Homeless after renting from a private landlord

Landlords are entitled to evict tenants, but must do so legally and must follow the proper legal procedure to require a tenant to leave their home.

One of the main reasons for a legal procedure being in place is to provide due time for tenants to find other accommodation. We will check that a landlord has followed the correct repossession process.

The process starts with a notice to end your tenancy. If you have received a notice contact the housing advice team as soon as possible for advice and assistance. There are steps that can be taken to prevent you from becoming homeless. Our housing advice team will speak to the landlord on your behalf.

If the notice is valid and the landlord wants to repossess, finding somewhere else to live is often difficult. It is worth trying to work with the landlord to try to resolve any problems so they do not continue possession. Eviction and re-letting can be expensive for a landlord.

  • Speak to your landlord as soon as possible. Do you know the reason why they have given you notice? If not, ask them.
  • If the reason is rent arrears and you are struggling to pay your rent or have other debts that affect your ability to pay your rent, you should seek money and debt advice from your local Citizen’s Advice or Job Centre.
  • Offer to do what you reasonably can to address the problems.
  • If you need help to manage your tenancy, agree to accept ongoing support either from the landlord or from a support service
  • If the landlord agrees that they no longer have to leave, ask them to confirm this in writing

It is legal for tenants to stay past the end date of a section 21 notice. If you need to stay you should discuss this with your landlord. You should continue to pay rent and seek advice as soon as possible. Your landlord may prefer not to pay the fees to start court action, even though they can usually recover the cost from tenants later. A landlord may agree not to apply to the court if, for example, you are doing everything you can to look for alternative accommodation and addressing rent and problems in the meantime.

Shelter is an excellent resource for help and advice for all types of tenancies and notices. For more information visit their website - Eviction notices from private landlords - Shelter England.

The law on private sector evictions frequently changes so it is important that you seek immediate housing advice.

Contact Us 

Our Housing Options Team can provide you with advice on your housing needs and explain what options are available to you. 

You can contact us by 

Phone: 01785 619000

Email: housingadvice@staffordbc.gov.uk 

If you are homeless and the council offices are closed, then you can contact the homelessness out of hours service on 01785 619170. You should only use this service if you have nowhere to stay immediately. 

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