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My son in law rented out his property before he left to live abroad.


He used an Assured Shorthold Tenancy agreement and the term as set out in that agreement was:


a duration of 6 months (Initial Term) followed by a period of 12 months (subject to inspection) (The Term) commencing on xx July 2009 Ending on xx January 2011"


This Agreement will then run on a year by year renewal basis, subject to satisfactory inspection, until such time as either party terminates this Agreement under Section 9 of the Agreement.




9.1 The Landlord may end this Agreement by giving the Tenant at least two calendar months written notice in accordance with Section 21 of the Housing Act 1988, requiring possession of the Property on a date specified in the notice.

Service of such notice will be in accordance with the provisions of S1.96 of the Law of Property Act 1925 and will either be given to you at the Commencement, or will be hand delivered to the Property by the Landlord or his agent. If the Landlord is aware that you have moved to another address, he will also send a copy of the notice to that address by first class post. This notice can be served at any time but possession cannot be recovered by the Landlord until the end of the fixed term or before 6 months has lapsed from the Commencement, whichever is the later. If the Tenant gives up possession of the Property before the date specified in the notice, the Agreement ends on the date specified in the notice unless you are leaving earlier in accordance with the terms of your termination notice. Upon expiry of the Landlords notice, he may make a claim to the court for recovery of possession of the Property.

9.1.2 The Landlord may end this Agreement if the Tenant forfeits and breaches any term of this Agreement.

This includes the Tenant: not paying rent for more than 14 days after it Is legally due (whether formally demanded or not); or his representative supplying references which were false or misleading; breaching any term of this Agreement; leaving the Property empty for more than 28 days (without permission) or it seems that he has abandoned the Property; the Tenant becomes bankrupt, their belongings are seized by bailiffs, or they enter a voluntary arrangement with the people they owe money to. If any of these things happen the Landlord has the right to enter the Property after the bailiffs evict the Tenant following a court order for possession. The Landlord may start this process by sending you a notice in accordance with the procedure set out in Section 8 of the Housing Act 1988.

9.1.3 If applicable, the Landlord may also end this agreement under Grounds 1 or 2 under Section 8.

If applicable the Landlord gives the Tenant notice that at some time before the start of this tenancy, the Landlord lived in the Property as his only or main home, and may need possession under Ground 1 of the Housing Act 1988; and there is a mortgage on the Property which, if not paid, may result in repossession under Ground 2 of the Housing Act 1988. If the Landlord wants to use either Ground, he will start the procedure by serving you with a Section 8 Housing Act 1988 notice. That notice is for two months and he cannot apply for a court hearing until after the two months have passed.

9.2 The Tenant may end this Agreement by giving the Landlord at least one month notice In writing that he will give up possession of the Property on a date specified in the notice.

The notice must expire at the end of a rental period. The notice may be given at any time but cannot expire before the end of the Explry of this Agreement. If the Tenant stays beyond the end of the fixed term, a new tenancy will arise that will run from month to month or week to week. If you give up possession on a date earlier than the date specified in the notice, the tenancy will end on the date specified in the notice. The notice must be sent by first class recorded delivery or handed to the Landlord.

9.3 If the Tenant is the sole Agreement holder and they die, this Agreement ends one month after his death or, if earlier, when the Landlord is given notice of the Tenant’s death by authorized persons. Only the Tenant, a person authorized by the Tenant in writing or, if he is dead, his personal representative can give notice to end this Agreement.


His tenants now want to give notice to leave the property at the end of January 2010, are they able to do so without any penalty?

Edited by alanhay

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This to me is written rather strangely.


You have "initial term" and then "The Term"...


It alludes that there is the possibility of a 6 mo. break clause.


I think this may be one of those strangely written ones that it will be dificult to hold up in court because it exudes a sense of ambiguity.


Especially when the terms in the sections below refer to a fixed term.


I'll leave this one up to the experts, but just from a knowledgeable lay person's point of view here I would say that the T's probably are able to end it in Jan. 2010, at the end of the "initial term" as long as they have given sufficient notice, which it seems they have since this is November.

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You cannot have two contracts running at the same time. So, going by the original contract they can indeed leave in January 2010. The new term hasn't commenced and as they have served notice within the original term of lease, they can leave.

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They can indeed leave at the end of a fixed 6 months term, and they dont have to give any notice at all, so its nice of them to give this much!

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