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Property Hawk

Filling out a N5B form

It is possible to get a company to fill out your N5B.  This will cost anything upwards of £300.  If you are luckily enough to rent out a property in Mayfair, this could easily be a couple of thousand quid.

Here’s a quick guide to filling out the form and potentially saving you a few hundred quid into the bargain.

Firstly what is a N5B form?

The N5B form is needed for making a claim for possession of a rental property (accelerated procedure) (assured shorthold tenancy) in the County Court.  It’s the form required following the use of a Section 21 Notice for non fault based possession. We provide a free Section 21 Notice for our users.



Where do I get a N5B form from?


The N5B form is available to download from the HM court service

This is my account of my trials and tribulations of filling out the form and getting it successfully submitted to the county court.

The form itself comes in a downloadable PDF format.

The first question is how many will I need?


You will need a minimum of 3 sets one for the Court, one that is sent to the tenant and one that is returned to you.  If you have more tenants then you will need an additional N5B for each of the additional tenants. It’s always advisable when preparing the forms to do a spare copy.  Therefore, I’d suggest a minimum of 4.

Now, the question arises on how you create your 4 copies. There are various options.  You could hand write all 4 copies of your N5B - probably not advisable unless you want severe wrist cramp.  The other option is to print off the PDF and then fill it in by hand and then photo copy.  It is also possible to fill the PDF online and then print it 4 times.  All are acceptable with the Courts but I would advise doing the latter because it’s the quickest and clearest.

The N5B form itself is not a monster of a form. It has 4 pages that need filling in by the landlord.  There is a single back page that gives notes to the defendant (the tenant).  The thing that makes it a ‘challenge’ is the numerous sentences and boxes that need crossing out.  Remember, this will go before the Judge. They are trained at pin pointing legal inaccuracies and will show no mercy.  Get something even slightly wrong and it will be slung out immediately and sent back to you, often without explanation.  For you then to work out what bit you have not got right.  Filling out the form is all about the detail.

As well as the form you will need an equal number of accompanying documents such as the tenancy agreement (marked A1), the notice seeking possession (marked C), the proof of service (marked C1).

Make sure that you read and follow the Notes for the claimant carefully.



Filling out page 1 of the N5B


Firstly, you’d think that filling in the claimant (landlords) and the Defendant (s) details would be straight forward. Not so.  I was told by the court clerk that just putting a name for the landlord and tenant is no longer sufficient.  You have to put in reference to their gender ie MR or MISS / MS.  There’s your first potential stumbling block over.

At the top and bottom of the form are several boxes.  A landlord should fill in these as far as possible although some courts will fill them in for you.

In the top box the address of the County Court should be included.  In the bottom box a landlord should input the name and the address of the tenant.  In the bottom right hand box right the court fee, currently £150 and any solicitor’s costs together with the total amount.
 
You will have to decide whether you will ask the court for the defendant to pay the costs.  Simple if you have a solicitor or are paying somebody else to do the work.  You just put in what you are being charged.  However, more difficult if you are under taking the work yourself.  There is a convention that you can charge your time out at a third of the rate that a trained solicitor would charge.  However, there are issues that a novice landlord will take far longer to prepare the work than an experienced solicitor.  There is a danger that the judge throws out the case if they perceive that your costs are unreasonable.

Page 2

1. This is straight forward in that you just enter the address of the property you are seeking permission of.

2. Question 2  relates to public sector tenancies created by housing trusts and housing associations so it doesn’t concern private landlords

3. Enter in the date of the first tenancy agreement, unless there has been a more recent tenancy agreed.  If there has only been one tenancy then you should delete section 6.

4.  Question 4 simply confirms that the tenancy was made after 28th February 1997 which almost all tenancies will be now.  If more than one tenancy applies then leave the word (first) otherwise cross it out if only one tenancy agreement applies.

5. If Question 4 is relevant which it will be for most landlords then you will need to cross this out.

6. If there has only been one tenancy at the property then again you can cross out para. 6 if not then just leave it in.


Page 3

Almost there now!

7. This is important as you will need to enter in the date that notice was given to your tenant in your section 21 notice.

A copy of the section 21 notice must be attached and marked C.  Remember you will have to say who the notice was served by and documentary proof of service (e.g. witness statement or receipt of recorded delivery)

Remember you will need to get your dates right.

If your property is not a House in Multiple Occupation then you will have to delete the relevant section.

