Can a tenant change the agreed date to leave a property? (New tenant relied on date).

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    Can a tenant change the agreed date to leave a property? (New tenant relied on date).

    An existing tenant served notice to quit, asking that the property be re-let asap so she could move into her new house. A new tenant was found, wanting to move in asap, and the existing tenant said she wouldn't hold up the move and agreed a date. Now, however, just one day before the new tenant was due to sign the Contract, the existing tenant has said that because the new kitchen in her new house isn't ready yet, she won't leave on the date she previously agreed. The new tenant is moving 250 miles, relied on the date the existing tenant gave, sold her existing house and has removals booked to move in to the property on the previously agreed date. Can the existing tenant do this/change her mind at will when she wanted to be released and agreed a date? Does the new tenant have any legal redress? What's the Landlord's position here?

    Of course tenant CAN change date: But they need to pay the price. Assuming the notice was accepted by landlord (was it? If so how??) or was otherwise valid then on expiry tenant is liable to play double rent..
    Distress for Rent Act 1737 Section 18
    18 Tenants holding after the time they notify for quitting, to pay double rent.

    And whereas great inconveniences have happened and may happen to landlords whose tenants have power to determine their leases, by giving notice to quit the premisses by them holden, and yet refusing to deliver up the possession when the landlord hath agreed with another tenant for the same: from and after the said twenty fourth day of June one thousand seven hundred and thirty eight, in case any tenant or tenants shall give notice of his, her, or their intention to quit the premisses by him, her, or them holden, at a time mentioned in such notice, and shall not accordingly deliver up the possession thereof at the time in such notice contained, that then the said tenant or tenants, his, her, or their executors or administrators, shall from thenceforward pay to the landlord or landlords, lessor or lessors, double the rent or sum which he, she, or they should otherwise have paid, to be levied, sued for, and recovered at the same times and in the same manner as the single rent or sum, before the giving such notice, could be levied, sued for, or recovered; and such double rent or sum shall continue to be paid during all the time such tenant or tenants shall continue in possession as aforesaid.
    That;s clear eh??

    Are you new tenant, agent, landlord ??

    To evict such a tenant should they chose to stay requires court order etc.. very messy..

    New tenant was unwise to trust offer before they had signed tenancy & keys in hand. Landlord/agent - depending on how they described the new tenancy - may be liable...

    How exactly was new tenancy described & in what form (advert, email, verbal,,....)
    I am legally unqualified: If you need to rely on advice check it with a suitable authority - eg a solicitor specialising in landlord/tenant law...


      If the tenant served a valid NTQ, then the tenancy ends on that date.

      The sticking point is that I don't think the tenant can take any action against them, only you can.
      The prospective tenant can sue you, and then you in turn can sue your outgoing tenant.

      I don't see how the prospective tenant could sue you when they have no tenancy agreement with you.

      It's messy.
      Allow tenants to protect their own deposits. I want free money when they do it wrong


        It is unclear whether the new tenant has a claim because it is said that she was about to the sign the contract. However, it is possible that a contract was concluded by correspondence or orally.

        It is also unclear whether what the existing tenant served was a notice to quit because the OP talks about agreeing a date. Has the fixed term expired?


          This is something I've wondered about over the years, and a reason I don't advertise my properties until they're empty. What I lose in void periods, I gain in sleep, as I figure that the incoming tenant may have a good case for getting me to find them alternative accommodation until the outgoing tenant has left.

          Even if a NTQ was submitted, with the outgoing tenant refusing to leave, would it still require a S21 & bailiffs etc. to remove them?




            If the tenancy has been validly brought to an end by a tenant's notice to quit, the exercise of a right to break by the tenant or a deed of surrender, but the tenant does not leave, the landlord can apply to the court for possession without serving any notice.


              Yeah, but good luck getting a judge to make an order to that effect.


                Was Ts NTQ expiry date before or after the later agreed date?
                NTQ is irrevocable but T has right to remain until expiry date. If T remains for longer then charge her mesne profits at 2x daily rent and apply for immediate repo order.
                In this case there is no relevent T info/dates provided by OP


                  Thank you all. I am the new tenant. I have been dealing with a Letting Agent throughout. At first they advised existing tenant was under Statutory Periodic Tenancy Contract and served notice to quit but I was misinformed, in that I found out yesterday afternoon that she was still under an Assured Shorthold Tenancy Contract due to finish in February 2015 and had asked to be released early/asap, hence mention of an 'agreed date'. I have to move from Essex to Cheshire with work. After a house purchase fell through we decided to rent, probably best to get to know the area anyway and we asked a Letting Agent for properties that would accept a dog, up to £1400pcm. On 20 August they sent me the property details by email of a suitable and very nice property. It was sent by a link to their marketing website and it said it was available immediately. We drove from Essex to Cheshire on 21 August to look at it, as the requirement of a physical viewing was compulsory. Existing tenant confirmed to us and Agent that she wanted to go asap and would not hold us up. I said we wanted start date of 29 August because our son was due to start school in the area. She said she had to speak to her husband to confirm and the next day the Letting Agent called me and said she couldn't do the 29 August but that we could move in on 15 September. We confirmed that would work, me & my son would go into a hotel in the interim, and we paid £200 to have Landlord Hub referencing checks carried out. They came back fine and the Letting Agent emailed the contract with a start date of 15 September written in to it, which I was due to sign today; my husband was out of the country but had signed it and posted it to me. It was only when the Letting Agent called existing tenant yesterday to take payment for what they called an impending 'inventory check' that she told them she wouldn't be ready to move. Clearly I don't know if this Letting Agent has done everything properly in terms of the communications between themselves and the existing tenant but I believe, although we have never rented before, that we have not been naïve and that it was OK for us to rely on what the Letting Agent told us. On reflection I recognise our relationship is with the Letting Agent, not the existing tenant or even perhaps the actual Landlord. I'm now trying to find any available/empty properties but the problem is, even a very well crate trained dog that never goes upstairs and so on, is unacceptable to a lot of Landlords. The Letting Agent is reviewing their portfolio too. If I was a Landlord, I wouldn't market a property until it was empty either (daddyjcool). If we suffer financial and/or consequential losses I suppose we will have no choice but to see a solicitor, to see if there is redress against the Letting Agent. Again, thank you all very much for your time and assistance.


                    You are right that you have no claim against the tenant. Your dealings with the agent may be regarded as dealings with the landlord.

                    Unless you can show there is a contract, you have no claim against the agent/landlord, other than a claim against the agent for a full refund of anything you have paid him. If a written agreement has been produced there is a presumption that the parties did not intend to be bound until the agreement was completed. However, the presumption is easily rebutted because a formal agreement is not necessary to create an agreement to let property for a term of three years or less. Such an agreement can be made orally or by an exchange of correspondence. If made orally, there is the difficulty of providing evidence unless confirmed in writing. So, what do you have in writing, including emails and texts?


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