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3 blind mice | 10:51 Sat 04th Oct 2008 | Law
5 Answers
i could do with some advice.

i rent a house out and my tenants are the dirtiest people you have ever met, they have 2 dogs and the house smells like urine, i am unsure whether its human or animal urine.and when you come out you feel as though you need to itch.

any way, i requested they got rid of the dogs by a certain date which they failed to do, i then went to the house and told them that whilst the dogs where there i would NOT do any maintenance to the property.

this morning i have received a letter from them telling me that the boiler has gone and with the winter fast approaching the situation could be dangerous especially for the children. (which i do care for the kids).

so how do i stand? can i make them get rid of the dogs, should i make them keep the property to the letting agreement. should i ask them to leave?

all advice will be appreciated.


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It all depends on your contract wth them (assuming there is a formal contract). If the contract says pets are not allowed, then they are in breach by keeping them, and you can tell them they either get rid of the dogs or leave the property themselves. If they had agreement i the contract or written agreement subseqent to the contract tht they could have pets, then its harder.
In that circumstance, you need to check the contract for anything regarding how the property is to be treated. if there is something in the contract about mainting it in proper condition etc, then you can again take action on the basis of breach. it may not allow you to specify that the dogs have to go, but you could either use it to ge them to leave, or at least clean up.
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i requested the dogs to be removed by september 1st 2008 by letter. to which they have failed to do so.

the reason i asked for the dogs to go is because i could not get any workmen to do anything in the house... ie they would go and have a look but never return.
Assuming this is an AST, is it on a fixed term or is it a periodic tenancy? How long to go if it's a fixed term? Are they up to date with the rent?

You'd have a hard job evicting on the basis of having pets in the property no matter what it says in the agreement. However, if youre not happy I would issue them with an S21 notice which will expire either after the end of the fixed term or in two months time if on a periodic. You cant simply 'ask them to leave' as this would have no legal significance. If you dont know how to regain possession then speak to a solicitor.

There's the possibility of using the section 8 route but I doubt if you would get possession on the basis of them having pets. If they are 2 months behind with the rent you can get possession this way.

In the meantime there's not a lot you can do because it's how they leave the property at the end which is important not the condition during the tenancy.

You are still obliged to perform maintenance on the property, including the boiler, as this is irrelevant to the state of the property. If you dont they can get it fixed themselves and deduct from the rent.
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Tell you what 3 blind mice, rent your house to me and the mrs. We are on DSS for 3 months tops until we can get work. We are responsible, mature, clean, we do not pee anywhere else except the bog, we do not have pets and there is no chance of kids knocking the place about (ie we are a gay couple)!

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