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I CANNOT MOVE OUT (apparently)


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I've signed a Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement on the 15th of Feb 06. Before the expire date the company that deal with processing the rent sent me a letter asking me to choose wether I want to vacate the property or I want to renew the contract. I chose to stay and therefore renewed the contract.

I am buying my own property now and I want to move out, I went to the estate agency to give my notice and they said that I have to call the company that deals with the rent. I did so but they told me that, even if the landlady has confirmed that she is happy for you to leave earlier if a new tenant is found by the time you want to move, you are liable for the rent until Feb 08.

I read the contract but it does not say anything about the notice length.

 

Are they taking me for a ride or I am going to loose my deposit?

 

Please help....:eek:

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with this type of tenancy, both parties are usually required to give 2 months written notice.

All help is merely my opinion only - please seek legal advice if you need to as I am only qualified in SEN law.

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I've been thrown here by the apparent confidence of tiglet, but I'm fairly positive that the tenant needs only give 1 rental periods notice(ie 1 months notice, to expire at the end of a rental period)....

7 years in retail customer service

 

Expertise in letting and rental law for 6 years

 

By trade - I'm an IT engineer working in the housing sector.

 

Please note that any posts made by myself are for information only and should not and must not be taken as correct or factual. If in doubt, consult with a solicitor or other person of equal legal standing.

 

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Interesting - last time I rented (it was about 6 years ago now while we were inbetween buying) I was told by the local council it was 2 months eachway.

 

No sarcasm here, but I would believe you over them any day of the week.

All help is merely my opinion only - please seek legal advice if you need to as I am only qualified in SEN law.

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Oh hang on. Sorry I misread your post. When you moved in in Feb 06 did you sign a year contract? In which case they are absolutely correct.

7 years in retail customer service

 

Expertise in letting and rental law for 6 years

 

By trade - I'm an IT engineer working in the housing sector.

 

Please note that any posts made by myself are for information only and should not and must not be taken as correct or factual. If in doubt, consult with a solicitor or other person of equal legal standing.

 

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Hmmmm....this really isnt one of those "oh I can get out on a technicality" points. If you have signed a one year fixed term agreement, that is a fixed term for one year. There really isnt much way to get out of it.

7 years in retail customer service

 

Expertise in letting and rental law for 6 years

 

By trade - I'm an IT engineer working in the housing sector.

 

Please note that any posts made by myself are for information only and should not and must not be taken as correct or factual. If in doubt, consult with a solicitor or other person of equal legal standing.

 

Please click the star if I have helped!!

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yes it was a year contract, but i thought that if you want to move out you can all we had to do is give two months notice. say for instance i sign a contract in feb 06 i stay in that property for the year then renew my contract , say i want to move out for a reason ( ie going back home, etc) do i have to wait all the way for feb next year why cant i give two months notice and thats that why wait for a whole year

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Yes you do. No offence intended here, but I cant see in what other way you can define a "year contract"? If you sign a year contract, surely you see this as a contract to last a year?

 

The short answer is that yes you are liable for the rent until this date.

7 years in retail customer service

 

Expertise in letting and rental law for 6 years

 

By trade - I'm an IT engineer working in the housing sector.

 

Please note that any posts made by myself are for information only and should not and must not be taken as correct or factual. If in doubt, consult with a solicitor or other person of equal legal standing.

 

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to make matters worst my friend as the same contract with them and she only just renew her contract on 04/11/07 but since then had found a property and have given them notice but they told are it ok she can move in january( so thats givening them two months notice) our contract is the same word for word

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In that case they have granted her leeway, over and above what they are obliged to do. This does not mean that they should give you the same leeway.

7 years in retail customer service

 

Expertise in letting and rental law for 6 years

 

By trade - I'm an IT engineer working in the housing sector.

 

Please note that any posts made by myself are for information only and should not and must not be taken as correct or factual. If in doubt, consult with a solicitor or other person of equal legal standing.

 

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The 2 months is irrelevant. The fact is you are in a year long fixed term contract.

7 years in retail customer service

 

Expertise in letting and rental law for 6 years

 

By trade - I'm an IT engineer working in the housing sector.

 

Please note that any posts made by myself are for information only and should not and must not be taken as correct or factual. If in doubt, consult with a solicitor or other person of equal legal standing.

 

Please click the star if I have helped!!

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Thats correct.

7 years in retail customer service

 

Expertise in letting and rental law for 6 years

 

By trade - I'm an IT engineer working in the housing sector.

 

Please note that any posts made by myself are for information only and should not and must not be taken as correct or factual. If in doubt, consult with a solicitor or other person of equal legal standing.

