Sec 21 issued, then NTQ served. Tenant now wants to stay?!

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    Sec 21 issued, then NTQ served. Tenant now wants to stay?!

    Hi. After some advise. T had an AST until 28th Feb 2021, after some disagreement between LL and T regarding heating (LL pays all bills) and a guest staying longer than is deemed appropriate, T agrees to have notice served as not happy with any other options offered by LL to sort out the “guest” situation. LL serves Sec 21 with correct 6 month notice on 11th Nov 2020. In meantime T very reluctant to allow LL access to conduct viewings etc preferring them to be conducted after she leaves. LL explains that he does not know when this is as she hasn’t given notice. LL received email from T which states that she will vacate on 10th May (end of sec 21 notice) and that this is more than one months notice. She is now wanting to stay and has made this clear through a letter from the council. Plans have been made for the property and LL wants her out. Am I right in thinking that the email she sent was her Notice? Therefore tenancy ends on 10th May and she should leave. If she doesn’t she will be a trespasser and holding over? LL would like to know what his rights are if this is the case. Assuming that he will have to go through the courts regardless of whether her NTQ is valid or not? To make matters worse the property is an annexe to landlords private home so things are rather awkward now. TIA

    #2
    What exactly did the email say? Did the notice expire at the end of a tenancy period? If the notice isn't valid, did the landlord formally accept it as notice anyway? Does the tenancy agreement allow for service of notice by email?

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      #3
      The email said

      “I will vacate on the 10th of May. This is more than one months notice”

      The landlord responded by acknowledging receipt of the email and explaining that he’d be in touch about return of keys etc before the 10th May.

      The tenancy agreement asks for notice in writing but doesn’t specify email.

      The notice does not expire at the end of a tenancy period. Is that an issue?

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        #4
        The NTQ I received (shelter website template) was a fair bit more in depth than just “I will vacate on.....” I think there has to be the address etc on there, but an expert will advise I am sure.

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          #5
          The notice doesn't have to be in any specific form (and doesn't have to include the address), but it does have to be clear and unequivocal.

          That email would suffice as notice in my view.
          It isn't valid because the date is wrong, but the landlord has probably fixed that by accepting it and confirming that to the tenant.
          That means the tenancy ends when the notice expires.

          Assuming that's the case, if the tenant doesn't leave they are holding over, and provided that the landlord doesn't accept any more rent, the tenant will be a trespasser.
          Shelter are confident that they can be removed without a court order but I'm not sure how much use that is in practice.
          Even if the landlord changes the locks when the tenant is out, the police aren't experts in property law and would probably force the landlord to allow the tenant back in if they become involved.

          In theory, the landlord can go straight to court to get an order to remove the trespasser (which is not subject to the extended notice or the stay on evictions).

          The tenant can be charged something called mesne profit, which is double the value of the rent (but probably only once they leave).
          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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            #6
            I think that there is a fair chance that jpkeates interpretation above is how a court would see it, but if the tenant makes you go to court, I would just check it with a housing solicitor. However, it may work best as a threat and hopefully the tenant will think again.

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