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Help needed - nuisance tenant.


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Hi there,

Would like some advice from yourselves.. particularly those with some experience or knowledge of law.

I am an acting agent for an overseas landlord, and have been letting his flat out for him with his permission. He is mainly "hands off", and would like to stay that way.

I let the flat out to a tenant who worked as a solicitor and appeared to be a reasonable person.

He said he did not feel that the paperwork provided was adequate and proceeded to write his own receipt for holding deposit.

In this handwritten receipt, he wrote a few things that he wanted sorting out, and that the rent would be 300pw until these were done to his satisfaction.

He was in a hurry to move in, so moved his things in before a tenancy agreement was signed. Once he moved in, he did not accept our agreement, and wanted to use his own AST modified by himself -and which did not contain acceptable terms which we disagreed with.

He has refused to sign any other paperwork and has refused to move. As he paid the rent, we let him stay. Unfortunately he has been a very difficult tenant.

When his toilet/plumbing was leaking, and needed to be fixed, it took many weeks before he allowed access to the plumbing company and several different plumbers were contacted many times as they got tired of him changing appointments multiple times. Although this issue was finally sorted out by the building insurance, he decided to give himself a discount on the rent, which had not been agreed on.

Looking back on the records, he started to pay on a weekly basic a reduced sum of 285 since november 2012 on a weekly basis, sometimes missing out rental payments in between.


2 nov 570

16 nov 285

30 nov 285

11dec 285

18 dec 285

27 dec 285

07 jan 285

28 jan 285

25 feb 285

6 mar 285

20 march 285

Bearing in mind he is a solicitor, and is always strong headed and is difficult to get hold of, what should our next step be?


1. difficult tenant

2. erratic rent payments

3. difficult access, reports that he is always busy/working.

4. no AST due to him refusing to sign any other AST other than his own with his own terms favourable to him. as you can see due to no AST, the only paperwork we have is whatever is written in the holding deposit paperwork.

I accept there were issues that shouldve been sorted in the beginning but he had a good manner and appeared reasonable in the outset, which totally changed once he had moved everything in.

Thanks for any help.

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I guess you are just helping someone (landlord) out and a letting agent isn't your profession.

First off the tenant shouldn't have been given access (keys) to the property before the contract was signed. But that aside the issue is what to do now?

Though a AST hasn't been signed there is a AST in place but it is verbal. The question is, is it a 6 or 12 month tenancy and is the rent period weekly or monthly?

Solicitors or trainee solicitors can be the some of the worst tenants and they are not as clever as think they are at times but you need to be careful and know what you are doing.

I would assume unless agreed otherwise that the tenancy is 6 monthly and as rent has been paid weekly that is the rent period and on that basis serve a s21 but serve one with a saving clause and one that doesn't need a date to be entered. If the tenant then doesn't move out after the 2 months/8 weeks you will need to apply to the court for an eviction order but as there isn't a written contract there will be a hearing which the landlord will need to attend or a solicitor on their behalf.

I would respectfully suggest that you need professional help and join https://www.landlordsguild.com/ and speak to Adrian who will be able to help.

Another issue is when the landlord is a non-res you have a non-res number from the inland revenue otherwise as a agent you should be deducting tax before passing it on to the landlord less your fee. Otherwise you will be liable for the tax not collected.

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I a no expert and I could be completely wrong so double check my advice!

I think if you did not agree to the solicitor's version of the tenancy agreement then it is not the agreeent in place.

I think British law requires mutua agreement and therefore I guess your original agreement is in place as even though he did not sign it he had read it and moved in without any other agreement in place.

A friend told me that solicitors are barred from their profession if they have a county court judgement against them - so when her tenant disappeared without paying the rent - a trainee solicitor. She immediately started proceeedings against him through the Small Claims Court for arears - which is very easy to D I Y at minimal cost.

The ex-tenant paid immediately without going to court. You might be able to get your areas paid this easily.

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