by Ed Atkinson
8:11 AM, 28th January 2014, About 10 years ago 26
What are the best tactics here? I have found some great new tenants who want to move into one of my properties ASAP. They are currently on a Periodic Tenancy paying monthly, so by my reckoning, they should be free vacate their existing home when the next full period ends on 10th March, subject to giving notice. However, their letting agent claims they should give two months notice.
The new tenants are a lovely family who turn out to be friends of friends twice over. They are Polish and I am worried that the Agent will try to bully them on this.
While their Tenancy Agreement has the text: “… the Tenant must give at least 2 calendar months’ notice ..” (Sect 9.i), it later clarifies: “… the Tenancy will become a Statutory Periodic Tenancy whereby the notice period will be in accordance with legislation.” (Sect 9.ii). There is no dispute that the tenants are currently on a Periodic Tenancy. The NLA has this information on the issue:
“Termination of a periodic tenancy by the tenant”
“If fixed term of the tenancy has come to an end and the tenancy has been allowed to run on as a periodic tenancy and the tenant wants to leave he must provide notice in writing of the intention to leave.
The tenant must give at least four weeks notice where rent is paid on a weekly basis and at least a month’s notice where rent is paid on a monthly basis, expiring at the end of a period of the tenancy.”
“How much notice do you have to give?”
“If your agreement is ‘periodic’ (that is, it rolls from week to week or month to month) you normally have to give at least 1 months’ notice to end it, or 4 weeks if you have a weekly tenancy.
The only exceptions to this are if: ..” (none apply in this case and anyway the exceptions shorten the notice)
The tenant has a letter from the agent from a couple of years ago informing them of the swap to a Periodic Tenancy and claiming “As stated in your Tenancy Agreement you must give two months notice to terminate ..” and then after listing all the charges they extract for doing nothing much the Agent’s letter ends “Please sign the copy of this letter as confirmation that you are in agreement ..” Their signed copy is on file and being used against them.
We have a few days before the next rent period starts to sort this out. The tenant will get worried about a legal battle and so we need suitable tactics to get the Agent to back down.
Who could we say we could report them to?
Is a threat of negative local publicity too dangerous?
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