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Local authority tenancy issue when downsizing


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Hi,

I am a local authority tenant and was in a 3 bed house.

At the end of last year, my last child moved out and so did my spouse as we are now going through a divorce which meant that I was in the house alone and decided that I needed to downsize not only for myself but to offer the property to a family that needed it.

I registered on the local authority housing bidding site as i was asked to do and I was accepted and given a priority banding as I was downsizing and they were desperate for my house.

I have been extremely lucky and after about 6 weeks was accepted for a new build from a housing association via the housing gateway.

I viewed the property 2 weeks ago and had to sign the tenancy last week when they were doing bulk signups for the houses and that is the day I moved.

In between viewing and sign up, I contacted my current local authority landlord and asked how I give notice as I had been accepted for a property I had bid on and was moving.  The lady told me how to do it online and then said that I needed to give a full weeks notice which wasnt a problem as I had enough time.  (I was also told a weeks notice was what i would need to give by another staff member about a month ago when I phoned up for another housing related question.  I dont have any of this in writing.)

I have now moved, handed back the keys and I am now being told that I need to give 4 weeks notice which I cannot afford.

I hav e spoken to the council again explaining that I was told a week and that to be honest, if I knew they were going to charge me 4 weeks I would not have been able to move and would have stayed in the other house.  I thought I was doing the right thing.

They said that calls are recorded and they asked me when I called in and was told a week and they would listen to the telephone conversation and if it was correct what I was told, they would see what they could do to reduce the notice period.

They have now emailed me back and said that they have listened to the conversation and the lady said 4 weeks notice and I am liable for 4 weeks rent.  Now I may well of misheard her when I thought she said a full weeks notice she may have said 4 weeks notice but I am sure she said a full weeks notice and i was told a week by another member of staff a few weeks ago.

I have emailed her back and said that I may of misheard but I would like to listen to the phone recording myself.  As yet they havent responded.

I think its unreasonable for them to make me give 4 weeks when I had to sign the new tenancy with little notice or loose the property.  And it was all done through their gateway, and they will have a tenant in there pretty much straight away getting rent from them.

I am on a very low income, I am on my own, I have serious medical issues and I am really getting myself stressed out over this.

Any advice would be so appreciated.  Can I insist they let me listed to the recording?

RH

 

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Id start by submitting a formal Subject Access Request to the local authority. State that you want all data including telephone recordings.

 

They'll have a month to provide you with the data and recordings then

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