How private landlord solicitors work
If you rent out a property you own and are having disagreements with your rental or leasehold tenants, you may well need an experienced private landlord solicitor.
However, the legal process can be expensive. It is often at least worth trying to improve communications with your tenants or a professional mediation process first.
If these approaches haven’t worked for you though, specialist legal advice is your next port of call. If you are a private landlord thinking about finding a lawyer to help you with a housing dispute, here is how to go about it:
Things To Try Before You Find A Private Landlord Solicitor
Legal action – especially if your case goes to court – can be vital, but it can also be costly. That’s why it is always worth at least attempting to resolve disagreements with your tenants amicably before you proceed to litigation. Before engaging a housing solicitor, you might want to consider:
1) More Communication
It’s amazing how often disputes between tenants and landlords can be resolved simply by talking to one another.
It’s easy enough for landlord-tenant relationships to be virtually non-existent. The act of reaching out and making your concerns plain in a calm and logical fashion can often do the trick.
If it doesn’t seem to be working, you can still collect any correspondence you have sent or received and start making notes about what has happened so far and when. This will prove helpful when or if you move on to legal proceedings.
Even if simple communication fails, a professional mediation process may succeed. You’ll sit down with the help of an experienced third party who can help you try to resolve everything without going to court. This is a proven and effective method.
Keep Your Tenancy Agreement Handy
Under the Housing Act, as a landlord, you have certain rights and responsibilities regarding any property you lease. Your tenant has rights and responsibilities too.
However, the law does not cover everything. Those areas of responsibility that aren’t defined in law are usually set out in the tenancy agreement. If you are a leaseholder, the lease agreement you signed with your leasehold tenants should perform the same function.
This frequently makes these documents the basis for resolving disputes of any kind. They should provide a definition of where responsibility lies for any given area or item. Everything from expected basic maintenance to when making noise is acceptable.
These documents should leave no room for interpretation – and are legally enforceable. This means you will ideally have a copy of your lease or tenancy agreement to refer to in any dispute.
Get Legal Advice Before You Start The Litigation Process
Although it is worth trying to avoid the legal process via mediation and better communication wherever possible, it is vital to get expert legal advice before you consider starting down the path to litigation.
This is because legal action is potentially costly – most particularly if you end up needing to go to court. A specialist landlord solicitor will be able to advise you on the strengths and weaknesses of your case and the best way to achieve the outcome you are looking for though.
Because the last thing you want is to have already started some sort of legal process that has little or no chance of success because no legal advice was sought to begin with.
Lawyers tend to want to win cases. This means you should be able to get in touch and discuss your situation with any housing solicitor you are considering using and get a clear sense of how keen they are to take your case and your likely odds of success in return.
It is very risky to proceed without getting this kind of expert advice from someone who understands the specific law in question.
Does Your Lawyer Cover The Type Of Landlord You Are?
One often-overlooked aspect of choosing a private landlord solicitor is that not all lawyers work with all kinds of property-owning clients. For example, some solicitors only or never work with:
- Private landlords
- Commercial landlords
- Local Authority landlords
- Nominal or offshore landlords
This makes it worth clearly stating the kind of landlord you are before you get talking about the services and support your prospective lawyer offers or their fees.
How To Find The Right Private Landlord Solicitors For You
Wondering how to start choosing between private landlord solicitors in your area?
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