As a private landlord you'll be glad to know that when it comes to repossessing your property in Scotland, the lawmakers have made it nice and complicated for you. Even if a tenant has committed a serious breach of the tenancy agreement, there is no guarantee that you will be able to evict them. So how to evict a tenant?
There are two handy routes for eviction that are available to you, but neither is fool proof.
HOW THE SECTION 33 ROUTE WORKS:
-At least two months prior to the end of the tenancy,
-You serve a notice under section 33 of the Housing (Scotland) Act 1988 together with a Notice to Quit on your tenant.
-If you have served all the Notices correctly and your tenant refuses to budge, the court is obliged to give you an order to evict them.
BUT the section 33 procedure is only available to you if you have a Short Assured Tenancy Agreement. If you haven't served a Form AT5 prior to the creation of the tenancy and/or your tenancy is for less than 6 months, you can't use it.
HOW THE RENT ARREARS ROUTE WORKS:
-If your tenant owes more than three months rent,
-You can serve a Form AT6 upon them using ground 8 of the Housing (Scotland) Act 1988. The AT6 can be served on a period of two weeks notice and tells the tenant that you are going to take them to court on that ground.
-If you do end up in court, and the tenant still owes you in excess of three months rent at that stage, you should be entitled to get a court order for eviction.
BUT the court will not be obliged to give you your order where the arrears have accrued as a result of housing benefit or where you have failed to advise the tenant in the tenancy agreement that you may seek repossession on that ground.
If you're struggling to make sense of the rules and regulations or want further guidance on repossessing your property, get in touch with our LetLaw team.