Is my property legally let out - agent says so?

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  • Is my property legally let out - agent says so?

    A few weeks ago I received a call from X agent asking me if I was looking for a tenant for my flat. As it happens I was. I had not signed anything at that stage but gave the negotiator keys.I was told there were two prospective tenants and then was called and told me that a couple had put a holding deposit on the property.

    I went into the branch and signed a rent collection service agreement – but NOT the AST itself. The credit checking process began. A few days later I had not heard from the negotiator so I looked at their website and saw the property was still live. I emailed the negotiator stating that I wanted an update and I wanted to “review and sign the AST and see the reference report before I was happy to proceed” (though their rent collection terms say they can sign on my behalf???). I never received a reply. A few days later I called because of the bad service to withdraw but I was told I couldnt. Is the property legally let out and can I withdraw from the rent collection service agreement?
    Points to consider;

    -The tenants have only put a deposit down but NOT signed the AST either (I have asked the negotiator to send it through with the date signed and he refuses)
    -I have NOT received a final report from the agent (they have not given me access to their online progress system either)
    -I have NOT signed the AST
    -T’s and C’s of the rent collection terms state that while the property is unlet either party may terminate this agreement bu giveing the other not less than one weekswritten notice to expire at any time and an administration fee is payable should the landlord retract from an agreement made whether verbally or in writing to let the property with any representative of the company or it’s contractors. (I am happy to pay this and have told them so)

  • #2
    Try to maintain a good relationship with the prospective Ts, as it will help you in this situation.

    If the Ts have not moved in AND haven't signed a tenancy agreement, then no tenancy has been created.

    Write to your agent (make sure this is in writing) saying that:

    a. you are formally instructing them to cease marketing the property and that you do not want to proceed with the prospective Ts they have found for you, regardless of the outcome of the references; and

    b. you are withdrawing your authority for the agent to sign any document (including any tenancy agreement) on your behalf.

    You will lose the prospective Ts if you don;t like the agency - I think you have to live with that.

    But do write to the Ts and just say you no longer wish to let the property due a change in your circumstances, and that the agent is not empowered to sign any agreement on your behalf.

    One thing you will have to consider is what fees you have agreed the agency may levy against you in the event the property is not let (sometimes there is a marketing fee). But check the agency agreement carefully and expect (I am sorry to say) some bad behaviour from the agency.

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