Help!!! Can i alter terms on renewal of tenancy agreement

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    Help!!! Can i alter terms on renewal of tenancy agreement

    I have lived at my latest house for 8 months. 2 months ago I got a letter from the letting agency asking for us to renew our tenancy agreement. I didn't think it was necessary as we are happy with our landlord and he is happy for us and we called him and he said not to worry about renewing it, just to let it roll on. (Seems that the letting agent only wants to make a few quid for doing nothing!) So we didn't bother to do anything more.

    Last week however I received a call from the letting agents telling me that we were required to pay this money and renew it, I explained the situation and then got my partner to call the landlord who confirmed to us that we weren't to worry and he would call the agents. Next he called us back and said he was mistaken and yes we do have to renew the tenancy!

    The landlord is the only person we deal with it is a Let only management service, the landlord holds our deposit (which is 6 weeks rent £975.00). The fee for the renewal is £100.00 plus VAT. I have the contract in front of me and I have signed to say that we will pay it although this was not pointed out to us at the time and I know I should have read it all but I'm a bit niffed about it!

    When we go to the agency and do the new agreement can we amend it so that we won't have to go through this again? As it seems like robbery to me and I've never had to do this before.
    Please help
    thanks

    #2
    Have a look through the letting agents forum, you might find the answer there.

    Comment


      #3
      I went through a similar fiasco a few years ago, the letting agent wanted to charge me £50 to renew the agreement and I said under the law I was not required to sign a new agreement and I would let it run as a periodic tenancy. As a property manager myself I printed info off for my LL and handed it to her, she was happy to follow my lead. The agent then called and said he wanted me to renew it and he would waive the fee.

      I am not too sure in your situation as there is a clause in your AST to say you will sign, maybe one of the more experienced members can validate that I believe this to be an unfair term. Not sure the whys and wherefores but I think it is unfair to tie you in in such a way. You should read through the AST before you sign it.
      GOVERNMENT HEALTH WARNING: I am a woman and am therefore prone to episodes of PMT... if you don't like what I have to say you can jolly well put it in your pipe and SMOKE IT!!

      Oh and on a serious note... I am NOT a Legal person and therefore anything I post could be complete and utter drivel... but its what I have learned in the University called Life!

      Comment


        #4
        Ignore the agents. They are nothing to do with you. You pay the landlord directly yes? And he holds the deposit? So the agent is irrelevant. If you do nothing, the landlord has 3 choices:
        1) start eviction proceedings, which it sounds like he won't as you pay regularly and he wants you to stay
        2) ask you himself to sign a new contract (which you can still refuse, again leaving him with options 1 and 3 !)
        3) Do nothing and let you stay on a 'periodic' tenancy, which runs from month to month indefinately till one or other of you gives notice. No reason really why both you and the LL should not be happy with this.

        As you have no contract with the agent, they cannot ask you for any money.
        Last edited by MK Landlord; 23-01-2006, 16:34 PM. Reason: typos

        Comment


          #5
          thanks for the advice so far I'm really pleased to get a rapid response

          JUST TO ADD I pay the rent through the letting agency not directly to the landlord, although I have thought that I should approach the landlord and suggest that I do alter the payments directly to him.

          Comment


            #6
            MK Landlord is right. Neither the agent nor the landlord can force you to sign another contract. If they want you to go then they have to serve two months notice on you. I very much doubt that will happen! The Landlord may not know how to deal with the agent but if you stay on a periodic tenancy, then he may have to pay a monthly fee to the agent. But that is his problem, not yours.

            Comment


              #7
              And just to amplify MK Landlord's excellent advice slightly: It is for the landlord to deal with the agent in accordance with his contract with them. If the worst gets to the worst you may find your landlord conniving with you to let the agent think you are leaving the property and then you carry on under a new AST provided directly by your landlord.

              P.P.
              Any information given in this post is based on my personal experience as a landlord, what I have learned from this and other boards and elsewhere. It is not to be relied on. Definitive advice is only available from a Solicitor or other appropriately qualified person.

              Comment


                #8
                Not that any of we decent landlords would ever do anything like that!

                (Ahem!)

                Comment


                  #9
                  Well, we might if we had been stupid enough not to read the terms of business of the agent we had appointed and we wanted to keep the tenant!

                  P.P.
                  Any information given in this post is based on my personal experience as a landlord, what I have learned from this and other boards and elsewhere. It is not to be relied on. Definitive advice is only available from a Solicitor or other appropriately qualified person.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Mine was a tongue-in-cheek response!!!

                    Lordy I do love not to pay those agents!

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Agents

                      Some of us deserve to be paid our fees. A good agent would not charge for a renewal, I was going to, being new and thought that is what was correct, however, reading this forum I now know that I would get myself a bad rep. I work hard and look after my LL and tenants, as I have said a few times on here, quite a few of us agents are worth our money. Most of us do not charge huge fees, that tends to be done by the bigger agencies, the small agencies seem to have a much better approach to our clients.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Well the last letting agent I dealt with had just one office, can't get much smaller. But he still charged me (the tenant) £69 to renew a 6 months tenancy agreement.
                        What did he do for that ? Send me the same old photocopy to sign and send back at my cost. Cost to him : less than £1 if you include the cost of paper, copier ink, his time and stamp.
                        I don't know what he charged the landlady for it.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by choices
                          Some of us deserve to be paid our fees. A good agent would not charge for a renewal
                          I don't think there's anything fundamentally wrong with an agent charging for a "renewal", if that entails the preparation of a new AST agreement; but what I do object to big time is if the LL and tenant are happy for the existing AST to simply go periodic, which involves the agent in doing absolutely nothing.

                          Equally nefarious are those agents who don't even point out that it's perfectly OK for an AST to go periodic, ie, that you MUST have a new AST, or official extension thereof, for the tenancy to continue.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Greed

                            I agree with you ericthelobster. I always state the periodic and the renewal differences, then leave it up to the client, I am not a believer in the hard sell, either someone wants something or they would like to be enlightened on the options, most people do as I suggest as I come acros as 'honest' which of course I AM.................

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Update!!!

                              Have spoken to the landlord on Friday night and he said he is going to take over the property let from the next six months - to sign the new agreement and pay the £100.00 + VAT. So went to the letting agents on Saturday to sign - but in the new agreement it still states that next renewal to pay another £117.50 in six months time. and the woman will not remove it from the new AST. Had a bit of a row and got to go back after she has spoken to the landlord AGAIN!!! But i dont think this term will be removed even then. I am worried about signing it with that stated in there as they really don't do anything to warrent the cost as far as i am concerned.

                              Should i get in touch with the trading standards office - will they help at all? I said to the woman at the letting agency that i will be doing that!

                              Comment

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