How do I enforce a 'no parties' clause with my tenants?

Question from Ken Cochrane updated on 9th October 2008:

My tenants had a party last weekend and the police attended twice. The tenants upstairs have complained, as have 2 neighbours. There is also some damage to the property. What recourse do I have to prevent this happening again (they are on a fixed tenancy, and one of the conditions of the Tenancy Agreement is no parties).

Our expert Jeff Montgomery responded:

Although conditions in tenancy agreements such as ’no parties’ may be unenforceable because they’re too general, tenants have a responsibility not to interfere with their neighbours’ peace, comfort and privacy. If a tenant has breached this, you can give them a letter reminding them of their responsibilities, asking them to stop their behaviour and make sure further incidents do not occur. If the problems continue, you could apply to the Tenancy Tribunal to resolve the matter. If you want the Tenancy Tribunal to terminate the tenancy, you will need to show that the problems are serious enough that the Tribunal would be justified in ending the tenancy. The tenants are responsible for any damage they or any invited guests cause intentionally or carelessly. If the tenants or their invited guests have intentionally or carelessly damaged the premises, you could give the tenants a 10 working days’ notice requiring them to fix the damage. If they don’t fix the damage, you could apply to the Tenancy Tribunal. If you would like to further discuss your situation, or you need more advice and information about making a Tenancy Tribunal application, I recommend you call the Department of Building and Housing on 0800 TENANCY (0800 836 262).

The Department of Building and Housing provides information and guidance on building law and compliance, services including weathertight homes, and advice for tenants and landlords.

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