Resolving a landlord-tenant dispute through mediation

shu-Landlord tenant disputes-1075401572-1500x1000Mediation is a cost-effective alternative to formal litigation in court when there is a landlord-tenant dispute.

Mediation is a valuable resource when disputes arise between landlord and tenant pertaining to various issues like rent arrears, anti-social behaviour, neighbour complaints, dilapidations and disrepair claims, among others. The purpose of mediation is to help landlord and tenant find a mutually agreeable solution without the formal rules of court including discussing issues that may not be admitted in court. Once both parties reach an agreement, the mediator can write up a settlement which both parties will follow.

Despite the benefits, mediation isn’t right for every situation and this is where we come in. At Romain Coleman, our specialist commercial property solicitors only represent landlords and we can help you to decide if mediation is the right route to consider.

What happens in mediation?

Mediation involves an independent person, the mediator, arranging a voluntary, informal meeting between landlord and tenant to discuss the issues. Afterwards, the mediator who is trained to deal with difficult discussions will attempt to resolve the dispute and negotiate a settlement. It must be said that the mediator is not permitted to make any decisions or enforce them, and the process may require a fee, which means mediation is not suitable for every situation. Let us help you to explore all options and make a decision on whether to mediate or to litigate.

What possible conflicts are there?

Disputes between a landlord and their tenants can arise from a damaged property, unpaid rent, break clauses, subletting, contractual disputes, possession actions where you must get a court order to regain possession of your property and other forms of landlord-tenant disputes stated on this page.

Rent arrears are one of the most common disputes. The logic is simple – if your tenant falls behind in their rent payment, you can evict them, but there are very strict rules which you must follow in practice.

If you are a landlord of a residential property and your tenant has not been paying their rent, it is natural that you would want to get the tenant out as soon as possible by serving a Section 8 or Section 21 Notice which gives the tenant time to leave. It is essential to get the notices right; otherwise, you are likely to face issues when you continue with court proceedings for possession.

If you are a landlord of a commercial property and your tenant has not paid their rent, the best route is to apply to the court for possession which gives your tenant a reasonable time to fulfil their rent obligations. You must not, however, do anything without following the correct procedure.

In both instances, applying for possession is a lengthy process and sometimes mediation can help to speed up the resolution.

Prevention is key

Although mediation and litigation are great options to protect your rights, dealing with the disputes from the outset is key and may even help to keep your legal costs down. Getting the contracts right and speaking to us before taking any action against your tenants are sensible choices because our specialist commercial property solicitors have years of experience providing legal advice only to landlords. Let us help you to resolve your landlord-tenant disputes quickly and economically by calling us at 0208 520 4555.

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