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Possession Proceedings


The ideal situation for a landlord who owns a buy to let property is to have long-term, quiet, tidy tenants who always pay their rent on time. Happily, most tenants fit this description and are considerate of their landlord, home and neighbours.


Unfortunately, sometimes the landlord/tenant relationship can go wrong and you are left with no choice but to evict tenants from your property and recover possession. To remove troublesome tenants you need to enact Possession Proceedings against them.

In what situations can I begin possession proceedings against my tenants?

As a landlord you may wish to recover possession of your property under the following circumstances:

  • A fixed-term tenancy has come to an end.
  • The tenant has not paid their rent and is in arrears.
  • Damage to the property has been caused by the tenant.
  • The tenant has breached the tenancy agreement in some way.
  • You wish to sell the property.
  • The tenant’s neighbours are complaining about the tenant being a nuisance.

What is the standard procedure of a possession proceeding?

End of a Fixed Term

If you have a fixed term tenancy agreement with your tenant then under s21 of the Housing Act 1988 by giving notice you can re-take possession of your property at the end of the fixed term. You do not have to provide a reason for re-taking possession. To use Section 21 the tenant’s deposit must be secured under the tenancy deposit scheme. If the tenant fails to move out following the notice then court proceedings will need to be instigated.

Gaining Possession under Section 8 of the Housing Act 1988

If you wish start possession proceedings and you are not at the end of a fixed-term you can seek possession under Section 8 of the Housing Act 1988. The first step to recovering possession of your property is to issue a ‘Notice of Possession’. If this notice expires and the tenant has not vacated the premises you will need to apply to the Court to seek a possession order.

Let us advise you on possession proceedings

At Bennett Oakley Solicitors our lawyers have many years’ experience in dealing with possession proceedings and we can advise you through the procedure in a pro-active, practical manner.



Our Possession Proceedings Team

James Leighton

Managing Director

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