‘You can dictate in a house that you own, not one that I own.’ Woman Wonders Whether She Crossed A Moral Line Kicking Out Long Term Tenants
by Trisha Leigh
We’ve all heard the landlord horror stories, and our hearts tend to be on the side of the tenants, even if the law isn’t.
That said, OP doesn’t think she’s in the wrong legally or morally on this one.
She bought a house when she was in her 20s near where she grew up. Soon afterward she realized that the town was too quiet and slow for the lifestyle she was currently living, and she wanted to travel – so she rented it out.
I (38F) bought a 4 bedroom house in semi-rural Buckinghamshire when I was 23. It was a lovely big house, but the town was not fun for a 23 year old.
I always said I’d love it of I were 40 with kids, but it wasn’t a great place for someone in their 20s.
When I was 26, I put the house on the rental market and moved to London where I lived for 2 years before moving to Australia.
The same family has been living there for 15 years while she trotted the globe. They paid on time, they took care of the place, and made it their home.
I found a lovely family to rent the house. A husband and wife both in their mid to late 40s with one child, no pets, and respectable jobs.
Rent was always paid on time, the estate agent always had good reports from inspection visits and we never heard any complaints from neighbours.
FF 14 years later, they’re still living there.
So, when she decided it was time to come home and put down roots – in her house – they took issue with being told they had a few months to pack up and find somewhere else to live.
I’ve been travelling the world full time for some years, spent the pandemic in Australia then resumed travelling post lockdowns.
I’m now ready to return home, so I informed my estate agent that I want to break the contract and have them move out in 3 months’ time, 2 months more notice than I’m obligated to give.
In their minds, the only reason she would need that particular house is if she had a family now, too, but OP doesn’t see why it matters; it’s her house and she wants to live there.
The tenants were surprised to hear I was coming back and tried to ask if I was coming to live with my family. The agent brushed off question and told them to vacate in 3 months and that they can help find alternative accommodation.
Tenants texted me directly to ask same question and I replied “haha, no husband or kids in tow – just ready to set roots again! Looking forward to being home” (I grew up 20 mins aways).
I got a text calling me selfish for: kicking them out of their home of nearly 15 years; wanting a big house all to myself; placing my needs of travel and enjoyment ahead of starting a family and getting married.
Some of her friends and family think they have a point, though, so she’s appealing to Reddit’s good sense.
They told me I should leave them to buy the house for what I bought it for (it’s doubled in price since) and go live in my other house. I replied “you can dictate in a house that you own, not one that I own. Please have your things packed by x date or I’ll evict you and sue you for the costs”.
My friends are saying I’m kicking them out of their home and I don’t need such a big place so I can rent or sell my student flat for a deposit for a house nearby. My rented house is 90% paid though and I don’t want to start again with a new mortgage.
I want to live in my house. I have been fair to the tenants and reasonable in my request. AITA?
Let’s see if they take the landlord’s side for once.
The top comment says it’s definitely none of their business why she wants to move back into her own house.
This person agrees, saying that the tenants are acting pretty entitled.
And this commenter doesn’t think there’s anything morally gray happening here either.
They don’t see a reasonable way OP could have been wrong.
Some people, though, think she could have returned their being good tenants by allowing them more time to move out.
This person says that no matter what, the renters are being unreasonable.
I feel sorry for them, a bit.
But that doesn’t mean OP is wrong or should have handled things differently.