeze on income sees tenants in severe arrears account for 2.5 per cent of all tenancies in England and Wales.

As specialists in landlord law, GW LET has seen an increase in the number of landlords seeking advice on how to evict a tenant in arrears.

John Jones, one of the lawyers behind GW LET, explains the legal sensitivities associated with tenant eviction:

“It’s no surprise that more and more tenants are finding themselves in rent arrears; from the rising cost of living to unemployment, the whole nation continues to feel the firm financial pinch.

“However this also includes landlords whose own financial wellbeing is reliant on trustworthy tenants who can pay their rent on time each month. This upward trend is therefore a real worry.

Evicting a tenant in rent arrears is not as straightforward as many landlords presume; there seems to be a universal belief that if a tenant does not pay the rent then the landlord can simply take back the property. As unfair as this seem, this is not the case.

“To evict a tenant prior to the end of the fixed term of the tenancy, the landlord must serve a Section 8 Notice on their tenant. If the tenant still remains in the property, the landlord must then obtain an order for possession from the court.”

As leading experts in landlord law, including tenant eviction, GW LET can offer legal advice to any landlords with tenants in arrears and help minimise the financial impact of the situation.

Content correct at time of publication

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