Statutory or contractual periodic tenancy?

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    Statutory or contractual periodic tenancy?

    Hi, I have browsed several topics similar to this but I’m still unsure as to my current position, this is the situation.

    I am currently in the process of moving out of my current apartment, my landlord/letting agency has advised me that I need to provide 2 months notice whereas I believe it’s only 1 month.

    my original AST expired in October 2017, the section regarding notice reads thus

    ”the tenant agrees to confirm in writing to the landlord or agent no later than 2 months prior to the end of their tenancy of their intentions to vacate the property. If notice is not received then the landlord gives reasonable agreement to allow the tenancy to continue on a periodic basis (subject to 2 months written notice from the tenant or 2 months written notice from the landlord)

    in short, my question is do I need to give 1 months notice (as per statutory tenancy rules, or 2 months as per the original agreement?

    Many thanks in advance!

    #2
    You'll need to read the rest of the agreement to know if there's a contractual or statutory periodic tenancy.
    If there's a fixed term of x months that ends, it's probably a statutory periodic tenancy.

    If that's the case your notice has to be a minimum of a month ending at the end of a rental period. Which will almost certainly be the same day of the month that the fixed term ended on.
    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


      #3
      Originally posted by jpkeates View Post
      You'll need to read the rest of the agreement to know if there's a contractual or statutory periodic tenancy.
      If there's a fixed term of x months that ends, it's probably a statutory periodic tenancy.

      If that's the case your notice has to be a minimum of a month ending at the end of a rental period. Which will almost certainly be the same day of the month that the fixed term ended on.
      Hi, thanks for the response, sorry I should have clarified. The original fixed term was for 12 months beginning October 2016 (hence the ‘end’ date of October 2017).

      theres nothing further in the original agreement about continuation past this date, the copied text above is the only reference to the agreement continuing. I haven’t signed anything else since so my assumption was because it does not state a contractual periodic agreement that it was statutory by default.

      tom

      Comment


        #4
        Update

        I spoke with shelter who advised me that they believe it to be a contractual periodic tenancy.

        would it be best to take their word for it or seek legal advice?

        Comment


          #5
          Shelter probably know more about tenancies than most non-specialist solicitors (or me).

          I suspect that they're taking the wording "the landlord gives reasonable agreement to allow the tenancy to continue" as the basis for that, which I don't think is really enough, but I'd follow their advice.
          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


            #6
            "the tenant agrees to confirm in writing to the landlord or agent no later than 2 months prior to the end of their tenancy of their intentions to vacate the property. If notice is not received then the landlord gives reasonable agreement to allow the tenancy to continue on a periodic basis (subject to 2 months written notice from the tenant or 2 months written notice from the landlord)"

            What many landlords do not like is that a tenant can walk away at the end of a fixed term without giving notice. The above is an attempt to achieve the impossible and in the process sews confusion.

            Any requirement for the tenant to give notice to end a fixed term on its last day is clearly a nonsense as it is a requirement to give notice of something which will happen anyway. Even if failure to give notice is technically a breach nothing will flow from it because the landlord has suffered no loss.

            A requirement to give notice of an intention to leave is something different but equally pointless. It is pointless because the notice will not end the tenancy and if the tenant stays in occupation a statutory periodic tenancy will arise if the tenancy is an assured tenancy. There is also the problem that the tenant may not form the intention to leave until near the end of the tenancy meaning that the required length of notice cannot be given.

            Anyway let's look at the clause:

            stray "of"

            If you omit "in writing to the landlord or agent no later than 2 months prior to the end of their tenancy" you are left with "the tenant agrees to confirm of their intentions". The meaning is not affected, but grammatical errors in a legal document are a warning sign that the drafting may not be up to scratch.

            no later than 2 months prior to the end of their tenancy

            As mentioned above, there is a problem if the tenant only forms the intention to leave during the last two months.

            If notice is not received

            "Served" would be better than "received".

            There is no indication of the date before which the notice must be received.

            the landlord gives reasonable agreement

            What is the "reasonable" adding here? Did the draftsman consider the possibilty that the agreement could be unreasonable? "Gives agreement" is a bit awkward.

            agreement to allow the tenancy to continue

            But does the tenant agree?

            continue on a periodic basis (subject to 2 months written notice from the tenant or 2 months written notice from the landlord)

            It is not clear what the periods are. Do we have a monthly periodic tenancy with two months' notice required or a two-monthly tenancy?

            If notice is not received then the landlord gives reasonable agreement to allow the tenancy to continue on a periodic basis (subject to 2 months written notice from the tenant or 2 months written notice from the landlord)

            The first question is whether the clause (if it works) is too disconnected from the part of the agreement which says what the term is. The second is whether (if it is not too disconnected) it makes the whole grant void because the continuation is contingent on no notice being given.

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