Note section 7 (d) which is there to ensure if a deposit has been taken that you have used one of the approved schemes under the Deposit Protection Scheme (DPS).

8. Section 8 is there for you to add any information that the judge needs to take account of.  Remember that according to section 21 of the Housing Act 1988 “a court shall make an order for possession of a dwelling-house let on an assured shorthold tenancy which is a periodic tenancy if the court is satisfied” on the two grounds that notice was correctly given and 6 months has elapsed.
 
So don’t feel that you need to launch into a diatribe about how terrible the tenants were - you will be just wasting ink and the courts time. 



Comments (24)

Filling Out An N5B
Hi - Very helpful, to a point. The form I have has 13 sections, when including the Statement of Truth, but this only mentions up to 8. Section 7 (d) doesn't exist either. Have things changed since writing this? Thanks.
#1 - Martin S - 03/09/2012 - 14:30
n5b form,q3
Very helpful but question 3 is s bit confusing as it mention two parts regarding the tenancy. There is not a tick box. It only says "both the first tenancy.......property" then it says "or" ....both the first tenancy was made on or after Jan 1989. Am I supposed to cross out the paragraph which does not relate to me?
#2 - sarah - 03/27/2012 - 09:58
My letting agent worries me wit his lack of knowledge
In May last year I put my house with an agent to manage as i was previously uncomfortable with dealing with things myself. I have had trouble from day one with the tennant they put in the property and as of Jan this year i asked them to serve her notice which was done and her date to leave the property was 23rd March. She is still there. Many phone calls from me to the agent and so forth made me realise that they had no idea what to do in this situation, since this time i have been sorting out the n5b with my Sister who is a solicitor. We have both spoken with the agent on many occasions and they still have no idea what they should be doing. Do you think they need to be reported to their governing body or is this a normal practice for a letting agent? and also who should fit the bill for the eviction notice? help please!
#3 - sara Pugh - 04/11/2012 - 16:41
Letting Agent
Sara,
Perhaps you should read the Terms of Business that you signed? It almost certainly says that the Landlord will be responsible for instructing and paying for solictors to undertake legal proceedings. Although most Letting Agents are very knowledgeable, you are now dealing with the courts and Letting Agents are not qualified solicitors. ARLA (the largest professional body representing Letting Agents) reccommends Agents do not complete court forms on behalf of their Landlords.
#4 - Bob - 04/12/2012 - 14:29
Are the instructions still accurate?
I am just wondering, could you add from when this article dates?
I wonder whether the fee is still accurate and whether the form has changed in the meantime?
I seem to have more questions than are mentioned in the text and it is instruction to cross out questions which I think are essential.
For example no date can be entered in question 7. And there is no 7d) on the form I downloaded today from HM cours service...
#5 - mila - 07/02/2012 - 14:11
Tenancy agreements.
I my tenants have been in my prperty for about 3 years, I only have my most recent tenancy agreement (expired on July 22 with S21 notice). I had previous 6 monthly agreements but have nolonger got them. Will it go against me if I only attach the most recent tenancy agreement?
#6 - Alan Baxter - 07/27/2012 - 09:25
N5B
do i need a solicitor's cost's to be added on the form
or can i act for myself and save the cost's
#7 - mota - 02/11/2013 - 23:15
N5b Possesion Form
Can you possibly update the notes for the new form. It is confusing as the form and notes to not make any sense.
#8 - Tony Ranson - 02/13/2013 - 23:10
N5b
Just filed these forms; they are very slightly different to above now, and the issue fee is £175.
The above notes are still very useful, though, thank you, and despite some of the questions being either different or removed, it was still easy to work my way through with the notes.
#9 - Sheila - 04/12/2013 - 14:14
N5B form
My tenant has a fixed term tenancy of 6 months he never piad any rent from the day he moved in so he has been sent a section 8 wereupon he piad a months rent. He is now back to being 2 months in arearers, can I send a N5B form with just a section 8?
#10 - rob bowyer - 04/30/2013 - 13:57
n5b form
my tenant is 3months in arrears with his rent, I served him with a section 8 notice and he has not responded, can i send n5b form with just section 8 as the n5b seems to apply to section 21 (which I did not use)
#11 - Linda - 05/16/2013 - 12:59
N5B
question 3 second part c) a notice in writing, stating that the tenancy was to be an assured horthold tenancy, was served on the defendant. It was served by:
If it was a short hold tenancy does this needs o be filled in? I don't have a seprate notice just the agreement wich states it is a shorthold tenancy agreement.
#12 - richard - 06/19/2013 - 18:04
Hi a lot of the above info is seriously out of date. It may have been accurate but isnt now. I am a lwayer who specialises in housing Law. In my view its cheaper & quicker to instruct a housing lawyer to de both notice & claim form. I have just defeated a local landlord assoc who issued possesion procedings last November! If they had followed correct procedure tenant would have been out in March. Tenant still there! Some Landlords get it right, the courts dont always pick up errors, but often the landlord gets away with bad paperwork as tenant doesnt defend.
#13 - mark stokes - 07/06/2013 - 17:22
sending in the forms
How many copies do I sens to the court? Do I send a set directly to the tenant?
I sent the courts one copy and they sent it back to me, stating I had not sent enough copies.
A very helpful site!
#14 - charlotte - 11/10/2013 - 23:09
Questions on filling out a N5B
For specific questions on how to fill out the N5B form please sign up for our forum. We can answer them there.
#15 - chris - 11/19/2013 - 12:17
Section 21 notice expire
Hi can you please explain the below as I given sec 21notice tennant started 3rd oct 13 and notice was given 15th nov to exp 15th jan 2months. I am confused where it as fixed term AST tenancy I do not have to wait for 6 months to expire as it states below 6months elapsed. Am I right in thinking that would be for periodic ... Please help

