Break clause clarity & worsening asthma due to flooring

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    Break clause clarity & worsening asthma due to flooring

    Can anyone please advise me on when I am legally entitled to break a 12 month AST? Our AST states the following:

    “The term hereby granted may be determined by the landlord or the tenant at any time not less than 6 months after the commencement date of this agreement or any previous agreement by giving to the tenant two calendar months notice in writing expiring on any day upon which day the term shall cease and determine but without prejudice to any of the rights and remedies of the landlord against the tenant in respect of any antecedent claim or breach of covenant”.

    I am unclear as to whether I must wait 6 months before giving 2 months written notice or whether after 4 months I can give 2 months notice to my landlord? If it's 4 months, I can give notice now, if it's 6 I must wait until December.

    Furthermore, the reason we wish to break our tenancy agreement is due to the significant gaps in the floorboards, as a result, I am suffering from severe asthma in the evening as there is a lot of cold air, dust and damp entering the house this way. We have tried to resolve this with our landlord, however she initially said (4 months ago when we first moved in and up until recently) that she would get laminate flooring put down. Four months on the floor still remains in the same condition and she now says she doesn’t have any money, however my asthma is worsening and my Doctor has prescribed stronger medication, while we already have the heating on 2.5 hours in the morning and 5.5 hours in the evening to try reduce the impact of the cold, damp and dust (and it's only October). I feel that if I have to wait until February to move out I am going to suffer significantly in terms of both health and heating costs.

    Do we have any grounds to end the AST early due to the health impacts?

    I would appreciate any advice.

    #2
    You are proposing to end the tenancy having lived at the property six months. Make sure the date on any notice you give is the last day of the six month and not the start of the seventh month of tenancy!

    You are required to give a minimum of two months notice and there should be no problem in dating and sending this letter earlier than the minimum period.

    Ensure you keep a copy of the letter and ask the landlord to acknowledge its receipt. Serve on the landlord personally in front of witness or send by recorded delivery.

    If you can prove your worsening condition is due to poor housing conditions you may be able to seek compensation for the losses involved in your move.

    If you want to remain at the property but have the work done then you could as an alternative route consider informing the landlord that your are contemplating reporting the defective conditions to the Environmental Health Department of the local council as you believe your health is being affected. Ask what action she will be taking to carry out the repairs.
    Vic - wicked landlord
    Any advice or suggestions given in my posts are intended for guidance only and not a substitute for completing full searches on this forum, having regard to the advice of others, or seeking appropriate professional opinion.
    Without Plain English Codes of Practice and easy to complete Prescribed Forms the current law is too complex and is thus neither fair to good tenants nor good landlords.

    Comment


      #3
      If you read the wording of the break clause although it mentions either L or T being able to determine, it only mentions L serving Notice on the T and not vice-versa. Also the wording is unclear about what "expiring on any day upon which day the term shall cease and determine" i.e. which "term" is meant here? It's also in legal jargon which might render it in favour of the tenant as to how he wants to interpret it. I say serve Notice now to end your tenancy after 6 months from its commencement.
      The advice I give should not be construed as a definitive answer, and is without prejudice or liability. You are advised to consult a specialist solicitor or other person of equal legal standing.

      Comment


        #4
        Thank you for your responses, these are most useful.

        I have spoken with the estate agency, even though the property is managed by the landlord and they have informed me I can not give notice before 6 months, therefore I can not leave until 8 months. Would you advise I go back to them with a letter from a Solicitor with an interpretation of the clause?

        Comment


          #5
          Here's a virtually identical thread which might provide a bit more info for you - it at least gives you a clause to quote...

          http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums...ad.php?t=14321

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by Paul_f View Post
            If you read the wording of the break clause although it mentions either L or T being able to determine, it only mentions L serving Notice on the T and not vice-versa. Also the wording is unclear about what "expiring on any day upon which day the term shall cease and determine" i.e. which "term" is meant here? It's also in legal jargon which might render it in favour of the tenant as to how he wants to interpret it. I say serve Notice now to end your tenancy after 6 months from its commencement.

            Seems that this could be an unfair contract and I would agree that it is also poorly presented.

            IMHO if the tenant follows my suggestions the landlord would not have a leg to stand on in the dispute came to Court which seems unlikely in the circumstances stated. The letter should be regarded as the required advanced warning of her intention to "determine" the tenancy immediately at the end of the six month period - i.e the minimum period stipulated in the tenancy condition. If notice were delayed until the end of the sixth month then the tenant would be locked in the tenancy for eight months and this would amount to a misleading description of an intended six month break period.

            Suggest the tenant takes good photographs of the openings in the flooring against a ruler or other object to show the dimensions. Measure accurately also.

            Wonder what the situation is with regard to the advance rent. If paid one month in advance the early cancellation of the rent due for the sixth month would seem appropriate.

            Hopefully the deposit is in a protected scheme and there will be no problems in getting that back
            Vic - wicked landlord
            Any advice or suggestions given in my posts are intended for guidance only and not a substitute for completing full searches on this forum, having regard to the advice of others, or seeking appropriate professional opinion.
            Without Plain English Codes of Practice and easy to complete Prescribed Forms the current law is too complex and is thus neither fair to good tenants nor good landlords.

            Comment


              #7
              Thank you. This makes me feel a lot more confident with the situation and able to respond to the Estate Agent with a solid argument. Whilst the recommendation to photograph the flooring is a good one and I will make sure this is done.

              As mentioned, rent is paid one month in advance and the deposit is in a secure deposit scheme so hopefully we will not suffer financially.

              Many thanks for your responses.

              Comment

              Latest Activity

              Collapse

              Working...
              X