Rights of agent to specify termination conditions

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    Rights of agent to specify termination conditions

    We have been dealing with an agent who has taken over the business of a previous agent. The previous agent had taken over the business of another agent who had taken over from our original agent we. We do not have and have never seen or signed a contract with the latest agent. The tenants we have in our two properties were not “introduced” by the latest agent. The tenants have been in situ for over five years and are good long term tenants. We wish to change agents as we have been unhappy with the way the current agent has let the rents slip below market value and have now increased their management fees by approx 2%. They are asking for 1 months rental and 3 months notice on one property and 2 months notice and 1 months rental on the second property. This would amount to a total of £1050. Can the current agent legally require us to pay this without a current contract? We did have a signed agreement with the 3rd agent dated 2007 for our first property and one dated 2014 which has not been signed from the 3rd agent. Any advice pleas?



    #2
    I think to some extent it depends what "has taken over" means.

    If Virgin Ltd were to purchase Marks and Spencer, that does not mean M&S clients or suppliers could regard their contracts as void. On the other hand if it is a totally different company or agent I think you could be justified in saying that I really would not have contracted with you as you are useless, and I regard the contract as void. The contract is for them to supply a service (unlike say a contract to pay ground rent to a freeholder).

    Even if it was the original agent, on what basis can they increase their fees?

    I would take my chances, walk away and let them sue you. If they are holding your cash, then sue them. I hope you did not let the agents protect the deposit. What you must do now is approach the tenants and say that they should pay you directly from now on.

    Comment


      #3
      The contract you currently have is probably the one last sgned.

      When asked by an agent to pay something ask: Where does it say that?

      Comment


        #4
        If the second contract was sent to you before the agent signed up the second tenant, and the agent found the second tenant and you paid them the fees referenced in the unsigned contract, that one might be valid as well.

        If it was sent to you after the second tenant was in place, it's probably irrelevant.
        When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
        Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

        Comment

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