Can an AST be signed retrospectively?

Can an AST be signed retrospectively?

14:49 PM, 26th September 2022, About 2 months ago 11

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Hi, Just going through some tenancies and have come across a tenant who does not have a signed AST on file (or anywhere else).

If we were to sign an AST, dated with the original tenancy start date (01.09.2020) but our signatures dated with today’s date, would there be any implications to this?

EG, if we needed to regain possession using an s21, would the courts have an issue with the different dates?

Our ASTs are 6 months and then we just let the tenancy roll on a monthly basis thereafter, meaning we do not issue new tenancy agreements once the initial 6 months have passed.

I want to avoid starting a new tenancy but understand if this is not possible.

TIA

Meks



Comments

CMS

23:42 PM, 26th September 2022, About 2 months ago

Hi, if the tenancy is unsigned then you are likely going to have an issue if you ever want to serve a section 21 notice (effectively in your current situation you cannot serve one). Getting the tenant to sign a tenancy here is very much in your benefit so far as I can see.

Make sure all of your paperwork is in order as well and address any anomalies. Although it may not be strictly necessary it couldn't hurt to reserve any documents even though you will have served them prior to the tenant taking up occupation under the original unwritten tenancy.

Best, Charles

Amen Bundred

10:16 AM, 27th September 2022, About 2 months ago

Hi without a copy of the tenancy you need to give 3 months notice so the judge can see the 2 months notice has been complied with. I have successfully applied and was granted section 21 for possession by the court by doing this.
The tenancy is an AST unless you signed a different type of tenancy initially.

Peter Fredericks

10:17 AM, 27th September 2022, About 2 months ago

Beware. An unsigned contract might be binding anyway if it can be shown that the key components of offer, acceptance, consideration and intention to create an agreement are in place; and if the contract has been performed by the parties as intended. Suggest you put this one to a lawyer.

CMS

10:33 AM, 27th September 2022, About 2 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Amen Bundred at 27/09/2022 - 10:16
Hi Amen,

That's really interesting. Do you mind giving me some more details please. Normally its not the notice period that is the issue its that, as you know, the section 21 has to expire after the fixed term of the tenancy ends and without a signed copy of the tenancy the end of the fixed term is uncertain.

In your situation did you provide a copy of the draft AST and sign a statement confirming that was a true copy of what was executed at the time the tenant took up occupation?

Hope you don't mind me asking. Best, Charles

Judith Wordsworth

10:44 AM, 27th September 2022, About 2 months ago

What documents did you give the tenant? Importantly the gas safety certificate, How to Rent booklet (or sent by email) and EPC.
Have they been paying rent? An agreed rent? If so how did you agree the rent? Verbally? In writing?
Did you take a deposit and put it on protection within the 30 days AND notify the tenants of the certificate/Deposit Number etc

Mek Kah

11:10 AM, 27th September 2022, About 2 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Judith Wordsworth at 27/09/2022 - 10:44
Tenant has had all documents, how to rent, gas cert. Rent is paid via his work payroll (we have a contract with his employer whereby rent is deducted from salary. An agreement we have in place for many of our tenants and this employer)

Deposit taken correctly etc.

Literally everything else is done, just don't seem to have a signed copy of the AST.

Hes even had a rent increase during his tenure.

So essentially, can I just get him to sign an AST with original start date but signatures with todays date or should I seek legal advice?

Mek Kah

11:11 AM, 27th September 2022, About 2 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Amen Bundred at 27/09/2022 - 10:16
So I would serve a s21 with 3 months notice and then can complete an N5B form for possession as normal?

What documents did you provide where they ask for a copy of the tenancy agreement?

Just an unsigned one?

Amen Bundred

12:15 PM, 27th September 2022, About 2 months ago

Reply to the comment left by CMS at 27/09/2022 - 10:33
Hi the fixed term is 2 months so giving 3 months notice shows that by default the fixed term had been complied with.
As I understand it any AST granted since 1989 where documents are unavailable can comply with section 21 rule on this basis.

Richie

22:45 PM, 27th September 2022, About 2 months ago

Just sign and date with the original AST date or just sign with no date, The date is in the AST.

Chris Bradley

23:10 PM, 27th September 2022, About 2 months ago

As a written tenancy agreement is best practice but not a legal requirement, does it matter?

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