legal definition or 'renewal' and 'extension'

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    legal definition or 'renewal' and 'extension'

    A contract between landlord and letting agent specifies a fee is payable if the tenant's contract is 'renewed or extended'.
    When the fixed term ended, the tenants moved automatically to a SPT, and the agent is demanding a fee from the landlord.
    Does this constitute a tenancy renewal? A tenancy extension? A new tenancy? Something else?

    #2
    When discussing tenancy, and someone say the tenancy was renewed or extended, in practice it generally mean a new tenancy was agreed. Can't really extend a fixed term tenancy. When you're agreeing an extension, you're actually agreeing a new tenancy.

    A SPT is legally a new tenancy, but and everyday language, it's neither a renewal or extension. It's a new tenancy, so it's not an extension of the previous tenancy or contract. Nor can it be a renewal since a new similar fixed term wasn't agreed.

    In any event, the agent hadn't done any work. The SPT arose by virtue of law. The previous fixed term tenancy ended, the tenant remained in residence, the law say a SPT is deemed granted. What is the agent suggesting they are charging for? What work did they actually do to earn the new fee? Such a fee is highly likely to be an unfair term I would suggest.
    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.

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      #3
      SPT renews every month......

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        #4
        Originally posted by AndrewDod View Post
        SPT renews every month......
        Does the intial SPT constitute a renewal too?

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          #5
          Originally posted by AndrewDod View Post
          SPT renews every month......
          That's not a renewal by sensible definition....
          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


            #6
            Originally posted by AndrewDod View Post
            SPT renews every month......
            Under what definition of "renew"?

            It is not a new tenancy.

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              #7
              Originally posted by MKMike View Post
              A contract between landlord and letting agent specifies a fee is payable if the tenant's contract is 'renewed or extended'.
              When the fixed term ended, the tenants moved automatically to a SPT, and the agent is demanding a fee from the landlord.
              Does this constitute a tenancy renewal? A tenancy extension? A new tenancy? Something else?
              How does your contract with the agent define "renewed" and "extended"?

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by MdeB View Post

                How does your contract with the agent define "renewed" and "extended"?
                It doesn't. That's the problem. I agree with KTC "That's not a renewal by sensible definition" but I'm checking on legal definition (if any) as the agency is threatening legal acion in supporting their claim for a fee.

                My belief is that if a fixed term was 'renewed', a new fixed term would be agreed. If the existing fixed term was 'extended' it would somehow continue, perhaps as a Contractual Periodic...?

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                  #9
                  Originally posted by MKMike View Post
                  if the tenant's contract is 'renewed or extended'.
                  Originally posted by MKMike View Post

                  It doesn't. That's the problem. I agree with KTC "That's not a renewal by sensible definition" but I'm checking on legal definition (if any) as the agency is threatening legal acion in supporting their claim for a fee.
                  I would say that the wording from your contract requires that the agent do some work to effect the renewal/extension of the contract. If the contract has not been changed, then I would say they have no claim on the money.

                  The threat of legal action by them suggests to me that this was a tenant-find only contract; if it were a fully-managed contract, then they would be collecting the rent and withholding their fee, meaning that you would be the one that threatened legal action over it.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by MKMike View Post
                    A contract between landlord and letting agent specifies a fee is payable if the tenant's contract is 'renewed or extended'.
                    When the fixed term ended, the tenants moved automatically to a SPT, and the agent is demanding a fee from the landlord.
                    Does this constitute a tenancy renewal? A tenancy extension? A new tenancy? Something else?
                    Does the contract define either term?? If not, stupid contract drafter!
                    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...

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                      #11
                      Originally posted by KTC View Post

                      That's not a renewal by sensible definition....
                      Well I was being tongue in cheek (that the OP owes the agent £3000 EVERY month). That said there was a considerable bit of jaw wagging around 2017 as to whether and how (with superstrike) the onset of SPT was a "renewal" but each subsequent month was not, and many square pegs were jammed into round holes. We have no idea how the agent defines "tenancy renewal" -- you clearly point out that an SPT is a renewal but that for the purpose of the OP it is not. So really we are not applying any consistent definitions at all based on housing law.

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                        #12
                        This has been pretty much settled since 2010 - as part of the Foxtons case decision.

                        The OFT raised concerns about the fairness of agent's terms relating to (amongst other things) "[t]erms which provided that commission shall be paid to Foxtons on renewals, continuations and extensions of a tenancy.". And a decision was arrived at that settled the issue.

                        So while it isn't technically possible to extend a tenancy or it's hard to argue that replacing one tenancy with another actually continues it, the normal English usage is allowed, and a follow on tenancy being granted for the same property to the same tenants is covered by the expressions "renewal", "continuation" or "extension".

                        You could argue that the ruling also found that "The liability to pay the renewal commission, the circumstances in which it is payable and the amount or rate of renewal commission must be clear and ‘actively flagged’ up to consumers. The renewal commission terms should also be written in plain and intelligible language, so that the consumer can understand the nature and extent of his liabilities."

                        And that doesn't seem to be the case here.

                        But the ruling doesn't make any particular reference to SPTs, although it does cover other situations where an agent claims a fee but does no work.
                        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).

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                          #13
                          As above, just reference the Foxtons case in your reply and tell them that no fee is therefore payable. They would have to challenge it legally if they don't agree and I would be amazed if they even contemplated it.

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                            #14
                            How does the Foxtons case help the OP if that case does not even involve a SPT?

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