OK here's my latest installment of my 9 month tenant nightmare - the house may be empty by this Sunday!
Just to recap: The official tenant owes me two months' rent, is living and working in Boston, has been illegally subletting the place to students half her age, and now wants me to help her claim housing benefit whilst still subletting it and wants me to say that a 4 year old is in the house in the process.
So, the two subletters are moving out tomorrow and Landlord action say I can put an abandonement notice on the front door on Sunday and change the locks. I've been waiting for a court date for four weeks now, and still no word (spent ages on the phone this week to no avail).
The official tenant has some possessions there, just clothes, I think she has other houses in the UK which she does the same thing to (ie gets contract, moves others in, stays in the US, gets housing benefit and rental income from house) but I have no proof. I'd love to post her name on this site to help protect other landlords - am I allowed?
Can I legally change the locks like that and serve an abandonement notice? Do I have to email the tenant in Boston first? If I do I'm worried she'll say she's coming over and money's on its way - she's been saying that for several weeks. Can she take me to court if she's not living in the country and is a non-resident?
Her 6 week deposit would cover the rent up until tomorrow (saturday anyway) but not the court costs, inventory, clean, reminders about late payments etc. but better this than to wait for a court date.
I have a locksmith on standby for Sunday midday!!!