Abandonment and repossession of property policy

This policy relates to how we aim to re-let properties as quickly as possible in order to minimise rent loss resulting from abandoned properties.


This policy is applied using the following principles:

  • to determine quickly where a property is abandoned
  • to minimise rent loss
  • to minimise the time a property is unoccupied
  • to minimise the cost of storing belongings
  • to respect the rights of tenants and occupants specified within the tenancy agreement


We implement the policy by:

Where our efforts to contact the tenant(s) are unsuccessful an Abandonment Notice will be served on the tenant(s) at the address of the property. This will state:

  • that we believe the property to be unoccupied and that the tenant has abandoned the property and that they have ceased to occupy the property as their only or principal home
  • that the tenant must contact us in writing to confirm that they intend to return to occupy the property within four weeks of serving the notice
  • that, if there is no contact, the tenancy will be ended immediately at the end of the four week period by the serving of a second notice
  • that, if necessary, we have the right to enter the house by force at the end of the four week period
  • that we will take an inventory of all property and possessions within the home (including garden) and remove them to storage if they have any value
  • that we will end the tenancy and the tenant's right to occupy the property 
  • that we will re-let the property in line with Horizon's Allocations policy


We will ensure we meet our statutory obligations under the terms of the Housing (Scotland) Act 2001.

This policy was approved by the Horizon Board in June 2015.