Tenant replacement within contract

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    Tenant replacement within contract

    Hi everyone,

    I signed a contract to rent a room in a flat in London in April that was to run for 12 months @ £600 pcm. I have now decided, 4 months in, to move in with my girlfriend. We have an agreement with the landlord that if we move out within the contract we have to find someone to replace ourselves.

    I have found someone to replace me but the landlord wants them to pay £650 pcm instead of £600. This makes the room pretty uncompetitive. Surely his changing of the rates is unfair given that £600 is stated on the contract, that technically will still run until April 2011. It seems like he's moving the goalposts.

    Is he allowed to change the rate as stated on the contract, or is he effectively invalidating any contract we have together?

    He also wants either myself or the new tenant to pay from August 1st even though he'll be renovating the flat for the first week. I cant see that that's fair either.

    any help greatly appreciated

    This hinges on....

    Is your tenancy being assigned to the new tenant


    Has the landlord accepted your surrender and signed a NEW tenancy agreement for a fixed term with the new tenant?


      hi, thanks for the quick reply...

      I'm not actually sure what he's doing about the contract. There are two further tenants, one who's been there since the beginning of the contract and another who's starting on 1st august (so there are 2 new tenants moving in)

      what would the difference be?

      In addition, I don;t believe he's placed our current deposit in a deposit protection scheme. Though I am clarifying that at the moment.


        Okay, another question - are all 3 of you on the same contract, or do you each have your own contract.

        I am beginning to get the feeling that your situation might be a bit of a mess in so far as who has what rights! Not your fault.

        With regard to the difference in my former Q - if it is the same tenancy in its fixed term, then it is a contract to pay £X for X months, he can't change that midway ulsess the contract allows for this. With a new contract, he can do what he wants.


          We're all on the same contract. But I think the idea is that the new people will all be issued separate contracts.

          If the landlord starts a new contract, does that not mean that it's effectively out of my hands?


            If it is a joint tenancy between all 3 current occupants, they have the rights to the entire house between them. Therefore, even if you go, the landlord can not issue a tenancy for your room - because the remaining 2 still have the entire house. The problem being that while you are still on this joint tenancy you are still liable for the rent.

            It is difficult, not knowing the full ist of comings and goings, but it may be that the recently arrived tenants addition to the tenancy isn't legit.. but that's another matter.

            So, irrespective of a new tenant moving in - what you really need is confirmation in writing from the landlord that YOUR responsibilities end when you leave the property. If a replacement is found, you might be able to claim surrender by operation of law - but it would be a hassle - something in black and white would be much easier to prove.

            ================================================== =======

            The legal way to do what you want is that your place on the tenancy is 'assigned' to the new tenant.

            In this way, the current tenants "a, b & c" and over the existng tenancy to "a, b & d". The agreement would be a legal deed and need to be signed by a, b, c, d & the landlord.

            Here is a template for such a deed, writen by another forum member: http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums...66&postcount=4

            That would release you from the current tenancy agreement, and if it is still in its fixed term, the rent can not be increased to the end. After that, the joint rent can be inceased using the section 13 process.

            It would still be a mess, ut you can let the others worry about it.


              Yes. L ought to tidy-up matters by co-operatively ending the existing letting and issuing either:
              a. one new AST for whole house, to the new array of three tenants; or
              b. three new ASTs, one per room to each of the new array of three tenants.
              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 http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=34638.
              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).


                Originally posted by mommus View Post
                I don;t believe he's placed our current deposit in a deposit protection scheme. Though I am clarifying that at the moment.
                If you discover that your deposit is not protected AND your last tenancy agreement was after 6th April 2007, send this letter (keeping a copy and obtaining a free certificate of posting from the Post Office). It should be sent to the LANDLORD, not the agent, at the address specified for the service of documents on your tenancy agreement. This may be the agents address, but still address the letter to the landlord.
                letter before action

                Dear Mr XXXXXXXX

                RE: 123 High Street, Anytown, AT1 2AA

                On the XXX of XXX 20XX I/We paid you a tenancy deposit of £XXX in respect of the above property.

                The Housing Act 2004 introduced the concept of "Tenancy Deposit Protection" and obliges private landlords to protect/register all tenancy deposits with one of 3 approved schemes.

                I/We have verified with all three schemes that the deposit you hold was NOT protected by any scheme. This is unlawful.

                You must refund the outstanding balance of my/our deposit IN FULL within 14 days. If you fail to do so, I/we shall sue you for the balance due PLUS the statutory penalty for non-protection of deposits, which is three times the value of the deposit.

                Yours sincerely
                This letter makes reference to a penalty of 3x the value of the deposit. This is specified in the 2004 Act, but is not a simple claim, and you should take legal advice before contemplating it.

                However, if you haven't been repaid within 14 days, you can commence a claim for the deposit only at http://www.moneyclaim.gov.uk. There are fees, but if you are on a low income, you may be able to reclaim them. If you do have to pay, presuming you win your case, the landlord will be ordered to refund any fees you have paid.

                The small claims process is quite simple and doesn't require the services of a solicitor. However, you might find it useful to obtain a book on the process - a number are available from your local library or Amazon. If the landlord doesn't pay, you may have to take enforcement action which could include freezing his bank account, having his current tenants ordered to pay their rent to you, or having a charge put on the rental property.


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