Homeless help from the council: private tenants facing eviction

Dealing with your landlord

Many landlords and agents assume their tenants will leave by the end of a notice.

Let them know if you need to stay to avoid any misunderstanding.

Tell them that the council is helping you and that you cannot move out until you have somewhere to go. Remind them that your tenancy rights continue when the notice ends.

Continue to pay rent and only agree a move out date if you find somewhere to live. For example, if you sign a tenancy agreement for a new home.

Find out about your tenancy rights after a section 21 notice.

Your landlord can apply to court when the notice ends

Eviction from a private tenancy is a legal process. It can take several months.

You have a legal right to stay in your home throughout the process. Your tenancy continues until you end it voluntarily or are evicted by bailiffs.

Find out more about the:

If your landlord pressures you to leave

Pressure to leave without following the legal eviction process is harassment. Kicking you out or locking you out is an illegal eviction.

Harassment and illegal eviction are criminal offences.

Find out how to deal with harassment from landlords or agents.

Contact your housing officer if your landlord or anyone acting on their behalf tries to force you out. The council must arrange emergency housing if you're unsafe or on the streets, and in priority need.

If your landlord suggests a tenancy surrender

Some landlords suggest a tenancy surrender as an alternative to eviction through the courts.

A tenancy surrender is when you and the landlord agree to end the tenancy and you leave by the agreed date.

Tenants often have to repay the landlord for some of the costs of eviction. This will be around £485 if you're evicted by bailiffs and could be more if there's a hearing.

Although a tenancy surrender can save you the court costs it is unlikely to be a good option until you have found somewhere else to live.

Do not sign anything that could end your right to live in your home.

If you do sign something but need to stay beyond the date in the document, your tenancy will not end unless you have signed a legal notice to quit or deed of surrender.

If your landlord offers you money to leave

Some landlords offer money to leave or say they will write off rent arrears if you agree to go.

This may feel tempting but it is only likely to be a good option if you have somewhere settled to move to. Only accept money to move out if it will help you get somewhere else to live.

Make sure you have the money or a written agreement to write off arrears before you hand back your keys.

Moving in with family or friends

Check how long you can stay there before you give up your tenancy.

The council could decide you're intentionally homeless if you give up your tenancy voluntarily and then need homeless help later on.

Discuss your options with your housing officer if you feel you cannot stay in your home during the eviction process.

The council could decide you're intentionally homeless if you give up your tenancy early when it's reasonable to stay in your home.

Find out how to avoid being found intentionally homeless.

Last updated: 22 November 2021

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