 

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With all due respect, you act as if you are so hard done by here. Not really. You signed up for a contract, and there is nothing wrong with the landlord, legally or morally, expecting you to keep to that contract. If you thought that you would only stay 9 months, you should have signed a 9 month contract, or 6 month contract, or whatever. You cannot sign a one year contract for security of tenure, therefore expecting the landlord not to evict, and on the other end expect that you can leave whenever you wish.

7 years in retail customer service

 

Expertise in letting and rental law for 6 years

 

By trade - I'm an IT engineer working in the housing sector.

 

Please note that any posts made by myself are for information only and should not and must not be taken as correct or factual. If in doubt, consult with a solicitor or other person of equal legal standing.

 

Please click the star if I have helped!!

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All that said, I may have been hasty in saying there is nothing you can do. I shall rip from my post a while ago the options that are available:

 

The simple answer is, no you cannot end the tenancy as such early. However, there are still several options available to you, I shall attempt to detail them below(in order I would do them):

 

- Check your AST for a break clause. It is quite possible that in such a long term contract there may well be such a clause, allowing you to give notice during the tenancy. However, this is still unlikely, but definitely worth checking.

 

- Negotiate with the landlord. A landlord may be quite receptive to you just sitting, talking to him, and telling him that you would like to leave if possible. They may also be receptive to a financial settlement to break the contract, a couple of months rent may be amenable.

 

- Give notice and leave. In this situation, you are responsible for the rent still, however the landlord must make every reasonable attempt to find a new tenant, and realistically finding a new tenant should not take any longer than 2 to 3 months - of course depending on the property and the area. I do not think that the notice period would matter, as you are more giving him notice to look for new tenants than giving notice that you are breaking the tenancy and stopping rent payments. But I wait to be corrected on this. However, it is obviously advisable to give as much notice as possible.

 

- Assignment. As long as it is not prohibited in your AST, you have the right to assign your tenancy to someone else. This means that you can find someone else to take over the tenancy from you, and this cannot reasonably be refused. However, I think they have to pass the same credit checks etc as you did.

 

- Sublet. Again, as long as it is not prohibited in your AST(most do prohibit it) you can sublet the property to someone else. NB: it is an unfair term to prohibit both assigment and subletting, so if both are, then you can basically choose either, as the terms are null and void.

 

- Remember that you are only responsible for the rent until a new tenant is installed, and the landlord must make every reasonable effort to mitigate his losses i.e. find a new tenant.

 

 

The important thing to note about the above is that there is recent case law that says the landlord may not have to mitigate his loss. I disagree with the case law in principle, however the "mitigating losses" portion of my above post should be taken with a pinch of salt at best currently.

7 years in retail customer service

 

Expertise in letting and rental law for 6 years

 

By trade - I'm an IT engineer working in the housing sector.

 

Please note that any posts made by myself are for information only and should not and must not be taken as correct or factual. If in doubt, consult with a solicitor or other person of equal legal standing.

 

Please click the star if I have helped!!

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Yes, you were a bit hasty "MR Shed".

Don't get me wrong, I appreciate the fact that you help people in finding answers and everything, but there's no need to be aggressive.

Further more you said: "You cannot sign a one year contract for security of tenure, therefore expecting the landlord not to evict, and on the other end expect that you can leave whenever you wish."

Well this wasn't the case. I did not sign a year contract to be secure but because I had no other option and the contract states that "the landlord may bring the tenancy to an end at any time before the expiry of the term (but not earlier than 6 months from the commencement date) by giving to the tenant not less than 2 months notice..."

Do you still think that there's nothing morally wrong in the fact that he/she can evict me whenever he/she wants but I have to stay here even though I gave my 2 months notice?

This is not fare, I just wanted to know if the law allows this types of contracts, that's all.

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No I think there is nothing morally wrong with it. You signed a contract. You did have an option, you werent held at gunpoint to sign the contract, you could have instead not signed it. The term you have mentioned is unenforceable anyway.

 

I was not aggressive, but being matter of fact. I think it is wrong that you blame your landlord for your own oversight.

7 years in retail customer service

 

Expertise in letting and rental law for 6 years

 

By trade - I'm an IT engineer working in the housing sector.

 

Please note that any posts made by myself are for information only and should not and must not be taken as correct or factual. If in doubt, consult with a solicitor or other person of equal legal standing.

 

Please click the star if I have helped!!

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Thanks for your opinion but you don't know me so you don't know how my circumstances were when I signed that contract either. No, no one was pointing a gun at me but for personal reasons I had to move quickly.

Anyway, as I said before, that's your opinon. Pity you're the only one posting in this thread, I'd really like to hear other people views as well.

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