At Benchmark Solicitors London we offer a range of fixed fee tenant eviction actions in London for undefended court proceedings.
Please note that as a result of the Coronavirus Act 2020 and recent court decisions, the notice periods for service of section 21 and section 8 notices, the time limits for issuing proceedings and some of the other requirements which must be complied with prior to service of notices have been varied. The information on this page has not been updated to provide for each and every change to the eviction process brought about by these developments.
The new notice periods, time limits, and other requirements currently in force are extremely complex and depend upon a number of variables including the date of the tenancy agreement and the date of service of any existing notice. We strongly recommend seeking specific advice from us as to the appropriate notice periods, time limits and other requirements before taking any action.
What can we offer you in terms of tenant eviction?
At Benchmark Solicitors London we offer the following fixed fees (excluding court fees) for each stage of tenant eviction process in London. Please note that the below does not apply to squatters or trespassers as they are not tenants, please see our squatters or trespassers page if you wish to evict these occupiers from your property or land.
At Benchmark Solicitors London we offer the following fixed fees (inclusive of vat and court fees) for each stage of tenant eviction up to and including the first and hopefully only court hearing. Accordingly, as long as the claim is determined the first time it goes before a judge (and most claims are) then the fees you see below will be the fees you pay. Please note that the below does not apply to squatters or trespassers as they are not tenants, please see our squatters or trespassers page if you wish to evict these occupiers from your property or land.
- Stage 1 – Case review, £180
Whether you are evicting a tenant or tenants due to the expiry of the tenancy (under section 21) or due to rent arrears or other breach of tenancy (under section 8) you will need to initially consider and decide what route you wish or indeed can take. This decision will involve careful consideration of your situation and your paperwork. We are happy to meet with you at our offices to do this or alternatively the case can be reviewed from the paperwork you provide and after speaking with you. For case review – £180 inclusive of vat.
- Stage 2 – Service of notice, £120
Once we have considered your case and you have decided how you wish to proceed you will then serve the relevant notice. For service of the notice – £120 inclusive of vat.
- Stage 3 – Court Proceedings, £900
Should your tenants fail to comply with the requirements of your notice you must bring your claim to Court to obtain an order for possession against your tenants. The cost of this stage includes any attendance necessary for the first, and hopefully only, consideration of the claim by a judge. For issue and progression of the claim up to the first consideration by the judge – £900 including vat and court fees:
- If the claim is based upon rent arrears or some other breach of the tenancy then the above quote is only offered in relation to rental properties located in the following postcodes; BR1; E; EC; EN; HA; IG; N; NW; RM; SE1-SE18; SE28; SW1-SW12; W; WC
- Stage 4 – Eviction, £200
Although the Court would have made an order for possession the tenancy continues until it has been lawfully brought to an end by you via the execution of a valid warrant or writ of possession. To apply for a warrant of possession and organisation of the county court bailiffs and eviction day – £200 inclusive of vat and court fees (based upon you or your agent attending the eviction and excluding the costs of any locksmiths).
To book your appointment please use our online enquiry form.
To arrange a meeting please contact us.
What if my tenant defends the landlord’s claim for eviction?
The case will become contested and often a tenant may file a counterclaim. At this stage our fixed fee agreement would fall away and we will charge you for time spent.
What if my tenant does not leave on the date given for the eviction?
We would need to make an application to the court for a bailiff appointment, and once we are notified of the date, arrange for a locksmith to attend the property. We will charge you for time spent and court fees.
What are section 21 and section 8 actions?
Section 21 actions – Repossession on Expiry of a Tenancy
Section 21 refers to section 21 of the Housing Act 1988.
To those who are not familiar with it, it codifies the landlord’s right to bring an assured shorthold tenancy to an end upon expiry of the term of the tenancy by giving not less than two months notice in writing. This is the most frequently used method of evicting tenants.
What kind of notice must I serve to evict my tenant?
The notice served is unsurprisingly called a section 21 notice. It must be in writing and there are a number of other requirements as to what must be contained within in and when it must be served. When the notice must be served is dependent upon whether it is served before the end of the initial term or not.
What if I have served the notice to evict the tenant and it is not in the form required?
We will need to serve a new notice to avoid non-compliance.
When will the court give possession?
The court will give a possession order if it is satisfied that the provisions of section 21 have been met, i.e. when it is satisfied that the tenancy is at an end, and the appropriate notice has been given.
Section 8 – Repossession for Other Reasons
Section 8 refers to section 8 of the Housing Act 1988.
To those who are not familiar with it, it codifies the landlord’s right to bring an assured tenancy (which will include most assured shortholds) to an end for reasons other than the term being at an end, or in addition.
What reasons are the acceptable reasons which would allow a landlord to bring the tenancy to an end and evict their tenant?
Schedule 2 of the Housing Act 1988 sets out the grounds upon which a landlord may seek to recover possession of a property. There are 17 grounds in all both discretionary (9 – 17) and mandatory grounds (1-8) which allow such an action to proceed.
What is the most common ground used to evict tenants under section 8?
The most common ground to use is ground 8, which if established must give rise to a possession order. Ground 8 relates to rent arrears and allows you to recover possession of the property when the tenant has not paid the rent. There are some discretionary grounds which would also be used for non payment of rent as well.
How can it be done in practice?
You must serve a notice on the tenant in a prescribed form and meet the requirements of ground 8 before the court will give possession. Most tenancies require rent to be paid monthly. To satisfy ground 8 when you serve the notice and when it comes to court there must be at least two months rent outstanding and the position is the same if rent is payable weekly. Quarterly and annual rents require a quarter/three months rent in arrears for a period of three months or more.
So can I do it myself?
Section 21 and section 8 of the Housing Act 1988 contain complex provisions about the requirements to be met in order for a possession order to be granted. You must get an order if you wish to evict a residential tenant. If you miss out a step you may cause unnecessary delays, preclude yourself from bringing the claim or spend time and cost that you hadn’t anticipated. We would thoroughly recommend taking legal advice, so that you get your desired result first time.
For more information on our full range of property services please visit our property repossessions page. For further information on our full range of landlord and tenant services please see our landlord and tenant page.