Joint tenancy notice rights

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    Joint tenancy notice rights

    I currently live in a shared property with three others. We signed a year long contract which is up in June 09 and we pay over £25,000 per year, which I understand means that we are under a Common Law tenanacy agreement.

    Myself and one other girl decided that we wished to move out at the end of April and as such gave the agents 2 months notice of our intention to do so. The other girls decided that they wished to stay in the house and wrote to the agents at the same time indicating that they would find two replacement tenants.

    However, I want to know what will happen if either of these housemates falls through as we are "jointly and severally liable" for the rent as stipulated in the contract?

    I was comforted in the knowledge that should a replacement housemate not be found, I would only be liable for the rental payments until the end of June, as the tenancy would terminate at this point.

    However, I am led to understand by the estate agents that I cannot give notice on the property as we have to serve notice as a whole. This means that if the new tenants do not move in, our contract will just roll on a two month notice period. Therefore, I could effectively be legally bound to the contract forever more, as they are basically telling me that a single tenant could decide they wanted to stay in the property for several more months and we would all still be liable for the rent as our names are on the contract!

    Can anyone advise me of my rights in this situation, as this seems absurd!


    There is one letting to four people. There are no continuation rights. When the fixed term ends, the tenancy ends- no Notice required.
    What happens after that point depends on:
    a. L (and L's Letting Agent); and
    b. such of the four people as want to remain resident.
    JEFFREY SHAW, solicitor [and Topic Expert], Nether Edge Law*
    1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
    2. Telephone advice: see
    3. For paid advice about conveyancing/leaseholds/L&T, contact me* and become a private client.
    4. *- Contact info: click on my name (blue-highlight link).


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