Nightmare Tenants, Slum Landlords

Nightmare Tenants, Slum Landlords.

Change to episode schedule as Channel 5 launches first of six-part series with Landlord Action

Tonight, Wednesday 24th June 2015 at 9pm, Channel 5 will air the first episode of ‘Nightmare Tenants, Slum Landlords’, a six-part series following us, Landlord Action, and council teams from across Britain, as we deal with the gritty side of the UK’s buy-to-let industry, exposing problematic tenants and dishonest landlords.

With 8 million people renting in the UK, the series is set to provide a shocking insight into some of the tactics used by both landlords and tenants. It will uncover horror stories of home-owners battling to take repossession of their homes from tenants who refuse to pay, and landlords exposed for the poor and unsanitary living conditions of their rental properties.

The first 60 minute episode was set to delve into the world of sub-letting but following the surprise arrest of one of the scammers, the episode has had to be delayed.

Now, the first episode will follow three separate stories, one of which we were involved with.  We will be shown helping a landlord recover possession of his father’s property after he passed away.

Mr Amit Patel’s father had had a tenant/lodger living with him for the last 5.5 years. Upon his death, it was left to Mr Patel to take possession of the property. Unfortunately there was no sign of a tenancy agreement. It came to Mr Patel’s attention that Rajan Shah, the tenant, had been under investigation for stealing from his father – money to the sum of £81,000, his passport as well as bank details.

When questioned how much rent he was paying, Mr Shah quoted £350 per month which Mr Patel knew to be well below the market rent. He also claimed to be paying in cash, but it was thought he had not paid rent in many years.

When asked to leave, he said he would legally require four weeks’ notice. Mr Patel duly wrote him a note giving notice and asking for the last month’s rent. Mr Shah then went on to change his number and after further investigation it emerged he had been fired from his job for theft.

This is when Mr Patel called upon our help. We served a letter of action and hoped the pressure regarding filming would be enough to encourage him to leave. In tonight’s episode, you will see the outcome of this case as we negotiated and obtained possession within just one week. Sadly, you will also see the state of the property on the departure of this unruly tenant.

We’ve been in this business for 15 years and this series could run and run if it were to uncover all the unsavoury behaviour which occurs in the buy-to-let industry. Hopefully the cases highlighted in ‘Nightmare Tenants, Slum Landlords’ will give a balanced view of the issues that can occur on both sides and remind landlords of the importance of thorough due diligence.

The series will run for six weeks, every Wednesday on Channel 5 at 9pm starting on 24th June 2015.

Precise Treatment Reduces Pain

Detail needs experts. Expert time is worth it when it saves you a costly mistake. Main objective: Get the property back. Best action: Very precise treatment.

Serving a notice is actually the most important part of the possession process.

It isn’t complicated but one tiny error can cause dreadful problems.

That’s why we say, don’t DIY and don’t use internet amateurs. It’s not worth it.

1. Compliance Errors
If the tenant doesn’t leave at Step1, the notice had better be valid. Because then it has to go to court. Any little error can get a case thrown out. And you have to start all over again.

2. Attempting Short-Cuts.
In an effort to be quick, some internet services aimed at landlords are using short-cuts around the process. But if the tenant doesn’t leave (50%) these practices can backfire at court and the case thrown out.

3. Trying to Save Pennies.
Internet services have mushroomed and landlords can expect to get what they pay for. To get the process done PROPERLY it takes a certain amount of time for an expert to look over a file and be accurate. Our fees cover that expert time.

Chasing courts for dates, arranging advocates and preparing court papers is time consuming. Especially if you’ve never done it before.

Some landlord and agents have served notices themselves. They believed they were saving a few pounds but it often ended up costing them more.

If you lose a claim, the court can order you to pay the tenant’s defence cost, which can run to hundreds or thousands of pounds.

Our in-house Solicitors are there to get your property back as fast as they can. And we protect landlords and agents from themselves.

As experts, we know that in the rush to get things done, errors can happen. And those errors can can come back later to mess up your case – and the whole process has to start again.

You can speed things up – give us accurate information quickly. Help us to help you.

There are services on the web who will prepare papers BUT they get you to pay the court-fee separately and get you to sign the court papers – so in fact they don’t represent you!

If your notice (at Step1) wasn’t drafted or served correctly you risk wasting your court fees and losing a whole lot of time because of a small error.

We won’t let your case anywhere near a court until we have checked every little detail. To make sure you don’t waste time or money, at Step-2 we first only charge part of the fee.

If your notice is fine, then you just pay the balance of the fee and we issue the claim. If there is a problem with your notice or paperwork, we will advise you what to do next.

Courts take the view that possession proceedings can make someone homeless. So they are very careful. If there’s any error in the notice, they throw the case out. It’s the process. Get it right or lose.

If the notice is invalid, you have to start all over again. The weeks or months you’ve waited are wasted. If there were rent arrears, there are now more.

If there weren’t rent arrears, they might now start. More fees. More lost rent. And still no possession. Tenants can be alerted to making a counter-claim.

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