Can I cancel my letting agents contract and keep my good tenant?

Can I cancel my letting agents contract and keep my good tenant?

9:05 AM, 5th August 2012, About 9 years ago 71

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Readers Question - How to cancel a letting agents Contract and keep tenantI’ve received an email from Sophie today who wants to cancel her letting agents contract but keep her good tenant. As we have so many professional letting agents reading this forum I’m hoping that we can give Sophie and several other landlords who find this article in an internet search some sound advice. Sophie’s email is below in italics.

Please post your response in the comments section below.

“Hi Mark

I am new to being landlord and engaged a local estate agent to help let my property.  The tenancy agreement is due to expire in the next 2 months and I really like the tenant I have got.

My questions are therefore:

          1, Is it possible to keep the tenant but lose the agent?

          2, If so, what steps do I need to do to ensure this take place?

Thanks in advance for the help.

Sophie”

What advice would you offer to Sophie?

My initial thoughts are:-

a) Read the agents contract, particularly any termination clauses

b) Consider why you want to terminate the contract if the agents have done a good job and sourced a good tenant

c) Are you likely to want to use this agent again?

d) Have you spoken to the agent to explain your situation?

Sophie – perhaps you could answer these questions too as this may alter the advice that readers offer. 



Comments

by Block Rent

13:42 PM, 14th April 2016, About 5 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Mark Alexander" at "16/04/2015 - 09:46":

Hi Mark - what if he's asking us to lie and say we've left? Seems a bit dodgy and I don't want to have to court for someone else.

by Mark Alexander

15:19 PM, 14th April 2016, About 5 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Block Rent" at "14/04/2016 - 13:40":

That sounds very dodgy to me, particularly in respect of the ethics and morality of your landlord.

I don't think you would be breaking any laws if you went along with his plans but it would certainly be immoral.

I don't much like your landlord based on suggestion but there is often two sides to every story so I don't want to be too judgemental.
.

by Block Rent

18:04 PM, 14th April 2016, About 5 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Mark Alexander" at "14/04/2016 - 15:19":

Thanks Mark, I pretty much made my mind up to say no to lying but if he get's out of his contract with them in an above board manner then I don't have a problem staying on - do you think it's realistic to think he'll be able to negotiate out of the contract or a lower rate? I've spent a lot of time reading forums and it does feel like LL can get out of their contracts or at least reduce the amount. Guess I just want to have all my ducks in a row before I talk to him next, Thanks for your reply btw! much appreciated.

by Mark Alexander

20:29 PM, 14th April 2016, About 5 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Block Rent" at "14/04/2016 - 18:04":

It is not realistic to offer advice in the absence of all the facts.

Maybe you could also invite your landlord to comment here so that we can attempt to help you both?
.

by Scott Blackledge

20:37 PM, 13th December 2016, About 5 years ago

Hi,

I came across this blog as I want to swap letting agents (I do not know enough to do this properly myself).

I want to swap due to the poor service that I have received from my agent (not getting back to me, not conducting the number of inspections agreed, not engaging a plumber to fix a leak that lead to further damage and failing to provide me with a tenancy agreement).

The tenant also contacted me over social media as they too were not getting a response from the agent.

I gave the Agent more than 2 months notice but they have informed me that they are entitled to continue charging me and I can not swap Agents while the tenant introduced by the Agency is still in occupation (a fact set out in their Owners Application Form).

They have told me that the only thing I can do it to evict the tenant but I don't want to evict someone who has paid rent on time and, as far as I can see, hasn't done anything other than receive a poor service from the Agent.

Do I have any other options other than evicting the Tenants?

Thanks for the advice
Scott

by Chris Sheldon

21:17 PM, 13th December 2016, About 5 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Scott Blackledge" at "13/12/2016 - 20:37":

Hi Scott,

There are a couple of points you've made which may allow you to leave your agent subject to the terms of business you signed with them at the outset.

In there terms of business if they have stated the inspection frequency and have not adhered to this without any reasonable explanation then there is a breach of contract immediately. Inspections are very important to ensure that your property is being looked after by the tenant and to ensure that that there are no issues to the fabric of the building or its fixtures and fittings which could cause issue in the future.

If they haven't sent a plumber to fix a leak which has resulted in additional damage payable by yourself any they have not compensated you for this then this is another breach of contract.

I personally would make these points to them and suggest you are contemplating reporting them to the property ombudsman (they will have to provide you details of the clients complaints procedure as part of being a member of the ombudsman) and this will provide you with more leverage to leave them and you may find that they would rather keep a clean record with the ombudsman than enter internal litigation.

I hope this helps and if you would like to discuss this further or have any questions at all then please do feel free to contact me.

All the best

Chris

by Scott Blackledge

6:21 AM, 14th December 2016, About 5 years ago

Hi Chris,

Thank you for the response.

The contract says frequent inspections. I started with a polite email and have asked for the Ombudsmen details and they told me that they are allowed a two week period to look into it. They still haven't provided me with the ombudsmen details.

During that two week time the tenant contacted me directly and made me aware that the leak had caused the floor to be damaged and the tenant replaced the floor. I raised the new floor with the agent(it wasn't like for like and the agent knew but never told me about it - naturally I was really angry). The agent would not let me view the property to see what had happened, but the Tenant invited me round so I went to see and take photos.

The response for the agent today was to evict them to get out the contract or they will pursue me with legal action if I transfer to another agent with the tenant in situ.

There are other issues but I'm keeping to facts I can prove.

My inclination is to proceed with the new agent and see what they do but I'm just worried about the legal action they can take.

Thanks again,
Scott

by Chris Sheldon

11:21 AM, 14th December 2016, About 5 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Scott Blackledge" at "14/12/2016 - 06:21":

Hi Scott,

Frequent inspections is unfortunately pretty vague, but would of course depend on if they have carried out an inspection at all.

That is correct they get two weeks to reply to any official complaint. If they haven't replied i would contact the ombudsman directly and register your complaint with them, the ombudsman will then contact them to discuss the complaint and enquire as to why you haven't received a reply.

In these situations there is usually a middle ground to be found to leave, however if they haven't offered the service you signed up for then i dont feel you should back down.

Whether you wish to leave and risk legal action is your prerogative, and dont believe it would be right for me to comment. If you do leave please give me a call as i'm sure we can offer you the service you need,

Kind Regards

Chris

by Mick Roberts

15:48 PM, 14th April 2017, About 4 years ago

I've got a similar opposite problem.

If Mark suggests I start a new thread, I will.

I've just started with Letting Agent & my new tenant, doesn't want to stop with them. They was a bit terrible to them, not great with me, although Hats off to them, they did seem to locate very good tenant, which did cost me £800 ouch.

Their small print (big company) says months rent + Vat £810 Ouch for me to leave Agent, but retain tenant.
The tenants know I'm good having the tenant before there 12 years & I do think they will be there 10 years +.

So it is my great tenants that wish to pre-empt the move, they do not like the agent, & was definitely leaving this house after their 6 months up. Now they've met me (Had to cause of problems), & my builders etc., They want to stay with me in the same bungalow. But they don't want to deal with the agent. Lots of 20 year old kids running the show, & I just thought I was a Landlord before this debacle-I didn't realise I was good ha ha & experienced.

by JSB

10:57 AM, 16th December 2019, About 2 years ago

My letting agent doesn't turn around my rent in the agreed time frame. It is to the extent that unless I chase up I don't get paid.

Based on this do I have a legitimate reason to remove the agency from the relationship.

How do I go about it?


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