The eviction process is a part of the renting process that nobody wants to go through. Whether you are a landlord or a tenant, eviction is a last resort and it can be a frustrating and painful experience for all involved. New research highlights the quite how high the cost of evicting a tenant can be for a landlord.
Benham and Reeves, a letting and sales agent, has carried out research into the cost of evicting a tenant from a property. It turns out that the average time to evict a tenant is approximately nine months and the process can cost a landlord up to £50,000. This includes an average of more than £6,100 in lost rent.
However, the lost rental income doesn’t begin to cover the variety of costs a landlord can face when evicting a tenant. Cleaning, redecorating and renovations are a common occurrence and must be paid for. In addition, the landlord will have to cover mortgage costs at the same time.
The research shows that the two rooms most often in need of care are the bathroom and the kitchen, where average costs can be as high as £8,000 and £4,875 respectively. The average cost of redecorating (£2,900), new windows (£7,000) and legal fees (£3,000) are equally prohibitive for many landlords.
It comes as no great surprise that costs in London are generally higher. Kensington and Chelsea is the most expensive area of the country for landlords to deal with a rogue tenant, costing as much as £54,647. Camden is not far behind with costs of £51,263, and other boroughs including Hammersmith, Richmond, Hackney, Wandsworth and Tower hamlets all see costs exceeding £40,000.
Elsewhere in the country, landlords can expect to face significant expenses in areas such as Oxford and Cambridge (both £36,000), Bristol, Edinburgh, Bournemouth, Manchester and Portsmouth (all £33,000). In fact, landlords in all major cities are looking at a bill of £30,000 or more to evict a rogue tenant.
Marc von Grundherr, director at Benham and Reeves, said: “Rogue tenants are a landlord’s absolute worst nightmare and apart from the stress and time consumed dealing with them, the financial impact can be crippling.
“Kitchens, bathrooms, and windows are often the main features targeted as they know that these are the most costly areas of a property to replace and more often than not they will smash appliances to pieces, disconnect pipping and shatter windows for no other reason than to cause the maximum amount of damage they can.”
Of course, the best solution for landlords and tenants is to not get into a situation where a drawn out eviction process is required in the first place. A good lettings agent can smooth a tenancy, in particular the process of moving out, and save everyone involved time, stress and money.