My Tenant Has Left the Property Without Telling Me

Written By PropertyLoop
February 18, 2021

It goes without saying that tenants should uphold the terms of the tenancy agreement and remain within the property, paying rent on time until the fixed term comes to an end. However, to the dismay of many rental property owners, some occupants have been known to vacate the property early without offering the owner any notice.  

Naturally, this can leave the landlord not just without a rental income to depend upon, but also leave them increasingly exposed to any repair costs, mortgage payments and management fees. 

What is it called when a tenant leaves without notice?

Can a Tenant Leave Without Giving Notice 

In many cases simply because the tenant has vacated the property does not mean that they are absolved of their legal obligation to periodically provide the landlord with rent. This simply means that whilst they may have abandoned the tenancy, they are still liable for it leaving the renter to accumulate significant arrears, and a landlord with a rental they cannot repopulate with new tenants. 

What Happens if a Tenant Leaves Without Giving Notice?

If a tenant leaves a rental property without first providing the landlord with any notice, as mentioned, they are still obligated to pay rent each month. To this end landlords will be able to go through the courts to obtain a court order, legally compelling the tenant to pay the due amount of rent and the accumulated arrears.  

It is also essential for tenants to consider that if they accumulate rent arrears or abandon a tenancy it will likely impact their ability to rent a property in the future as their current landlord will be unlikely willing to provide a positive reference to the next owner.  

What Is Considered Abandonment of a Property? 

Put simply tenant abandonment is when an occupant of a rental property chooses to leave before the agreed-upon fixed term has come to a close. The key in this scenario is that the owner of the rental property has not received any prior notice from the occupant, often leaving them to notice after the due rental payment has not been received.  

With this being said the landlord must be sure that the rental property has in fact been left abandoned by the tenants as if this is not the case proceedings could quickly lead to claims of unfair evictions when the occupants were simply on holiday.  

However, if the property has been vacated by the tenants the landlord will need to obtain a court order of possession to reclaim the property. Alternatively, the tenant may have surrendered the tenancy, returning the keys to the landlord.  

Can Unpaid Rent Be Deducted From the Deposit? 

Thankfully for landlords that have experienced a tenant that is proving reluctant in paying their rent, any accumulated arrears can be deducted from, the amount of the security deposit that is returned to the tenant at the end of the fixed term. With this being said as the tenant fees act 2019 places a limit on the amount landlords can request their tenants pay for the security deposit, typically five weeks rent, landlords will be unable to recoup any significant amount of arrears, particularly if they also have to cover the costs of repairing the rental property.  

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