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Eviction is a legal process. It can take a few months. You will always get notice and can sometimes stop an eviction.

Your landlord will send a notice if they want to evict you. If you have an assured tenancy, this will be a ‘notice seeking possession’, which will tell you why your landlord wants to evict you and the earliest date they can apply to court.

The notice is the start of a legal process.

You can only be evicted if your landlord has followed the proper steps. These are:

  • Issue a valid Section 21 or Section 8 notice
  • Get a possession order from the court if you haven’t left by the date on your Section 21 or Section 8 notice
  • Ask the court for a warrant of possession if you haven’t left by the date on the possession order
  • Get an eviction order from the court. In this case, bailiffs have the right to make you leave your home although they must give you two weeks’ notice of an eviction date.

There is detailed information on the Shelter website about the eviction proceedings and the types of notice. They also have a ‘notice checker’ to check if your landlord has given you enough notice.

Eviction from a council or housing association property

Most council or housing association tenants have secure or assured tenancies. These give you strong rights. You can only be evicted if your landlord can prove a legal reason in court. It may be easier to evict a tenant if they have an introductory or starter tenancy which is usually a trial period.

Information about council or housing association tenancies is given below:

Notice to leave from a private landlord

Most private renters have assured shorthold tenancies.

Your landlord must issue you a Section 21 or a Section 8 notice as a first step to eviction from this type of tenancy. There are 3 stages for most private renters:

  • Notice
  • Court action
  • Eviction by bailiffs

If your landlord does not follow the legal process, it could be an illegal eviction.

You have fewer rights if you are a lodger who lives with your landlord.

Rent arrears and evictions

If you are trying to deal with rent arrears, always speak with your landlord or agent. They may be able to help sort your problems out. They may let you stay while problems get sorted out. Do not ignore letters from your landlord or agent.

Support from councils for tenants who have rent arrears:

Mortgage arrears and repossession

Shelter has information and advice for those who have mortgage arrears or are at risk of repossession. Citizens Advice also has information on mortgage problems.

Breathing Space for rent or mortgage arrears

The breathing space scheme can help if you have missed rent or mortgage payments. It can give you time to reduce your arrears, get help with money and debt and come up with a repayment plan.

You need to be referred to the scheme by a debt adviser.

More information on breathing space

Legal Aid for Possession Proceedings

Housing Loss Prevention Advice Service is a new Government funded advice and representation service to anyone facing possession proceedings. Help is available from the moment you receive written notice that someone is seeking possession of your home. Your financial situation will not affect your right to access this service and you will not need to pay.

Find your nearest housing loss prevention advice service

Further information on tenancies and rent can be found on Page 2

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