Agent withholding reference - pregnant tenant

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    Agent withholding reference - pregnant tenant

    We renewed our fixed term lease 5months ago (with no break clause) because the agents told us they would be able to find new tenants and surrender the lease at any time. That assurance was important to us as we were planning on having a baby and we wouldn't be able to stay in the current apartment after the baby was born - there's simply not enough space.

    The baby plans realised much much sooner than expected and I'm now 5months pregnant. We told the agent we need to move out, gave them plenty of notice (2months - border of zone 1/2 London) and they started to look for new tenants. They however are withholding the tenancy reference because they haven't agreed new rent yet and the new agent is telling us the new landlord can't take up an insurance without the reference. We have excellent credit scores, savings that would cover 2yrs of rent which anyway only makes 14% of our base income.

    We understand we are liable for rent under old agreement and are prepared to pay until new tenants move in. We can't lose the new apartment though because its perfect for our baby needs. I also can't be moving out later than planned as I will be too pregnant to do the move.

    We offered to pay 6months rent in advance but apparently tenancy reference is preferred. The referencing agency will also accept incomplete reference but old agent doesn't want to give it even though we're still legally bound by the old agreement. I found in landlords association that: 4.2 The landlord will not refuse a tenant a reference for the purposes of securing a new tenancy, without good cause.

    My question is do they have a good cause in this case? The old landlord is a Kuwaiti fund represented by an asset manager on-site and new landlord is a private individual.


    #2
    Then I would ask for new landlord's details and write to him. Failing that, get them from Land Registry. I suspect agent wants commission on the insurance policy.

    Comment


      #3
      No LL or Agent can be required to provide a ref.
      If they do, it should be accurate and truthful and only provided to prospective LL/Agent on written request & not to T.
      From the facts you provided I Isuggest any truthful ref would say
      'This T signed a new AST on <date> to replace original AST Neither contained a Break Clause, despite T being aware that the were trying for a baby for which T deemed the Property 'unsuitable' for baby's arrival'

      T was advised early surrender would be permitted when suitable replacement Ts moved in.
      No such applications have been received.

      Comment


        #4
        https://www.gateshead.gov.uk/media/6...?m=63677794675 7400000

        The licence holder must obtain valid references in relation to potential tenants, in order to make an informed decision regarding their occupancy of the property, before the tenancy commences. References should include details of previous and recent housing history. Evidence of these references and checks must be made available to the Authority upon request.

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by boletus View Post
          https://www.gateshead.gov.uk/media/6...?m=63677794675 7400000

          The licence holder must obtain valid references in relation to potential tenants, in order to make an informed decision regarding their occupancy of the property, before the tenancy commences. References should include details of previous and recent housing history. Evidence of these references and checks must be made available to the Authority upon request.
          My council also has a complementary clause requiring the landlord to provide such references, which must be truthful, and, specifically must include any details of allegations of ASB.

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by mariner View Post
            'This T signed a new AST on <date> to replace original AST Neither contained a Break Clause, despite T being aware that the were trying for a baby for which T deemed the Property 'unsuitable' for baby's arrival'

            T was advised early surrender would be permitted when suitable replacement Ts moved in.
            No such applications have been received.
            Eeeeee.... I thought the reference should state if we paid rent on time and kept the apartment in a good state. It's hard for me to see how anyone would write something like "despite T being aware that the were trying for a baby for which T deemed the Property 'unsuitable' for baby's arrival'". It's like saying don't try to make a baby in an apartment that's not suitable and make sure you know how long it's going to take you to make one before you sign any legally binding agreements 😂😂😂😂 The landlord has power over everything that's happening in his apartments and tenants should be psychic to inform him of future events...

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by Agyjustin View Post

              The landlord has power over everything that's happening in his apartments and tenants should be psychic to inform him of future events...
              If it were the landlord that was expecting a baby and suddenly needed to re-occupy the property, how sympathetic would you or the average tenant be do you think?

              Comment


                #8
                Why wouldn't I be? This happens all the time in most cases when the landlord just wants to sell the apartment. Is having a baby sth that you want ppl to forsee and take appropriate steps to ensure people that provide/live in your accomodation are not impacted or asked to go out of their way?

                Comment


                  #9
                  There's nothing you can do to compel someone to give you a reference, so what the agent is asking for isn't reasonable.
                  The landlord's association's guide to good practice is meaningless.
                  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


                    #10
                    The agent said they will give the reference a month in advance as this is apparently their standard practice. Some licencing schemes do require a response to referencing request and the landlords' association is a good practice guide for non members but binding for members. I think when witholding reference becomes a tool in managing disputes with tenants similarly to how witholding deposit was in the past the good practices will soon become rules...

                    Comment


                      #11
                      I don't see any way that a licensing local authority can compel anyone to give a reference in practice.
                      Same with the landlord association.

                      I don't take any notice of references myself - they're pointless.
                      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


                        #12
                        The person that fails to give the reference would lose their licence so not be able to act as a landlord in that authority's area.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by leaseholder64 View Post
                          The person that fails to give the reference would lose their licence so not be able to act as a landlord in that authority's area.
                          I can't imagine that that could happen in real life.

                          There are all kinds of legitimate reasons that someone would not be able to give a reference.
                          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


                            #14
                            Originally posted by jpkeates View Post
                            I don't see any way that a licensing local authority can compel anyone to give a reference in practice.
                            I think legally they may be on dodgy ground but I wouldn't want to risk my business for the sake of a 5 minute reference.

                            I assume you're not in a landlord licensing area? Have a read through this application form of some of the hoops (law abiding) landlords have to jump through for every property;

                            https://liverpool.gov.uk/business/la...ensing-scheme/

                            Comment


                              #15
                              I'm not (currently) in a landlord licensing area.
                              It's one of the things that would cause me to re-evaluate whether I wished to continue in the business.

                              To be honest, I'm not opposed to the idea that people who supply something essential like housing at least register that they're doing it.
                              It's just that local authorities seem to make the worst possible version of that.
                              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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