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Can a tenant be evicted for not keeping the place tidy?

Eviction

Can a tenant be evicted for not keeping the place tidy?

Tidiness is very much in the eye of the beholder. What some people might describe as tidy might look to others like a right mess. When does untidiness become a real problem, though? Could it be grounds for eviction?

Types of eviction notice

Section 8

The section 8 eviction notice is what would be served to tenants when there are grounds for evicting them. Such reasons could include causing damage to the property, for example, which breaks the tenancy agreement terms.

Section 21

A section 21 notice can be issued by a landlord without them having particular grounds or a legal reason for seeking eviction.

Standards of tidiness

What a landlord cannot realistically do is apply their own standards of cleanliness and tidiness to their tenants. People should not be evicted simply because they do not keep the place quite as clean and tidy as the landlord would like. The tenant has to right to enjoy their home as they so choose, as long as they are living within the terms of the tenancy agreement.

Actual damage

Tenants may contravene their tenancy agreement if they cause actual damage to the property. Such damage could be the result of untidiness, carelessness or not keeping the plan clean. For example, if a bath is covered in scum and limescale that is impossible to remove, or black mould has appeared all over the walls, then the tenant may be to blame. If a lack of tidiness or cleanliness causes actual damage, then it may give the landlord sufficient grounds for eviction under section 8.

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