Landlord Legal Advice

The actions of a select unscrupulous few have led landlords to be villainised by the media and, in most cases, given them an unjustified reputation. While there is plenty of advice online for tenants renting from bad landlords, there is also a growing number of dishonest tenants looking to maximise their own gains from their landlord’s investment. Whether you are a commercial or residential landlord, Britton and Time can help if you find yourself embroiled in a landlord-tenant dispute.

What is a landlord dispute?

When signing a lease, landlords and tenants alike create a contract between them to mutually ensure that the properties they keep are free from hazards, meet safety requirements and are kept in good condition. As a landlord, should you fail to meet these criteria your tenant may complain, withhold rent or, in the worst-case scenario, bring a case against you. Equally, if for example a tenant allows the property to fall into a state of disrepair through negligence or sublets part of the property without your permission, you may wish to take legal action against them, or even to evict them. If any of these situations arise, you are engaged in a landlord dispute.

What types of landlord disputes are there?

There are many types of landlord dispute, the most common of which will typically involve residential leases between landlords and tenants and include:

  • Contractual disputes
  • Non-payment of rent
  • Legislative and safety disputes where you as a landlord have not met mandated requirements, such as Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) ratings
  • Nuisance tenants
  • Eviction and repossession

Note that in some residential lease disputes, you may not be able to recover the full rent arrears if the tenant simply does not have the total funds to give you.

  • Less common situations include:
  • Inheriting a property with a sitting tenant
  • Commercial property disputes including forfeiture and dilapidation
  • Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) issues
  • Dealing with squatters

If you don’t think your dispute falls under one of these categories, Britton and Time offers a fixed fee initial consultation for £108 inclusive of VAT either over the phone, or at our offices in Hove where we would be happy to discuss your case. Contact us today to arrange this.

When should I seek legal advice for a landlord dispute?

As with any case, getting good advice early on will help you to not only understand the situation in its entirety, but also your own rights as a landlord. It can also help you avoid wasting time and money and, crucially, give you peace of mind.

If you are facing, or are engaged in a landlord dispute, you should contact Britton and Time immediately for expert advice.

Alternatively, if you are thinking of becoming, or have just become a landlord, we would always recommend taking early measures to try to avoid finding yourself involved in a complicated landlord dispute in the first place.

Taking preventative measures

Renting out a property can be daunting whether you are a first-time landlord or serial property tycoon. Leasing your property through an estate agent can incur heavy costs in addition to the stress caused if the relationship with your tenant sours. In many situations, you can take steps early on to reduce both the risk and burden on yourself if anything goes wrong through getting good legal advice. We can help with the following tasks:

  • Creating an enforceable assured shorthold tenancy (AST) and tenancy agreement
  • Understanding your obligations with regards to houses in multiple occupation (HMOs)
  • Drafting break clauses, lease covenants and waiving your right to forfeit as a commercial landlord
  • Evicting a tenant

If a tenant is causing malicious damage to your property or otherwise breaking the terms of their lease, such as not paying rent, you may wish to evict them and re-take possession of your property. The process of eviction is complicated and understanding both your own rights, and those of your tenants are key to successfully repossessing your property.

Britton and Time offers specialist eviction advice to reduce the stress and minimise costs for landlords engaged in repossession matters.

Why choose Britton and Time as your landlord dispute solicitors?

We can help advise on whatever landlord dispute situation you have encountered. Whether you are in the midst of negotiations, unsure of what to do next or looking to avoid getting involved deeper, get in touch with us and we will listen to what you want to achieve and advise accordingly.

Our team has over 40 years of experience in dealing with landlord disputes and we will guide you through your entire matter.

How much will it cost?

We offer a fixed fee initial consultation for £108 inclusive of VAT to learn more from you about your particular case. Where possible, we will offer fixed fees so you always know how much your case will be. For more complicated cases, we will always offer estimates of cost so you will know what you can expect to pay, and the services you will receive.

Get in touch with us if you would like to discuss your matter in more detail. Unfortunately, we cannot currently accept Legal Aid cases.

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