Landlord wants to sell - how is our tenancy affected?

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    Landlord wants to sell - how is our tenancy affected?

    I hope I am not in breach of board etiquette by posing a question on my first visit.

    I and my partner current rent a 2 bed semi through a private landlord. and live their with our 13 month old son.

    No agencies are involved at all.

    We signed a 6 month rolling contract in June 2007 which has now rolled onto a second 6 months. Our landlord has now informed us that due to the current mortgage market he wants to sell the property and will give us our 2 months notice once sale is agreed.

    This is obviously devastating to us as a young family who have made this property our home but we accept that we will inevitably have to move out.

    Our problem being that all our spare cash is tied up in the £850 deposit held by the landlord. We cannot physically afford to move out as we cannot pay a deposit on a new property until we have got our deposit back from the landlord.

    Since sending us the letter we have contacted him asking if it is possible to get our deposit back before we leave and he is being very difficult about the situation. not often answering our calls and often being very evasive about the situation.

    I was wondering what our rights are as tenants?

    * The landlords Estate Agent are constantly ringing to arrange viewings at times when we are not around (The first of which is today at 5pm)

    We are obviously not happy about this but are under the impression that we cannot stop it. Is this the case or can we legally refuse entry?

    * Can the landlord actually sell before the follow on 6 month period is up?

    * Is there any advice you can offer on how to approach the landlord about getting back our deposit before we vacate? We literally cannot move if this dosen't happen and are scared we may end up on the streets.

    We are a young family and are very worried about the situation we have no family who live nearby that we can stay with.

    What do we do?

    #2
    1. As soon as the first six months expired, you became- and always then remain- at risk of L serving a s.21 Notice. This is not fault-based.
    2. L could sell the property subject to your continuing tenancy. He does not need vacant possession to complete a sale. Perhaps a purchaser would be delighted with a ready-made BTL and excellent tenants already installed!
    JEFFREY SHAW, solicitor [and Topic Expert], Nether Edge Law*
    1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
    2. Telephone advice: see http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=34638.
    3. For paid advice about conveyancing/leaseholds/L&T, contact me* and become a private client.
    4. *- Contact info: click on my name (blue-highlight link).

    Comment


      #3
      Originally posted by jeffrey View Post
      1. As soon as the first six months expired, you became- and always then remain- at risk of L serving a s.21 Notice. This is not fault-based.
      Sorry for my continuing Naiveity,

      What is an s.21 notice?

      I believe we are in the driving seat with regards to him sellign the property as from lookign through this site I think we can refuse entry for viewings which would make it more difficult to sell the property.

      Although unethical and the last thing we want to do....Is it worth telling the landlord if he dosen't give us back our deposit early we will sit in the property for 8 weeks and save what would have been paid on rent to use as a deposit for a new property and then let him issue an eviction notice against us?

      Comment


        #4
        Notice under section 21 of Housing Act 1988. Scan for details using FAQ or macro search facilities at top of LZ screen.
        JEFFREY SHAW, solicitor [and Topic Expert], Nether Edge Law*
        1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
        2. Telephone advice: see http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=34638.
        3. For paid advice about conveyancing/leaseholds/L&T, contact me* and become a private client.
        4. *- Contact info: click on my name (blue-highlight link).

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by TerryCarter View Post
          Sorry for my continuing Naiveity,

          What is an s.21 notice?

          I believe we are in the driving seat with regards to him sellign the property as from lookign through this site I think we can refuse entry for viewings which would make it more difficult to sell the property.

          Although unethical and the last thing we want to do....Is it worth telling the landlord if he dosen't give us back our deposit early we will sit in the property for 8 weeks and save what would have been paid on rent to use as a deposit for a new property and then let him issue an eviction notice against us?
          Your deposit was paid for the term of the AST. You can't expect your LL to return it to you until such a time as the tenancy has ended.

          Did he protect the deposit in an approved scheme?

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by jeffrey View Post
            Notice under section 21 of Housing Act 1988. Scan for details using FAQ or macro search facilities at top of LZ screen.
            Thanks for that, I feel I have a better understanding of the proceedure the landlord will follow.

            Can We stop the Viewings taking place? We hardly want strangers coming into our home when we are not there or when we are feeding or bathing our son or even when he's gone to bed for the night.?

