Landlord Wants AST Renewal After AST>SPT Transition

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    Landlord Wants AST Renewal After AST>SPT Transition

    Hi folks, I wonder if anybody else has found themselves in this position or can advise with regard to my situation. Here's the summary of events thus far:

    19/09/17 - I (as the tenant) sign a 6 month AST contract.
    03/01/18 - Letting agent contacts me to enquire as to my intentions come the end of the 6 month AST.
    04/01/18 - I respond, stating that I wish to continue letting and enquire as to whether the landlord would be amenable to a monthly rolling agreement.
    11/02/18 - Having had no response or further correspondence to my reply on 04/01/18, I telephone the letting agents who inform me that they have been unable to contact the landlord who appears to be abroad. At this time the letting agent advises me that unless the landlord responds before the AST ends, it will become an SPT.
    18/03/18 - AST ends, no contact received from letting agent or landlord.
    19/03/18 - As I understand, I am now renting under an SPT in accordance with all other terms of the original AST.
    01/04/18 - Regular rent payment is made and accepted by the letting agent (no adverse correspondence received).
    04/04/18 - Letting agent notifies me that the landlord does not want an SPT and wishes to enact another 6 month AST.

    Now, my question is this; if I am now in an SPT as a result of the landlord's failure to communicate his desire for the new AST, can he force the new AST upon me and supersede the SPT?

    From my limited understanding it would seem that the SPT must first come to an end by means of:
    - Mutual agreement between tenant and landlord to replace the SPT with a new AST
    - Tenant giving a minimum of 1 month notice to quit
    - Landlord serving an S21 notice with 2 months notice

    Ideally I would like to remain in the SPT, but would concede to accepting a new 6 month AST backdated from the end of the original AST. Any thoughts on the likelihood of either or alternative outcomes would be appreciated!

    #2
    Just say "No, I'm quite happy with how things are, thanks".

    The landlord cannot had prevent the SPT from arising, and cannot now stop it other than by seeking possession of the property through the court. You had a fixed term AST, the fixed term ends, and you remain -> SPT by operation of law.

    You and the landlord are free to agree a new fixed term, in which case it will replace the SPT you're on.

    Landlord serving section 21 notice does not end a tenancy. It merely allows on its expiry the landlord to issue a claim in court for possession.

    There's a good chance the agent is gently or not so gently pushing the landlord towards a renewal because of renewal fees.
    I am not a lawyer, nor am I licensed to provide any regulated advice. None of my posts should be treated as legal or financial advice.

    I do not answer questions through private messages which should be posted publicly on the forum.

    Comment


      #3
      As above:

      You cannot be forced to accept any changes to the existing tenancy (other than rent by s13 notice) or accept any new tenancy. But landlord may evict using s21, although typical timescales even for valid s21 notice 40+ weeks if tenant digs heels in until bailiffs arrive.

      I always let tenancies continue as periodic: (more flexibility for me to evict, more incentive for tenant to comply with tenancy terms).

      Simply thank agent for their kind request but decline. As above, agent probably after fees.

      Further very good advice on shelter website e.g.
      https://england.shelter.org.uk/housi...vate_landlords

      & shelter legal e.g.
      http://england.shelter.org.uk/legal/...hold_tenancies
      I am legally unqualified: If you need to rely on advice check it with a suitable authority - eg a solicitor specialising in landlord/tenant law...

      Comment


        #4
        You could look at getting favourable terms in any new agreement, such as
        - no cost to you (same rent; no fees)
        - 12-month term with tenant break clause (1 month notice ending on last day of rent period) and no landlord break clause: that would give you security of tenure but ability to move if your circumstances change.

        Of course, the agent/landlord does not have to agree to any of your proposals.

        Upside of new agreement: you have security of tenure for the fixed term.
        Downside of new agreement: you are tied in for the fixed term.

        Comment


          #5
          Many thanks to all for your advice, it has certainly helped me understand my rights - a topic on which both agent and landlord seem all to happy to plead ignorance!

          Comment


            #6
            Suspect they know fine well but are not being truthful!
            I am legally unqualified: If you need to rely on advice check it with a suitable authority - eg a solicitor specialising in landlord/tenant law...

            Comment


              #7
              Agents want you to sign a new AST every time so they can get their cut/charge the landlord for their “work”.

              The problem you have is if you refuse to sign the new AST, there’s a good chance that they will issue the s21 to start proceedings to evict you. And although it’ll take time and is dependant on lots of things, you’ll have to go through the worry of it and eventually they will win (unfortunately).

              Comment


                #8
                I agree it is a risk. However, while an agent can serve a s21 on behalf of their landlord, they cannot bring the possession claim.

