Council insisting on a possession order before they will re-house a tenant?

Many people reading this page will answer yes to this question.

A large quantity of our business comes from housing officers advising tenants to stay put until the landlord produces a bailiff order.

The council’s hands are tied where re-housing is concerned. They cannot re-house anyone unless they are considered to be homeless, as the people already on the waiting list usually get priority. It used to be that once a tenant received a notice to quit this was enough to be at the risk of homelessness. This is no longer the case.

Due to the current economic climate there are many families living in poverty and unable to pay the cost of private rent and living expenses resulting in tenants falling into arrears. This is causing a huge strain on the governments [depleting] housing stock. Many new schemes have been introduced within local councils working with private landlords to help improve this situation; however, this does not help you right now in your current predicament.

To be considered homeless the tenant usually needs to be presented with a bailiff order for eviction. So, the notices need serving, the court possession order needs granting and the tenants can still be advised to stay. The landlord in many cases is now forced to apply for the bailiff order and have this granted. If the council have agreed to re-house them the tenant is then [usually] scheduled to be re-housed prior to the date the bailiff is due to attend.

Is this unfair to the landlord? YES.


Is there much you can do about it? Unfortunately NOT.


The housing officers are just doing their jobs and the housing stock is at an overflowing capacity. The best you can do is act as soon as possible and start the process going.