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Landlord selling the house - random house viewings without notice


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Hi,

 

My landlord is selling the house and recently, he has given the keys to the real estate agent for viewings.

 

We have been getting constant viewings without our permission and even sometimes in the mornings where we had to get out of the bed because they were knocking on our room doors.

 

What are our legal rights for these viewings?

 

Thanks

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You should read your tenancy agreement. It will be in that in black and white. Generally it is classed as reasonable notice is needed.

Put yourself in Landlords shoes though - if he wants/needs to sell then he is going to try to show the house to as many people as poss in the hope he gets someone interested in putting in an offer....

I would use this info and start to look around for somewhere else to live anyway.

But try to discuss everything nicely / friendly with the landlord and you will prob find he will go out his way to keep you informed with viewings and offers....

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24 hours written notice

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Are you in England/Wales, does your landlord live OFF the premises and is your rent less than £25k per year?

 

If so, you have exclusive occupation rights until your tenancy ends. No-one (Landlord, Agent, viewers, etc.) has any automatic right of entry except in case of emergency or to perform s11 (Landlord & Tenant Act 1985) repairs. So you are fully entitled to refuse all but reasonable requests.

 

Any reference to compulsory access with 24/48 hours notice in your tenancy agreement would only be enforceable by a court order.

 

If you are in a HMO, where you rent just a specific room, the landlord can show others around the communal areas - but your room is sacred.

 

I am increasingly hearing of tenants, aware of this rule, suggesting that they will allow reasonable viewings in exchange for a small reduction of the rent until the property is sold.

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Snorkerz, I think it is best for the tenant to play fair with the landlord. An email / text can be sent to give 24hr notice, but if the landlord wants to sell, and there is an opt out clause in the TA, then they will sell and the tenant will have to find other accom anyway. Sometimes people think that to go to war immediately is the best way forward, but maybe it is less stressful on everyone if the nice appoach is taken....

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Snorkerz, I think it is best for the tenant to play fair with the landlord. An email / text can be sent to give 24hr notice, but if the landlord wants to sell, and there is an opt out clause in the TA, then they will sell and the tenant will have to find other accom anyway. Sometimes people think that to go to war immediately is the best way forward, but maybe it is less stressful on everyone if the nice appoach is taken....

 

I have no problem with a 'nice' approach, indeed I suggested a compromise in my message. However, I would point out that everything I have said in my post is the tenants rights - there is nothing illegal or immoral there. The tenant has no obligation to help sell the property and if it is sold whilst they still have a tenancy, then the tenant doesn't have to move out at all - the new landlord has to take on the new tenant with all the same rights etc.

Edited by Snorkerz
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Tenant should just check his TA and post up here if there is an opt out clause, then others can advise correctly...rather than speculating on his behalf.

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The OP was refering to the agent and not the tenant. It is the agent that is selling the house that is causing the issue however the tenant could have a polite word with the landlord as the landlord may not know what is happening and I am sure that the landlord does not want to sit with an empty house if the OP decides to move and be paying the full mortgage on it.

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Tenant should just check his TA and post up here if there is an opt out clause, then others can advise correctly...rather than speculating on his behalf.
But this isn't a tenancy-agreement related issue. Whatever is in the AST can not over-rule the law as it stands. Tenant has a right to his 'quiet enjoyment' which means apart from emergencies or s11 related repairs the tenant can refuse access to the areas over which he has a tenancy. Full stop.
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Hi TonyNZ

 

I'd recommend you do as much as possible in writing from now on. I moved out of a flat on Christmas Eve where I had a similar situation e.g. landlord telling the letting agent to give prospective buyers (that she'd found herself) the keys so they could 'let themseelves in and have a look around' without the letting/estate agent charging comission!

 

I'm currently writing a letter before action as she's being very difficult and claiming £150 of the deposit but refusing to tell the tenancy deposit scheme how much is in dispute as she is upset she may be reposessed due to me 'being difficult.' It's useful in this situation being able to refer back to specific letters.

 

Good luck!

 

Chris

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Hi all,

 

Thanks for your replies.

 

I have looked into my contract and it clearly states 24 hour notice except in emergencies.

 

I have written my landlord a very nice, civil email asking him to give notice.

 

If this is still not achieved, what are my rights? Am I allowed to withdraw rent, etc?

 

 

Thanks

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Sorry, you can not withdraw rent.

 

You can take physical action to prevent an invasion of your tenancy by changing the lock to whatever you have a tenancy agreement for (eg - house or room). Your agreement may say you can't, but so long as you re-instate the landlords locks when you go, you can.

 

If you need an excuse - say your contents insurance demands it.

