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Housing Disrepair: Protection from Eviction.

by Jane Willacey

If you live in a rented property and your home is in a state of disrepair, it may be that your landlord would rather evict you than pay for the repairs to be completed.

In such cases, there are steps that you can take to prevent yourself from being evicted, but only if you are not in breach of the terms of your lease.

Improvement Notices

Landlords can normally evict their tenants once the initial term of a lease has expired without giving a reason. This is known as the Section 21 process. It comes from Section 21 of the Housing Act 1988. If you have complained about the condition of your property to your council the landlord could be barred from evicting you in this way. If the council serve an improvement notice on the landlord they are not allowed to use this type of eviction for six months. When the six month period runs from varies.

If you have complained about disrepair and receive an eviction notice it may not be too late. Reporting the matter to your council immediately is advisable. If they serve an improvement notice after the eviction notice it could be treated as applying retrospectively. It all depends on you being able to prove you complained of the disrepair before the eviction notice was served.

This only applies to Section 21 evictions. Evictions under Section 8 of the legislation are normally based upon the fault of the tenant. They usually require you to have breached the terms of the lease. The most common ground reason is that the tenant is in rent arrears of more than two months. In these cases the landlord is not barred from seeking an eviction if the council has served notice.

If your property is not in a state of disrepair, Shelter has general guidance for you to consider.

If you are suffering from disrepair, you should obtain specialist legal advice. MJV Solicitors in most cases can offer no win no fee assistance to clients suffering from housing disrepair. Call us today on 01253 858231 or e-mail and one of our team will call you back.