If you are a residential landlord who needs legal services related to your role, the expert landlord solicitors at Percy Hughes & Roberts Solicitors can help. We offer a range of services that can help landlords meet their legal obligations, resolve disputes, prepare legally sound tenancy agreements, and regain possession of their property from problem tenants.
Our team, based in Birkenhead, has delivered the highest quality legal services for clients across the Wirral, Merseyside and the North West for more than 100 years.
For more information on our landlord services, do not hesitate to get in touch with our expert solicitors today. Call us on 0151 666 9090, or send us your query by email by filling in our online contact form.
How can our specialist landlord solicitors help you?
We can help you with a range of issues that can arise in the life of a residential landlord. We will offer the highest quality service every step of the way, ensuring you are in the best possible position to secure your desired outcome.
Percy Hughes & Roberts Solicitors offers a full range of legal services for landlords, including:
- Drafting precedent tenancies, licences and guarantee agreements
- Drafting leases
- Reviewing and amending your standard tenancy agreement
- Advice in respect of compliance with relevant laws and statutes, including Tenancy Deposit Schemes.
- Recovering rent arrears
- Preparation and service of notices to quit and notices requiring possession
- Eviction of trespassers (squatters)
- Possession proceedings and bailiff evictions
A landlord has many legal responsibilities to tenants in order to ensure that the rights of all parties are protected. For example, there are strict rules about when a landlord can enter a property they own, even if it appears to be abandoned, and there can be serious consequences for a landlord who fails in this regard.
For this reason, it is vital that landlords seek legal advice and understand their rights and responsibilities when managing a rental property, to avoid any potential legal action.
Why choose Percy Hughes & Roberts Solicitors?
PHR's specialist landlord solicitors have extensive knowledge and experience in this area of the law, which means we are well-equipped to provide clear and comprehensive advice that can ensure your issues are dealt with quickly and effectively.
We are proud to have offered quality, concise legal advice for more than 100 years, and we are dedicated to helping members of the community we serve. As a local firm, we develop strong relationships with our clients (and local Courts) throughout the North West of England by building trust and communicating clearly.
This dedication to providing the highest standards of service is reflected in the fact that we hold a number of quality accreditations from various national organisations, such as Lexcel, the Law Society's quality standard.
Our legal practice is also renowned for the property conveyancing services we provide; this means that we can provide a broader range of legal services for landlords by managing the process of buying or selling property.
What should I do if I am involved in a dispute with a tenant?
Dealing with a problematic tenant can be extremely time-consuming and stressful. Cases involving problem tenants can also be serious and lead to a number of issues that have wider implications for landlords, including:
- Being owed rent (money) by your tenant
- Being denied access to your property
In some cases, landlords can find themselves paying to recover their property, which can be a source of great frustration.
It is important to seek legal advice at the earliest opportunity if you are involved in a dispute with a tenant. Landlords must meet particular legal requirements and uphold the rights of their tenants, which can lead to serious pitfalls in disputes; without legal support, it is easy to make a mistake and incur legal penalties.
The team at PHR Solicitors can offer practical guidance that is backed up by our extensive experience in handling this type of case. This means we are well-placed to advise you on the best course of action to meet your desired outcome. We can ensure that you meet all of your obligations and achieve the best possible resolution to a dispute.
How should I deal with a tenant who is in rental arrears?
The first step you should take is to talk to your tenant and see if you can resolve the situation amicably. You may be able to implement a payment plan or secure partial payment - it is up to the landlord to determine whether or not they are satisfied with the arrangement and you have no legal requirement to offer this. A conversation like this is also an opportunity to make the tenant aware that there may be legal consequences for their continued failure to pay.
If you need the money urgently - for example, to pay the mortgage on the property - you may be able to claim missed payments from a landlord insurance policy, so you should check your policy or speak to your insurance provider about this process.
If the tenant is in arrears for more than two months, this qualifies as legal grounds to pursue an eviction and you can take legal action to regain possession of the property. In some cases, this is sufficient to recover the money you are owed.
Carrying out an eviction legally requires strict adherence to procedures that are sometimes complicated, so it is important to instruct experienced landlord solicitors for support. A tenant may ignore your instructions to vacate the property, refuse to pay or seek legal representation themselves to defend their occupation of the property. In these cases, you may need to take the case to court, so you should also seek legal assistance through this process.
How can I regain possession of my property?
It is important to understand the responsibilities of a landlord and the legal pitfalls you can face when trying to regain possession of a property from a tenant. Eviction via a court order is the best way to do this legally - landlords can face legal difficulties if they simply change the locks or try to remove tenants in another way, so it is important to follow these procedures correctly.
The two mechanisms for eviction are the Section 8 notice and the Section 21 notice. A Section 21 notice can be used to seek possession of a property after an assured shorthold tenancy reaches the end of its fixed term, as specified by the tenancy agreement. It can also be used during a periodic tenancy, which has no fixed end date. A landlord does not need to rely on any legal grounds to evict the tenant using a Section 21 notice, but must have met a number of legal requirements. These include providing at least two months' notice to tenants and supplying them with a current gas safety certificate before signing the Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement and before they occupy the property a copy of the current Energy Performance Certificate and a "How to Rent" guide from the UK Government.
The other mechanism for eviction is the Section 8 notice. This allows landlords to evict tenants during an assured shorthold tenancy based on a number of legal grounds. These include circumstances under which a tenant has broken the terms of their tenancy agreement, used the property for illegal or immoral purposes, or owes rental arrears.
Legal grounds under Section 8 also enable residential landlords more freedom to manage their properties - for instance, by enabling an eviction in cases where a landlord wants to sell their property or move back into it as their main home.
If you need help to understand and fulfil your obligations as a landlord, or legal services to support you in removing a tenant, our Wirral-based solicitors have significant experience providing advice and guidance to property owners throughout Liverpool, Merseyside and the North West. Contact us today to learn how we can help.
Contact Percy Hughes & Roberts
To speak to our property solicitors at Percy Hughes & Roberts, give us a call on 0151 666 9090, or complete the enquiry form on our contact page to send us a query by email.