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Since it is my landlord breaking the TA first, despite my emails to him without replies.

 

Am I allowed to move out and not need to give the required 4 week notice while expect my bond to be returned in full?

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No, sorry (again)

 

Can you clarify the following & I'll tell you the minimum notice...

 

When did your tenancy start? How long was the agreement? How often do you pay rent?

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My tenancy started on 15th May 2008

 

It was agreed to be six month minimum contract and rolling thereafter.

 

If the Tenant stays on after the end of the fixed Term, his tenancy will continue but will run from month to month (a ‘periodic tenancy’). This periodic tenancy can be ended by the Tenant giving at least one month’s written notice from the 28th of the current month to the Landlord the notice to expire at the end of a rental period. The periodic tenancy may be superseded by the Landlord at any time by offering the Tenant another fix term contract.

I pay rent on a monthly basis via standing order.

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Okay, if you give notice by 14th Feb, you can leave on 14th March. Miss that notice date and yo're stuck for another month. Leave before 14/3 and you will still be liable for rent until 14th March.

 

The quote you give is confusing because based on a tenancy agreement from 15/5/08 to 14/11/08 my info is correct, yet tha quote mentions the 28th. In this case, my version (which IS right - Housing Act 1988) gets you out earlier.

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Thanks - thought that would be the unfortunate case.

 

It really appears that there is not a lot I can do except locking my personal room doors. (not that will stop people from knocking on my bedroom door while I'm asleep on a Saturday morning).

 

I think I'll follow up my email to him to see his response.

 

Many thanks again.

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Thanks - thought that would be the unfortunate case.

 

It really appears that there is not a lot I can do except locking my personal room doors. (not that will stop people from knocking on my bedroom door while I'm asleep on a Saturday morning).

 

I think I'll follow up my email to him to see his response.

 

Many thanks again.

 

I'm not sure why you can't do as Snookerz suggested and change the lock barrel. It only costs a couple of quid for a new one and it'd keep them out unless they give you notice.

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Yeah, I'll speak to my other flatmates about possibly doing that.

 

In the mean time, I'll just lock my room door to protect my valuables.... who knows what kind of people will walk through our doors nowadays while I'm at work.

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Do you have a Chubb lock ? Lock it and leave the key in the door turned slightly. But a cheap bolt and fix it to the door. Any holes can be repaired when you remove it with filler and paint.

Ash.

 

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  • 7 months later...

Hi

 

I am bumping this old thread up since I have a similar problem. We have given notice on our apartment and move out in two weeks. The landlord has decided to sell and has put the house on the market with a different estate agency to the lettings agency which we rented through and who manage the property.

 

On Monday I receive a call from the lettings agency saying that the sales agency would like to enter the property to take photographs at 9am the following morning and also had a viewing arranged for 6pm and would this be okay. I explained that we were in the process of packing up and that the removalists were due that day, but had already postponed, that there were boxes all over the apartment and that although I had no objection to them entering the premises, it probably wouldn't be appropriate to take photographs, and for the viewings, they might have to overlook the clutter of boxes. The agent asked would it be okay to pass on my contact details to the sales agency so that they could make future arrangements with me directly, which I agreed to.

 

I didn't hear anything further from either agency but when I arrived home on Tuesday evening, it was quite apparent that someone had been in, moved around a good number of my personal possessions, including my underwear, quite evidently in an attempt to take photographs. No attempts had been made to put back items in their original place, however haphazard that might have been, and some items had tossed quite carelesly in my opinion (It should be noted that because we had been packing, absolutely everything had been taken out of cupboards and anything that wasn't to be shipped had been left out on surfaces). All in all it was extremely intrusive.

 

The sales agency called me for the first time this morning and I tore the guy off a strip about this. He put me through to his sales manger, who far from apologising, blamed the letting agency for not providing enough notice and seemed to think that I should expect my items to be moved around. I had left it with the young guy to email me a list of viewing that he wanted (his original purpose of the call) and have heard nothing further. I also called the lettings agency and notified them of the "row".

 

I have come home this evening and strongly suspect that someone has been in the apartment again today - with absolutely no permission. I will send an email to the agencies to ensure that it is clear that they do not have permission from me to enter the apartment for anything other than emergencies.

 

My question is, what recourse do I have if the agents persist in doing this? I am out during the day and cannot control the entry/exit without changing the locks. I move out in 10 days and don't really want the hassle but I feel totally violated by these people coming into my home with their complete lack of respect for my possessions. Also note that the landlord is abroad and we have never had direct contact with him.

 

Any input would be appreciated

Maursh

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Change the locks.

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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