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Bailiffs have evicted the tenant – but why do I feel like the baddie?

This morning the bailiffs attended to serve the eviction order and take possession of my flat.  It was the one which the police raided earlier in the year which I wrote about here

I had been told by my solicitor that 9 times out of 10 the tenants have already left as they know once it gets to the bailiffs then there is no way they can stay.  Well this was never going to happen with my tenant. He likes to play games. And he knows the system.

He left his 8 month pregnant girlfriend at the flat (who’s not on the tenancy) and his dad – and told them to tell us that he was in hospital.  The girlfriend and tenant’s dad asked if they could have some more time as they had not been able to organise a van. They claimed that if they had 2 more days they would be able to organise it and to remove their belongings. Bear in mind – they have known the bailiffs would be coming for over a week. Prior to that they knew last month a court order had found in my favour for the possession.

The bailiff asked me if I would give them the additional time. I replied that they had known for weeks now they should have left and the goods should have been moved before today. I also realised that the bailiffs were overstretched and due to be evicting elsewhere so they didn’t want to hang around while the tenants’ moved their goods.  But, I stood firm – the bailiffs were there to secure possession of my property. By law the courts had found in my favour. I informed them the tenant had, had adequate time to organise a van and I believed that a time extension would make little difference to them but to me, as the owner of the property it would mean yet more loss of rent, and a delay in trying to put the flat back into habitable order.

I informed the bailiffs the tenants had to leave now as prescribed in the eviction order from the court.

This is the first time I have ever had to use a court order and bailiffs to evict a tenant. And let me tell you it doesn’t feel good. I am a human being too and it is not nice to have to be a “not nice person” and make “not nice decisions”.

What left a bad taste in my mouth was when it felt like the bailiff was also on the tenant’s side. Maybe they weren’t – but it felt yet again that I as the landlord was the baddie. To be honest, it’s really pd me off.

The tenant wrecked the flat, was a criminal (awaiting conviction), didn’t pay his rent and then used his heavily pregnant girlfriend as a pawn…and yet I have been left to feel like I did something wrong.

The tenant and the girlfriend have a new place to live. Meanwhile I am left with the legal, court and bailiff bills, the refurbishment costs of the flat and months of rental arrears to write off – oh and the guilty conscience.

 

 

9 comments
  1. Mike Clarke

    Eviction of bad tenants is not a very nice experience for any landlord, I agree that we landlords are made to feel guilty from all quarters when we are forced to evict tenants in serious rent arrears, but we also need to remember that it is just business!
    I have gone through the process a few times and have used Legal4Landlords specialist eviction services who have been superbly efficient and have dealt with all the legal hassle for me.
    Remember Business is business and you have nothing to feel guilty over!

    Mike Clarke

    1. Sam

      Thanks Mike. I agree it is part of the business we are in. However, my issue is why we as landlords are seemingly treated differently to any other business sector when somebody does not pay their bills.

  2. Rich Greenland

    We are treated differently because we supply one of life’s essentials – shelter.

    Probably the bailiffs felt the same as you, they are human beings too and it can’t feel good for them either.

    BUT I don’t think you should feel bad. This tenant was clearly using his GF and father as a ‘human shield’, that is dreadful emotional manipulation and pretty despicable IMHO. You have to get rid of someone like that, who has trashed your flat and not paid any rent, and ASAP.

  3. Jonathan

    It’s similar to utility services. They have lots of legal restrictions on cutting someone off, but when a persistent non-payer eventually does get cut off, most of the sympathy seems to be for the customer.

    Never mind that have not paid (or often even responded) for YEARS before, because access to electricity is seen as a basic human right, it’s seen as ‘wrong’.

    Don’t you just wish that the promises from nuclear in the 50’s – energy so cheap it would not be worth charging for it – were true!

  4. arvin

    I am going through a similar process and to be honest i have no sympthy for tenants who use the law (which i think over protects tenats) to live in your property for free.

    my tenants have not paid me for 4 months went to court and openly said they have no hardship so were told to leave in 14days and simply ignored the court, so now i had to pay for bailiffs to come and evict them. i cant wait for that to happen. its been a almost a week for the bailiffs aplication and i have yet to hear from them. Hope they throw these people out on the 24th december for all i care.

  5. E Hendy

    I am a landlord currently waiting for a date from bailiffs and I sympathise with your feelings. However I find it the law with regards to tenants and landlords grossly unfair. I am currently using an overdraft and credit cards to cover the deficit left by months of unpaid rent. I have lost all my savings and am footing the bill not only for my tenant’s living expenses but also the legal costs to get him out of my flat, in order to sell it (at a low price, due to the damage he has caused) and pay my own debts. And I still feel like the baddie! What frustrates me the most is that whilst I am trying to shave a few quid off my Tesco shop every week and working overtime to cover the cost of his free rent, he is lounging around at my expense playing video games on a massive telly, voluntarily out of work. Yet the law sides with him, the CA advise him to stay put, while I work round the clock, watching my bank account get further into the red, and I STILL feel like the baddie… go figure!

    1. Sam

      I am so sorry to hear your situation. Have you checked with your insurance company if you have legal expenses cover – this would cover these bills and sometimes loss of rent. Can you also check if you have a ‘malicious damage’ clause in your insurance as you may be able to claim against this to get the property back into habitable condition. Lastly, I know it’s really hard when your back’s against the wall but please don’t make any snap decisions about selling the property. Try not to be forced into a situation which is out of your control. It’s important to try and retain some sort of buffer in these stressful situations so that you can try and think long term. Where possible maybe talk to your mortgage company about a payment holiday/ reduced payments for a short while to get through this situation (if you explain to them). Lastly, please do not let one bad tenant put you off. Do not let them win. Shit happens. I know it’s hard but you will get through this.

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