Notice period after fixed term of AST

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  • Notice period after fixed term of AST

    Hi. I signed an AST for an initial fixed term of 6 months on 31 March 2006. After that term expired at the end of Sep 2006, we agreed over the telephone with our landlord that we would continue renting as we were happy in the property. We did not sign a new AST. We now want to give notice. Now there is an issue. The original AST agreement which was signed by all parties stated that both the tenant and the landlord are obliged to give 2 month's notice to end the tenancy - even for periods that extend beyond the initial fixed term (6 months) of the original agreement of 6 months. I am quite confused as I have been told numerous times that I only need to give 1 month's notice as the tenancy has now become a statutory periodic tenancy. However, my landlord says that since I signed an agreement that stated 2 month's notice was required, I am obliged to give 2 months, even though the fixed term has lapsed long ago. Please could someone enlighten me on this?

  • #2
    Is your rent payable (and actually paid) monthly? If so, each month after fixed term expiry is effectively a new one-month tenancy period, so you can end the deal by giving one month's notice only.

    Let's see if anyone disagrees.
    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).

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    • #3
      I have read that a periodic tenancy continues with the same conditions as the original contract. In my case, following the end of the initial AST, my tenants and myself sign an addendum to add to the original contract confirming the two month notice by both parties, with a new ending date. Therefore, it is highly possible that by adding the addendum that I actually created another AST. Could someone confirm this please? Many thanks in advance.
      ASSUME NOTHING - QUESTION EVERYTHING!

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      • #4
        Yes. My rent is payable monthly and actually paid monthly. I cannot understand that by adding an addditional addendum to require 2 month's notice that you could actually be creating another AST. This would imply that the AST has indefinite terms i.e. with no fixed term.

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        • #5
          The addendum has a new fixed term. It then merely confirms that the original contractual terms remain in force to include the two months notice by tenants. My agents created the addendum, but haven't charged me for it, so not sure why it was considered better than just allowing the tenants to remain on a periodic. Maybe it is just a way of creating more paper trail that the tenants and LL both agree to the original terms especially the two month notice by tenant.
          ASSUME NOTHING - QUESTION EVERYTHING!

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          • #6
            Aha. I understand what you are saying now. But if my addendum does not state a new fixed term, it is surely invalid to insist on a 2 month notice since it would default to a periodic tenancy?

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            • #7
              Is there anyone out there who can give me a definitive answer? I spoke to Shelter just now and they say that it is definitely 1 month notice, irrespective of the terms of the agreement which imposes a 2 month notice after the fixed term.

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              • #8
                From "landlord and tenant law" by Wilkie, etc.

                It states that at common law, the notice period is that of a rent period; ie a month, but says that parties can contractually opt out of this as long as the agreement is clear and explicit about this.
                All posts in good faith, but do not rely on them

                * * * * * ** * * * * * * * * * * * *

                You can search the forums here:

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                • #9
                  So in essence, we have an indefinite AST - and will be in a constant 6 month fixed term every six months..... indefinitely? Does that make any sense?

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                  • #10
                    No, No, No! As you have a statutory periodic tenancy no matter what the landlord wants to think, you only have to serve a minimum one month's Notice to end the tenancy but it must be at the end of a rental period. Remember your statutory rights are not affected just because the landlord thinks that he can hold you to two months' Notice.

                    Parties can mutually agree to remove any clauses from the auspices of the Housing Act 1988 providing it doesn't interfere with the tenant's statutory (therefore, lawful) rights to end the tenancy.
                    The advice I give should not be construed as a definitive answer, and is without prejudice or liability. You are advised to consult a specialist solicitor or other person of equal legal standing.

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                    • #11
                      Thanks for that! it has really been confusing. So to conclude, it is not possible to enfore a 2 month notice period upon a tenant after the initial fixed term of an AST - irrespective of the explicit terms of the agreement?

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                      • #12
                        Err.....don't you understand English?
                        The advice I give should not be construed as a definitive answer, and is without prejudice or liability. You are advised to consult a specialist solicitor or other person of equal legal standing.

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                        • #13
                          Haha. Yes I do. Thanks.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Paul_f View Post
                            No, No, No! As you have a statutory periodic tenancy no matter what the landlord wants to think, you only have to serve a minimum one month's Notice to end the tenancy but it must be at the end of a rental period. Remember your statutory rights are not affected just because the landlord thinks that he can hold you to two months' Notice.

                            Parties can mutually agree to remove any clauses from the auspices of the Housing Act 1988 providing it doesn't interfere with the tenant's statutory (therefore, lawful) rights to end the tenancy.
                            Paul_f is right, as [nearly] always. The two month thing only applies within a tenancy period so it can't span two @ one month each.
                            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).

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              If I was 100% right each time I'd be a lawyer! Then again perhaps not!
                              The advice I give should not be construed as a definitive answer, and is without prejudice or liability. You are advised to consult a specialist solicitor or other person of equal legal standing.

                              Comment

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