can I get out of a bad deal before it's signed by co-tenant?

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    can I get out of a bad deal before it's signed by co-tenant?

    Hi, I am a little dupe who signed a contract for a surprisingly cheap one bedroom flat to share with my boyfriend once his company transfers him to London (tomorrow). I viewed a bright quiet place two weeks ago on Saturday, met the landlady and it all seemed a bit shabby but good for its price. Two weeks later upon signing my contract I found out that she is not the landlord - she is sub-renting. The landlord owns the pub downstairs. What pub?, I asked. When I viewed I was not told there was a pub downstairs, I did not see it because we entered through a side gate and there was no noise at all as it was 11 am on Saturday. I just moved in and spent my first Saturday above the pub agonizing - the noise level is impossible. I am a student writing a thesis and I cannot risk my nerves and my work by staying here.
    My boyfriend has not signed the contract yet. I already signed and paid a security deposit and one month's rent. The contract is for 6 months. Can I leave right now? What will I have to pay?

    #2
    You (the tenant)have signed the AST and moved in (stayed the night) As such you are bound by the AST and resp for property & rent until the fixed term ends.
    You could try & negotiate an early release with LL. She is under no obligation to do so or is entitled to compensation eg cash settlement, say x months rent(max 6) or re-advertising costs and rent until suitable new T can move in.

    Boyfriend does not have to sign the AST, unless he wants to be joint & severally liable.
    Try and negotiate a settlement with LL.
    Rent in haste, repent at leisure. Harsh, but LLs are entitled to some min security as well as Ts!

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      #3
      Your boyfriend shouldn't sign and you should argue it was the intention of the parties that no-one be bound until everyone had signed the agreement. Back that up with a misrepresentation argument - that the landlord didn't tell you she was sub-letting or that the property was above a flat. These arguments may not be successful and in the worst case scenario you can be taken to court to pay six months' rent. However, I would expect that you can come to some arrangement with the landlord to pay a lesser sum. Your opening position should probably be one months' rent and negotiate from there.
      Disclaimer:

      The above represents my own opinion, derived from personal knowledge and should not be relied upon as definitive or accurate advice. It is offered free of charge and may contain errors or omissions or be an inaccurate opinion of the law. I accept no liability for any loss or damage suffered as a result of relying on the above.

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        #4
        Very difficult to get out of this I think. The fact your boyfriend has not signed may help, but the snag is that you have signed a contract, paid rent and a deposit and moved in. Once you are in and have paid rent there is a tenancy. A short term tenancy does not need to be in writing.

        There will be no misrepresentation unless you were told there was no pub below or that it was a quiet flat.

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          #5
          divanova - I would hazard a quess that you are not as old as I am, If it's any consolation I had a similar experience many years ago (when I was your age)and it has been etched on my brain ever since!!! I am not qualified to talk about the legalities but from the posts above I would say you don't have much choice. It sounds silly but can you negate the noise effect?? I use ear defenders in my workshop, you can get some that receive radio so you could listen to some nice relaxing Schurbert or Dvorak while studying. Since the rent is low perhaps some extra thick curtains might help. Just a few thoughts but I expect you'll tell me the walls actually vibrate with the noise :roll: not a lot you can do about that, but six months is a (relatively) short time frame.

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            #6
            I have to say, that it seems a little bit 'bad faith' that the viewing was held while the pub was shut.
            To save them chiming in, JPKeates, Theartfullodger, Boletus, Mindthegap, Macromia, Holy Cow & Ted.E.Bear think the opposite of me on almost every subject.

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              #7
              It was also ill=advised not to check out the locality before signing any docs. I guess the boyfriend would have spotted the pub pretty quick.

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