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Landlord now saying my tenancy is 12 months not 6! Help please

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In this instance, it goes in your favour, as the default position would be for a 6 month tenancy, which the documentation you have, and your version of the verbal agreement matches. So, you have a 6 month tenancy. The LL/LA would probably not waste time chasing after you without concrete evidence that you agreed to a 12 month term, because as experienced landlord/letting agent, they'd know it wouldn't be worth the cost of risking a court finding in your favour (which they probably would).

 

 

You are not responsible for the council tax once you move. Write, by recorded delivery, to the local authority council tax department and inform them that your tenancy is up and you have moved out and provide the date. Keep a copy of the letter.

 

If you haven't paid your rent, pay it. The deposit is for damages to the flat, and you cannot use it to defray the cost of rent unless the LL agrees to this. It will be easy to claim your deposit back, and the 12 months indicated on the protection certificate is largely immaterial once you inform them that the tenancy is over and the 12 month protection was an error on the LL's part - provide them with your paperwork to prove the 6 month term.

 

This is very useful thank you. Not 100% sure about the deposit though; I received a reply from Shelter and they told me that I will have difficulty getting my deposit back if the LL doesn't agree with the minimum term. I have emailed the LL again to say that I've moved out & the property is clean & empty and that I have signed paperwork stating 6 months. I've asked them to send me what they have on file for the property. I think that by law if they do have a TA then I should have a copy too.


:whoo:Officially debt free October 2011 after 10 years 11 months :whoo:

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Hmmm...yes I agree site team members should be seeking to provide constructive TLA-free* help in a friendly manner even if they think a poster has done something silly or careless.

 

And, you never said you signed a legally binding contract so this bit was both acerbic and wrong:

 

Another T who signs a legally binding Contract without first reading/checking.

 

Site team members are just normal humans. I don't think there is a qualification requirement.

 

*TLA - Three Letter Acronym :-)

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This is very useful thank you. Not 100% sure about the deposit though; I received a reply from Shelter and they told me that I will have difficulty getting my deposit back if the LL doesn't agree with the minimum term. I have emailed the LL again to say that I've moved out & the property is clean & empty and that I have signed paperwork stating 6 months. I've asked them to send me what they have on file for the property. I think that by law if they do have a TA then I should have a copy too.

 

Stop right there!

Did you leave the property without having the LL or LA around to do a final check???

If the answer is yes you will find a long list of made up damage to screw your deposit.

If the property is still empty ask the LA or LL to do a final inspection together, however, now that they have the keys, they probably won't do that.

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Stop right there!

Did you leave the property without having the LL or LA around to do a final check???

If the answer is yes you will find a long list of made up damage to screw your deposit.

If the property is still empty ask the LA or LL to do a final inspection together, however, now that they have the keys, they probably won't do that.

 

Yes I did but I had to fly abroad at short notice.. the LL and LA were both shut for the weekend and no answer to phone calls. I tried to get in touch to arrange handing the key over but couldn't. There was absolutely no choice I had to go straight away. I could have flown back just to do the handover but the LA has assured me that they will find new tenants.

 

There was no itinerary when I moved in and no tenancy agreement so I don't believe they can deduct anything. I doubt they'll trash the place, and even if they do I took very detailed before & after photos, plus there is a huge demand for property in that area and I don't think they'd waste their time when they could very easily get new tenants.


:whoo:Officially debt free October 2011 after 10 years 11 months :whoo:

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Yes I did but I had to fly abroad at short notice.. the LL and LA were both shut for the weekend and no answer to phone calls. I tried to get in touch to arrange handing the key over but couldn't. There was absolutely no choice I had to go straight away. I could have flown back just to do the handover but the LA has assured me that they will find new tenants.

 

There was no itinerary when I moved in and no tenancy agreement so I don't believe they can deduct anything. I doubt they'll trash the place, and even if they do I took very detailed before & after photos, plus there is a huge demand for property in that area and I don't think they'd waste their time when they could very easily get new tenants.

 

The before and after photos will probably save the day, well done

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Date stamped in/out photo's should assist OP in any proposed deposit deductions for alleged T damage, but nothing else.

