Death of Landlord - Urgent advice needed!

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    Death of Landlord - Urgent advice needed!

    Hi there

    I am due to move into a rental property this coming Saturday but yesterday received a phone call from the letting agents saying the landlord had passed away.

    We signed the tenancy agreement 7 days before his death but the lease itself does not begin for another 3days. ANy ideas what my rights are if the family decided not to let the flat, and can they do that?

    My current lease expires on Saturday and I have arranged for a removals van. If I can't move in I will be homeless with a van full of belongings but nowhere to go.

    Please help!!

    #2
    If they withdraw from the agreement then the estate will be liable for any costs that their withdrawal causes you. If it went to court, you would be expected to prove that you had kept your costs to a minimum.

    This may seem like an obvious question - but why would you not be able to stay in your current home?

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      #3
      I would call the letting agent and ask them if anything had changed.
      Allow tenants to protect their own deposits. I want free money when they do it wrong

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        #4
        AFAIK, the landlord's death does not 'cancel' the contract, i.e. the contract for the tenancy still stands, you still have the right to insist on proceeding with the tenancy, and if you are refused, you would have a claim against the landlord's estate for breach of contract for your losses consequent on the breach (e.g. cost of temporary accommodation, cost of storing your belongings, etc, until you can find a new place to move into).

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          #5
          Thank you for your help - I have to move out of my current home as my lease ends on Sunday and another tennant is moving in.

          The lettings agent is being really unhelpful and not returning my calls. It may be that thefamily are more than happy to continue with the agreement but I wanted to know a little more about my rights if they do try to back out.

          Thanks again!

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            #6
            Originally posted by julia_london View Post
            Thank you for your help - I have to move out of my current home as my lease ends on Sunday and another tennant is moving in.
            If you had to, you can stay in your current property. When your fixed term expires, you are automatically given a 'statutory periodic tenancy' by section 5 of the 1988 Housing Act. This may have financial consequences depending on whether you gave notice or not, but those would be reasonable financial losses (ie what you could claim against the landlords estate) as opposed to a week or fortnight in the Ritz, which wouldn't.

            Of course, that means your current landlord would be on here next saying 'my new tenant can't move in - what do I do', and one of the things we'd say is that it was silly of him to grant a tenancy without having possession of the property. However, not your problem.

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              #7
              Sorry to hear about your situation.

              As stated above your new contract is still valid, could you perhaps go into the LA and chat face to face?

              My advice would be to plan to move as you have but don't surrender keys to your current place until you actually have your new place keys.

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