Tenant leaving property early. Is estate agent's advice correct?

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    #46
    Originally posted by milliemollieblack View Post

    As for the potential loss of rent for the next 3 months, is it worth pursuing this when the T didn't return the signed contract? Agent seems to think we can but we'd have to wait until March/April to do this. Is this correct?
    See post #2

    Originally posted by milliemollieblack View Post
    What would you advise? Cut our losses and move on paying a further sum to the agents who have not been inconvenienced financially or lost anything?
    You can negotiate with them, and they can either agree or not.
    It is your job to chase things up. People sometimes make mistakes, this looks like one of those times.
    Allow tenants to protect their own deposits. I want free money when they do it wrong

    Comment


      #47
      Just to be technical -

      The tenants tenancy ended on 30th December as per their notice. If they remained in situ, they were trespassers and you were entitled to enter the property to secure it - you could not physicaly evict the ex-tenants without a court order but you could prevent re-entry.

      From 31st December, rent is not due. They still have to pay for being there but in legal terms, it is "mesne profit" (pronounced 'mean'). That may be important if this gets legal because the tenant agreeing you can have rent is not the same as them agreeing you can have mesne profit from the deposit.

      WRT the agent, I am torn. The £60 is the very least they could offer - indeed they have no right to retain that because they did not perform the service for which it was paid. As has been said, the agent had no way of making the tenant sign a new agreement, no matter how many times they chased it. I see 2 arguments:

      1) The agent owes you no compensation because they had no way of legally achieving what you expected them to do;
      2) The agent claimed to have done something (verified by the fact they charged you for it) and their failure has caused you loss. Therefore you could sue for (mitigated) consequential loss.

      I am not a lawyer but have previously sued an agent for consequential loss and won. I would be interested in the more legally adept members opinion on option (2).

      Comment


        #48
        Originally posted by Snorkerz View Post
        Just to be technical -

        I see 2 arguments:

        1) The agent owes you no compensation because they had no way of legally achieving what you expected them to do;
        2) The agent claimed to have done something (verified by the fact they charged you for it) and their failure has caused you loss. Therefore you could sue for (mitigated) consequential loss.

        I am not a lawyer but have previously sued an agent for consequential loss and won. I would be interested in the more legally adept members opinion on option (2).
        Definitely sue the agent. Don't accept their refund of £60. They charged you for renewing the lease and they did not fulfil their responsibilities to obtain a signed copy of the lease and, subsequently you have lost out financially.

        My understanding is that as your agent, acting on your behalf they owe you a duty of care, they claimed to have renewed the contract and charged you. They breached the duty of care by failing to formalise the agreement and you have now lost out because of their failure.

        Small claims court for for consequential losses as Snorkerz has stated. I honestly don't think the agent has a leg to stand on.

        Comment


          #49
          Thank you all for your opinions and advice.

          Agents seemed to be suggesting that, perhaps, we sue the T for the rent not paid! Interesting...

          Would we have to wait till end of March to do this or could this we do this sooner?

          Comment


            #50
            The tenant should be able to convince a court that she gave appropriate notice for a statutory periodic tenancy. Your agent seems to have accepted their notice so pursuing them for an on-going tenancy when it ended at the expiry of notice seems futile.

            You could sue for any unpaid rent up until the notice expired and mesne profit from then until move-out day. Write a letter before action giving them 14 days and then commence a claim at www.moneyclaim.gov.uk

            Comment


              #51
              Originally posted by milliemollieblack View Post
              Thank you all for your opinions and advice.

              Agents seemed to be suggesting that, perhaps, we sue the T for the rent not paid! Interesting...

              Would we have to wait till end of March to do this or could this we do this sooner?
              You would be better advised to get on and find new Ts.If the T did not sign the new fixed term contract, you will struggle to prove he was on anything other than a Statutory Periodic tenancy, and thus unable to prove that he owes you any rent (apart from mesne profits, as Snorkerz explains).

              Sue the agent, not the T.

              I agree with Snorkerz that the agent could not force the Ts to sign but given that he did not, it was negligent of them not to inform the LL that they had been unable to get him to sign.
              'Pause you who read this, and think for a moment of the long chain of iron or gold, of thorns or flowers, that would never have bound you, but for the formation fo the first link on one memorable day'. Charles Dickens, Great Expectations

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                #52
                Originally posted by mind the gap View Post
                Sue the agent, not the T.

                I agree with Snorkerz that the agent could not force the Ts to sign but given that he did not, it was negligent of them not to inform the LL that they had been unable to get him to sign.
                Wonder how often LAs (Letting Agents) charge LLs for non-existant contracts, and if investigated are shown to be doing it often, would it be considered fraud ?

                Hope you don't mind my cheeky bolding MTG.
                I'm a good tenant with great landlords
                I'm also a living, breathing, fully cooked female.

                Comment


                  #53
                  Originally posted by Brb View Post

                  Hope you don't mind my cheeky bolding MTG.
                  Be my guest!
                  'Pause you who read this, and think for a moment of the long chain of iron or gold, of thorns or flowers, that would never have bound you, but for the formation fo the first link on one memorable day'. Charles Dickens, Great Expectations

                  Comment


                    #54
                    Again, thanks to all for your ongoing replies and sound advice. I'm trying to negotiate something more from the agent so hoping to hear something tomorrow. Will keep you posted.

                    Comment

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