8. Section 8 is there for you to add any information that the judge needs to take account of. Remember that according to section 21 of the Housing Act 1988 “a court shall make an order for possession of a dwelling-house let on an assured shorthold tenancy which is a periodic tenancy if the court is satisfied” on the two grounds that notice was correctly given and 6 months has elapsed.
#16 - Kam - 12/16/2013 - 19:24
Form N5B
Your advice is out of date. There is a new form from date 8.11 therefore questions are wrong and misleading.
If you do not want to change please delete how to fill complete form N5B section.
it is not right to mislead reader.
THANKS
#17 - naz - 12/27/2013 - 21:47
N5B (2011) help
For the latest N5B(2011) If only one tenancy agreement, do I tick N/A for both in Q4? Q3 Post 27 Feb 1997 applies, do I cross through the whole of the second part of the Q3 (post 15 jan 1989)? Q5 I sevred the notice by hand and otained a signed receipt, do I state this here? Is the Certificate of Service filled in by the court? Thanks in anticipation.
#18 - fred wade - 02/15/2014 - 15:58
N5B (2011) Help!
For the latest N5B (2011). Q3 post 27 Feb 1997 applies, do I cross through the whole of the second part (post 15 Jan 1989)? Q4 If only one tenancy agreement, do I tick N/A for both a) and b)? Q5 I served notice by hand and obtained a signed receipt, do I state this here? Is the Certificate of Service filled in by the court? Thanks in anticipation.
#19 - fred - 02/15/2014 - 16:17
Expiry Date
Hi An AST agreement commenced on 18 November 2013 and ends on 17 May 2014. I want to serve a s21 (1)(b) notice within the fixed term. Does this have be to be served and with the tenant by 17 March 2014? Also on the s.21 Notice where it says expiry date do I put 17 May 2014 (the last day of the agreement) or 18 May 2014 (the day after the agreement has expired)? Thanks
#20 - CJ - 03/09/2014 - 10:20
CERTIFICATE OF SERVISE ON FORM N5B
Please, is it i am the one to fill in the colom under the Certificate of service or the from the court?

Then, how many copy do i need to submit to the court?

Thanks for your help.

Joshua
#21 - Joshua Olasupo - 04/05/2014 - 00:14
N5B question 7
Do I answer this as 'NO' as I have returned the full deposit back to the tenant before issuing Section 21 Notice as my Agent did not place it in the Deposit Scheme as required.
#22 - KAur - 06/19/2014 - 13:03
N5B Issue to Court - Cover Letter?
Do you do a cover letter when sending the packs off to the court or merely just the packs with the N5B forms
#23 - Helen Church - 10/03/2014 - 13:36
N5B Issue to Court - Cover Letter?
Do you do a cover letter when sending the packs off to the court or merely just the packs with the N5B forms
#24 - Helen Church - 10/03/2014 - 13:38
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