- Calling Tenancy experts – a bit of help/advice for a friend of mine please :-)
Colleague of mine at work is heading back to Oz at the end of this month. She’s been renting a flat for around 14 months, with a flatmate, originally on a 12 month contract (which ran from 1SEP09-1SEP10). Back in July of this year they received a letter from their agent as per below (all I’ve taken out is the address and tenants name). They signed this and sent it back, no problems. Now the time has come to move on and they have given their one months notice, however the agent is telling them that they’re on a new 12 month lease and cannot break it? They’ve graciously said that if my mate can find a tenant that passes their vetting etc then they may consider allowing them to take on the lease, or they can advertise for a tenant at a charge of £360…
Now, my understanding of this letter is that the agent has clearly advised them that they are now Statutory Periodic Tenants, right? I guess the tricky line is the ‘at the end of the above stated period’, is this what the agent is using to claim a new 12 month lease has been agreed to?
Any and all advice welcomed, my colleague is at her wits end because her flat mate is over in NZ for work and has just advised that she’ll be staying there till April at least, so it’s all been dumped in her lap to sort out, in addition to all the other things she needs to do before going home permanently!Posted 7 years agoTandemJeremyMember
CAB for real advice – on the surface it looks to me like a one month notice required and that is all
nowadays deposits are protected – they cannot wihold it without strong grounds
Get real advice – CAB or local housing advice servce or law centre.
i think the agent is wrong and that she can give a months noticePosted 7 years agohelsMember
Sounds like the agent is an incompetent twit, like most of them.
I suggest a visit to their office, with the contract as above. The have just got their facts wrong, as they probably have with the several hundred other properties they are “managing”.
And it doesn’t matter what your mate has signed, you can’t sign yourself out of your legal rights.Posted 7 years agohoraMember
It looks like an attempt to get hoodwink the tenant into a mobile-phone type contract/mindset.
Beware that the agents may hit your friend with lots of punitive charges (i.e. pick apart the property looking for faults that they can rack up against her to keep the deposit).
I had this in a flat in central Manchester with such charges as ‘£60 to clean the toilet professionally’ (£600 total).
I royally kicked off and promised to visit their offices every lunchtime as I worked nearby and stand there waiting for prospective customers to come in or on the pavement and create conversation. Thankfully it didn’t to that and they slashed the total ‘cleaning charges & damages to £130.Posted 7 years agoHoratioHufnagelMember
When my contract expired the letting agent tried to make me sign another 12 month contract at a cost of 90 quid or something ridiculous.
I went straight down there and told them to get stuffed. You don’t need to renew as it will revert to statutory periodic automatically.
Looks like a similar thing has happened above. I’d argue the contract was entirely unecessary, which might be quite tricky.Posted 7 years agofettlingMember
Looks like a poorly worded Statutory Periodic Tenancy (SPT) to me.
Key things being “therefore the terms of the present notice and lease will continue”
also the “or one month by yourself”
A new contract seems unecessary if it is simply a continuation of the previous agreement, and frowned upon by the law.
The new agreement clearly states a one month notice period for the tenant and 2 months for the landlord. This is standard for SPT.
Agent is wrong and as others have said deposits are now protected and any disputes over them are handled by a 3rd party. This has been law for a while now.Posted 7 years agoSidneyMember
Miss Sid and I were in a statutory periodic, which is what that looks like to me.
If so then then their notice is next rent day plus a month. So give notice day before rent day and you wait ~4 wks, give it day after then its more like 8 wks.
This caught us out and we had a 7 week wait which we managed to reduce by getting some replacement tennants in.
As others have said looks like the letting agent knows arse all. Challenge the 12 months.Posted 7 years agoSidneyMember
IanMunro – Having re-read it I to wonder if they have tried to say the they will move onto a SPT after the next 12 month contract.
The word in the sentence “you will become Statutory Periodic Tenants” worries me.
If they have then it’s a poorly worded contract as it is not very precise.
We moved onto a STP because when we recieved a new contract we didn’t want to pay a new fee. To that end I don’t think we signed a new contract which the friend of the OP have done.
Get help from CAB.Posted 7 years agomidlifecrashesSubscriber
Very poorly worded letter. I read it as an attempt to establish a second 12 month AST, with similar terms to the previous one. After the second 12 month AST, in the absence of a further agreement, there would be a reversion to periodic tenancy. The big ambiguities arise from the statement of notice periods which would be correct for a periodic, but wrong for the 12 month AST. This is stated after the sentence about becoming a periodic tenancy, but since there is no detail given about notice during the AST, it is easy to read it as applying to that. As a landlord, I’d much rather see a freshly written tenancy agreement signed by all parties if that’s what I meant, but to me the first sentence giving dates and limits is the important one, so a new assured shorthold tenancy should be implied for those dates. It is so badly phrased as to invite misinterpretation though, so I’d feel the tenant justified if they chose to challenge it. Might be worth contacting the landlord to see what their intention was and to give them a heads up regarding how shoddy the agent was.Posted 7 years agopslingSubscriber
IMO what the landlord is saying there is that he is offering the tenant a further 12 months tenancy [although he refers to it erroneously / confusingly as a SPT] from 1st Sept. 2010.
This offer of the further 12 month tenancy was determinable on agreement in writing within 2 months of date of offer [July] by the landlord and 1 month by tenant [which she has done].
My understanding is that the 2 month / 1 month referred to is not the notice period, it was the time given to agree the offer of the 12 month tenancy [the offer having been made in July and agreed to since].
Whether it is legal or not is another matter – seek legal advice!Posted 7 years agoPhilbyMember
Might be worth contacting Shelter or your local CAB.
Also http://england.shelter.org.uk/get_advice/renting_and_leasehold/private_tenancies may be useful.
HTHPosted 7 years ago
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