Currently, if a tenant hasn’t paid the rent and leaves an assured shorthold tenancy (AST) before the end of its term, without agreeing a formal surrender with the landlord, the property may be said to have been abandoned.
Abandonment of property leaves landlords in a difficult position as the tenant has the right to resume the tenancy, so it is difficult for landlords to regain possession and re-let the property without detailed investigations as to why the tenant left and a court order. This can be time consuming and expensive.
The new Housing and Planning Act 2016 is coming into force on 12 May 2016 and with this new Act, landlords of properties in England will have the power to repossess the abandoned property in a much shorter timeframe.
Under the new Act, if the tenant has not paid the rent, landlords can serve 3 warning notices and if the tenant, any named occupier or person who paid the deposit does not respond by the date specified in the notice, the AST can be terminated on the day of the notice.
The Tenant does have the right to apply to the court for their tenancy to be reinstated, but their application must be within six months of the day on which the notice was given. The court will reinstate the tenancy if the tenant can show good reason for not responding to the notices.
The new Act will give landlords a route of repossession without costly court proceedings and with the comfort of known timescales.
If you need help with a tenant, call our commercial property team now on 0117 926 4121 or make a free enquiry online.