Possible to require notice from tenant to end AST after initial period?

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  • Possible to require notice from tenant to end AST after initial period?

    Is it permissable for a landlord to include a clause in the agreement requiring a tenant to give two months notice if they wish to determine the tenacy at the and of the initial period?

    OFT guidance on unfair contract terms in rental agreements is that that notice should not be required for a fixed term tenancy, but that the requirements for ending periodic tenacies are different.

    Would a 6 month AST that refers to continuation as a periodic tenancy be treated as

    a) a fixed term tenancy for 6 months, and a periodic tenancy thereafter, for which notice to leave after 6 months could not be required


    b) a periodic tenacy throughout, and notice would be required if the tenant wished to leave after six months?

  • #2
    A tenant can just leave at the end of the fixed term without giving notice. You can't write anything into a tenancy that overrules this right.


    • #3
      I beg to differ on this one and believe that it would be permissable to put a requirement for notice to be given if a tenant wishes to terminate his tenancy at the end of the fixed period. Whether a court would accept a period as great as two months I don't know, but as tenants are otherwise legally obliged to give one month's notice anyway, I would have thought that this would be acceptable. More authoratitive opinions may follow!

      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.


      • #4
        Originally posted by P.Pilcher
        I beg to differ on this one and believe that it would be permissable to put a requirement for notice to be given if a tenant wishes to terminate his tenancy at the end of the fixed period.
        But surely it is either a fixed term or it isn't, by adding a process to end the contract it would no longer be a fixed term contract?


        • #5
          Pilcher is wrong and Energise right!

          You can't impose conditions on a tenant when it's covered by statutory rights. Any clause that requires a tenant to give notice on a fixed term tenancy is void.

          The poster is trying to "mix and match" to suit his needs, and you can't do that. I suppose you could start with a monthly periodic tenancy but if the tenant left after six months without notice you might find it difficult to impose conditions upon his doing so, as he has a statutory right to live there for six months anyway.
          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.


          • #6

            I was hoping to hear that

            The contract is deliberately vague in that it tries to blur the distinction between the initial period and and periodic element. On the basis of what I read on the OFT website I thought it wasn't legit, but I wanted to check before wasting money on a lawyer.

            I am quite keen to get away from the landlord as quickly as possible, I ended up taking the place in a hurry as I hadn't been able to get a place near my new work; but there are so many ridiculous terms in the agreement I'd like to hop it as soon as possible and get the impending grief over with. Not having to get a new place arranged two months before I move will obviously help!

            I can now look forward to the certain court case when they try to impose their clauses that things such include paying for the complete dedecoration of the property on leaving. Always a shame that an agent showing the NAEA logo should copy so many of the OFTs 'Things you can't put in' clauses, and use them as inspiration to think up a few more!!!


            • #7
              Thanks Paul_f! I was worried after what Pilcher had posted! My Ast ends 31st March 2006 and I intend to give my landlord as little notice as I can! After all I have been through i don't see why I should show him any curtosy whatsoever. Its not a method I can condone but why should I show him any respect when he has shown me so little.. 2 wrongs don't make a right but I want to prove a point to him!

              There are still issues at the flat and he has failed to address them, there are even issues with the external of the property and I don't want to be in that flat when a brick falls and kills a passer by on the street below. I have done my bit, I have informed the landlord of the issues, if he does not want to address them thats his concern, but I know I would feel guilty if and when it happens.

              OP let us know how you get on.
              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!


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