                Maybe speak to the landlord direct and ask why they want a new fixed term?
                I am not a lawyer, nor am I licensed to provide any regulated advice. None of my posts should be treated as legal or financial advice.

                I do not answer questions through private messages which should be posted publicly on the forum.

                Comment


                  #9
                  And... I've today received an S21 Notice signed by the letting agent. Unfortunately I do not have the landlord's direct contact details. Looks like I'll have to try and negotiate for favourable terms on the renewal, don't really fancy moving all over again!

                  Comment


                    #10
                    If it's not already supplied to you in the tenancy agreement, you can make a written request to the agent for the landlord's name and address until section 1 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985. Criminal offence if no response within 21 days.
                    I am not a lawyer, nor am I licensed to provide any regulated advice. None of my posts should be treated as legal or financial advice.

                    I do not answer questions through private messages which should be posted publicly on the forum.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by yetanothertenant View Post
                      And... I've today received an S21 Notice signed by the letting agent. Unfortunately I do not have the landlord's direct contact details. Looks like I'll have to try and negotiate for favourable terms on the renewal, don't really fancy moving all over again!
                      Many s21s are invalid: Check yours against...
                      https://markprichard.co.uk/content/d...ecker-tool.pdf
                      - if it does appear invalid DON'T TELL agent or landlord. Wait till it gets to court then advise court of problem & get case chucked out, gains you more time.

                      Spend £3 with Land registry & see what name & address are on deeds for owner. If owner is not your named landlord ask agent what the **** is going on. See
                      https://www.gov.uk/search-property-i...-land-registry
                      I am legally unqualified: If you need to rely on advice check it with a suitable authority - eg a solicitor specialising in landlord/tenant law...

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Hate to say I told you so.

                        Its a shady and ***** move by Agents but unfortunately all too common.
                        I really dislike them. They’re all crooks.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          In my experience not all agents are crooks.
                          I am legally unqualified: If you need to rely on advice check it with a suitable authority - eg a solicitor specialising in landlord/tenant law...

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Originally posted by KTC View Post
                            If it's not already supplied to you in the tenancy agreement, you can make a written request to the agent for the landlord's name and address until section 1 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985. Criminal offence if no response within 21 days.
                            Thanks, I shall probably make this request shortly, but I doubt it'll help much. It appears that the landlord is frequently abroad and even the agents have trouble reaching him, which has ultimately been the reason this whole thing started in the first place!

                            If he'd simply responded in time before the end of the AST that we'd either be faced with a new fixed term or an S21, then this nonsense could have been avoided...

                            Originally posted by theartfullodger View Post

                            Many s21s are invalid: Check yours against...
                            https://markprichard.co.uk/content/d...ecker-tool.pdf
                            - if it does appear invalid DON'T TELL agent or landlord. Wait till it gets to court then advise court of problem & get case chucked out, gains you more time.

                            Spend £3 with Land registry & see what name & address are on deeds for owner. If owner is not your named landlord ask agent what the **** is going on. See
                            https://www.gov.uk/search-property-i...-land-registry
                            The agents used the LandlordZONE.co.uk FORM 6A, I assume this is a valid format?

                            The January 2016 How to Rent guide was provided at original AST start, however, the January 2018 How to Rent guide has not been provided at any time. I believe the S21 is therefore INVALID.

                            The S21 requires me to leave after 15/06/18, which is not 2 months notice from the start of the next statutory rent payment period (01/05/18), nor is it aligned to the next notional period from the contractual date (19/04/18). I believe the S21 is therefore INVALID.

                            The Land Registry Title shows the correct landlord’s name, but has his address as the rented property. According to the MSE Forum, this is improper if he has a BTL mortgage, though it may be via a Consent to Let:

                            On those deeds, look under 'Charges' where the name of the lender will be listed and the name and address of the property owner, will be listed too. A buy to let mortgage should show that the mortgage lender has the landlord's address listed at a different address to the property the landlord has let.

                            It's also worthwhile knowing that the landlord is the registered owner so as to avoid any subletting issues. You will then also have the landlord's address should you need to issue any legal action.

                            If the landlord has Consent to Let, they will have a letter of authorisation from their mortgage lender with the dates that consent starts and ends. You can always take a copy of the Consent to Let and ask the lender to verify it. A landlord who has forged a document is likely to be unwilling to give a copy. If they say they have received Consent to Let but are not willing to show this authorisation to you; then you can draw your own conclusion. If you are renting through a letting agent, ask to see proof of the landlord's Consent to Let.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              What was your response to the letting agent on 04/04/18?
                              I don't doubt there are dodgy letting agents but serving a section 21 seems excessive even for one of them.

                              Comment

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