Stephensons Solicitors LLP Publishes Top Tips for Recovering Outstanding Rent
North West based Stephensons Solicitors LLP offers advice for rent recovery via the firm’s official blog.
Louise Hebborn, of Stephensons Solicitors LLP, has published some helpful advice via the firm’s official blog explaining the keys to successful rent recovery by landlords.
The first of the associate solicitor’s top tips is research: explaining that landlords should always obtain a range of important information before even handing over the keys.
“What is the tenant’s work, what is the tenant’s previous rental history, how is the tenant paying the rent? Use a tenant reference agency. If tenants get into arrears of rent, this information will be useful. The importance of starting off on a good footing with tenants should not be overlooked” Hebborn explains.
The article goes on to explain that landlords should act as soon as the rent becomes overdue; a simple phone call could often suffice in creating a resolution. The tenant might have a simple problem which can be easily resolved. Either way, it is best to have as much information as possible.
Payments plans can offer tenants with a helpful way to pay back any arrears. By allowing the tenant to pay the arrears in instalments, landlords can find an amicable solution which does not create unnecessary stress or financial loss for either party.
Depending upon their circumstances, clients might also have become eligible for housing benefit payments which could contribute to their rent. When tenants are already receiving benefits, the local authority might be prepared to make payments directly to the landlord but this is contingent upon circumstances.
If it is apparent that the tenant cannot make the relevant payments, the landlord may need to contact the guarantor. Hebborn explains “Often either the guarantor will pay the arrears of rent, or put pressure on the tenant to do so.”
Once all of these steps have been completed, a landlord might decide to serve a notice, and should seek advice on the appropriate form of notice. This is crucial as this notice is the first stage of the eviction process. If the tenant’s deposit has not been correctly placed in a tenancy deposit scheme, the notice may not be valid.
Hebborn writes that “if a notice has expired and the tenant remains in the property then Court proceedings for possession of the property and judgment for the arrears of rent should be commenced.”
She goes on to warn that achieving payment of the judgement amount can be difficult, and explains that “Landlords should consider obtaining legal advice certainly before commencing Court proceedings.”
Stephensons is one of the largest solicitors in the northwest, with a client base that extends across the UK. The firm offers fixed fee services for landlords to recover rent arrears and pursue eviction proceedings.
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