Hi - she moved in on 29 May, and the contract states a 6 month term for the tenancy.
Thank you so much for that.
So, her threats to go to take this to court probably won't yield the results she wants, based on our situation. My stance on this has been that there are no reasonable adjustments we can make to accommodate her scooter. The only thing i can think of is some sort of anchor point at the front of the house for her to fit a lock to, but she's adamant she can't do that as it would obstruct a public highway (it would literally be on the pavement (I can give you the address and you can see the situation on Google streetview if that's of any use!). She thinks this would invalidate the insurance, and is not an acceptable compromise. That being the case, it doesn't seem practical to do anything else. From your experience, there's nothing the court could order me to do here is there?
Going forward, if she continues to be late with payments, i know that i'll get into trouble with my mortgage, so i can't really afford for her to be consistently late. That being the case, what can i do to enforce the rent payments, or trigger an eviction? From what i've read, after the initial 6 months i'm free to trigger and eviction with no reasoning behind it, but within the 6 month period it needs 8 weeks of arrears. Is there any other way to chase this though? What if there are less than 8 weeks of arrears, but a consistent trend of missing payments or underpaying, which is already evident. In her last mail to me she stated that she intends to underpay on her rent by as much as £50 per week because she feels she can't afford more than that until she applies for her benefit payments. No idea how long this will take, and how far in arrears she'll end up, but this will impact my ability to pay my mortgage. Can i do anything about that?
Ok, that's reassuring.
What sort of argument would you need to present that persistent rent arrears were causing a problem? Seems a little unfair that you agree a rate and the tenant is allowed to effectively pay whatever they want for the first few weeks.
On the subject of the 8 week period, is it 8 full weeks worth of complete non payment? Or if she's short for 8 consecutive weeks (i.e. she continues to pay 2/3 of the agreed rent for 8 weeks)? I suspect the latter will be the scenario i'm in, so it would be useful to know whether the court consider deliberate part-payment the same as non-payment.
Last question, i promise! Is there anything that protects the landlord in this instance? I mean, what's to stop a tenant signing a contract stating that they'll pay a certain amount, and the tenant knowing full well they have no intention of paying it. They just decide to pay half of the agreed amount, so as to avoid falling so far behind that they are the equivalent of 8 full weeks in arrears?
In this case, she would likely contest that her housing benefit or disability benefit hasn't been granted yet, and so whilst she's eligible for funding to cover the full amount, she doesn't have it available at present. From what i understand the courts would likely grant in her favour in this instance, but the landlord is the one who suffers, having to cover the additional expense themselves.
Is there nothing that would help protect the landlord from essentially fraudulent tenants?