When I mention 'vacating' I am referring to AST, not property. In this case, it would appear OP made no attempt to return keys (implied surrender), and there is no case Law suggesting T was legally .vacated

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it would appear OP made no attempt to return keys (implied surrender), and there is no case Law suggesting T was legally .vacated

 

The property was vacated 2 months before the end of the tenancy. The tenant has said in passing that s/he was unable to contact the agent. S/he has not said that s/he has never handed back the keys. The agency have apparently accepted that it was vacated as they are talking about re-letting it.

 

This is entirely different to vacating on the last day without telling the agent or returning the key, and the agent thereby being in a position to demand further rent because a periodic tenancy has begun.

 

The comment is either designed to wind up the original poster and justify the initial "acerbic" comment, or is assuming a worst case scenario and criticising the poster without seeking further clarity.

The original poster has already said that s/he finds an "acerbic" approach by a "site team member" to be unhelpful.

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I did try to return the keys but couldn't get in contact with either LA or LL. In the end I left them in a safe place and then let the LA know where they were as they had said they would seek new tenants. With no TA I didn't know who I should be giving them to which is why I didn't post them to either office.

 

I've just seen that OFT has guidelines for landlords that state a tenancy agreement should be given to a tenant before the date the keys are handed over, and before a deposit for the property is taken. Is this ever enforced, and what happens if a LL doesn't abide by the guidelines? I can't remember the last time I had a TA and whether it was provided in advance before the move-in date (I suspect not). Does a TA become less legally-binding if a T is not given time to inspect it? I'd never really thought about it before, but when starting a new job the contract is always posted well in advance of the start date.


:whoo:Officially debt free October 2011 after 10 years 11 months :whoo:

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I did try to return the keys but couldn't get in contact with either LA or LL. In the end I left them in a safe place and then let the LA know where they were as they had said they would seek new tenants. With no TA I didn't know who I should be giving them to which is why I didn't post them to either office.

 

I've just seen that OFT has guidelines for landlords that state a tenancy agreement should be given to a tenant before the date the keys are handed over, and before a deposit for the property is taken. Is this ever enforced, and what happens if a LL doesn't abide by the guidelines? I can't remember the last time I had a TA and whether it was provided in advance before the move-in date (I suspect not). Does a TA become less legally-binding if a T is not given time to inspect it? I'd never really thought about it before, but when starting a new job the contract is always posted well in advance of the start date.

 

My view is that if a LL doesn't prepare and signs a TA is either dodgy or very naive.

Personally I email the TA to the tenant a few days before meeting to sign it.

Then at the meeting I go through every point asking if is understood.

Lately I have also audio recorded the meeting to avoid the excuse "I signed without knowing what I was signing".

By doing all of this I protect myself and the tenant, leaving no grey areas.

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There is no legal obligation to have a written tenancy agreement.

 

Guidelines are guidelines, they are not law.

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There is no legal obligation to have a written tenancy agreement.

 

Guidelines are guidelines, they are not law.

 

Very true, but giving your house to a stranger without a written contract can only mean one thing for both parties: Trouble!

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Lately I have also audio recorded the meeting to avoid the excuse "I signed without knowing what I was signing".

By doing all of this I protect myself and the tenant, leaving no grey areas.

 

I was thinking about this and wishing that I'd done the same. Do you tell them that you're recording the conversation? Can it be used as evidence only if both parties were aware they were being recorded?

 

The LA has found a new tenant to move in to my old place, hopefully a couple of days before the start of the next rental period. I am keeping my fingers crossed that the LL will agree to it, as I assume that they won't take rent from both parties for the same month.


:whoo:Officially debt free October 2011 after 10 years 11 months :whoo:

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I was thinking about this and wishing that I'd done the same. Do you tell them that you're recording the conversation? Can it be used as evidence only if both parties were aware they were being recorded?

 

The LA has found a new tenant to move in to my old place, hopefully a couple of days before the start of the next rental period. I am keeping my fingers crossed that the LL will agree to it, as I assume that they won't take rent from both parties for the same month.

 

Yes, I do tell them and give them a copy of the recording.

If they are not trying to screw you they'll have no objection.

Alarm bells should start ringing if one of the parties strongly objects to be recorded: Most likely they're already planning to say that something was or was not said.

At that point I would walk away.

In my experience doing everything above board as a LL restricts drastically the number of potential tenants, but then again, do we want to battle for unpaid rent, damage etc?

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