            Is there any way to persuade the landlord to give us the deposit back before vacation of the property?

            We know he is not selling the property with tenants in situ as his Estate agent has made us aware of this in offering us the chance to view some properties they are marketing for rent. He definately needs us out.

            What can we do next?

            Comment


              #7
              [QUOTE=TerryCarter;67192]

              Can We stop the Viewings taking place? We hardly want strangers coming into our home when we are not there or when we are feeding or bathing our son or even when he's gone to bed for the night.?

              [QUOTE]

              Just refuse the viewings if you wish. Your LL will not be happy about it, but there is nothing he can do about it either.

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by Colincbayley View Post
                Your deposit was paid for the term of the AST. You can't expect your LL to return it to you until such a time as the tenancy has ended.

                Did he protect the deposit in an approved scheme?

                Yes the deposit is in an approved scheme.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Our tenancy agreement is the widely available 'Lawpack' branded Unfurnished House or flat rental agreement. by Tessa Shepperson.

                  Not sure if anyone would be familiar with the ins and out's of this or if it indeed helps with any advice you can offer.

                  I'm just a worried young dad who works hard and dosen't want to see his family out on the street.

                  Please help me.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Well you already know that you will have to leave.
                    Your only option is to ask your LL for your deposit back early, or borrow the money elsewhere.
                    I very much doubt your LL would be willing to return the deposit before the end of the contract.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by Colincbayley View Post
                      Well you already know that you will have to leave.
                      Your only option is to ask your LL for your deposit back early, or borrow the money elsewhere.
                      I very much doubt your LL would be willing to return the deposit before the end of the contract.
                      Perhaps new L will agree to await release of old deposit from the Scheme. At least he can verify that T has the funds available once released.
                      JEFFREY SHAW, solicitor [and Topic Expert], Nether Edge Law*
                      1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
                      2. Telephone advice: see http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=34638.
                      3. For paid advice about conveyancing/leaseholds/L&T, contact me* and become a private client.
                      4. *- Contact info: click on my name (blue-highlight link).

                      Comment


                        #12
                        We cannot get the money required to leave from anywhere.

                        I think we will end up having to not pay our rent for 2 months and save it for use as a new deposit, then move out and go to court on a reposession order and end with a CCJ to pay the landlord back at a given figure per month.

                        Obviously we don't want that to happen but cannot see another way out.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by TerryCarter View Post
                          Yes the deposit is in an approved scheme.
                          in saying this I am not positive it is the case but have been led to believe so by the Landlord and the terms of the tenancy.

                          Can I ask the landlord to provide proof of where the deposit is held?

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Two things spring to mind.

                            (Three actually, the third is not to panic as I don't think your situation is as bad as you think.)

                            Firstly, yes you are within your rights to refuse viewings. Your L has no right whatsoever to enter your property save for maintenance.

                            So, this is a bargaining tool that you have over him.

                            However, as mentioned above, the buyer of the property may wish to have a tenant in place. It may well be to everybody's benefit for the house to be sold with you in situ.

                            Secondly. I don't see why you need a CCJ and going to court. It is obviously not best practice for a tenant not to pay his last month's rent, and I cannot recommend you follow that approach, but you are obviously aware of the situation.

                            If you don't pay your last two months rent, then you will have the deposit for your new house. You landlord will be able to take the deposit off the amount you owe him for the last two months rent, and you will owe him nothing (subject to any damage, of course).
                            The contents of this note are neither advice nor a definitive answer. If you plan to rely on this, you should pay somebody for proper advice.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Originally posted by TerryCarter View Post
                              in saying this I am not positive it is the case but have been led to believe so by the Landlord and the terms of the tenancy.

                              Can I ask the landlord to provide proof of where the deposit is held?
                              Did L not serve on you the officially-required information re how deposit is protected, then?
                              You might have a claim against him for 3x deposit, if he has defaulted.
                              JEFFREY SHAW, solicitor [and Topic Expert], Nether Edge Law*
                              1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
                              2. Telephone advice: see http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=34638.
                              3. For paid advice about conveyancing/leaseholds/L&T, contact me* and become a private client.
                              4. *- Contact info: click on my name (blue-highlight link).

                              Comment

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