Tenant wants LL Reference but has not found a replacement yet..

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    #16
    Originally posted by elniinio View Post
    There's no duty to mitigate loss during the fixed term. Is this in a house with several rooms let on individual agreements, or is the tenant 'joint and several' with other sharers? Why does want to leave 2 months in to a 12 month fixed term?
    Sorry could you clarify re no duty to mitigate loss? Yes as previously posted the room are let individually

    In answer to your question, it's hard to know what sort of reference you'd want to give - on face value it isn't a great tenant that wants to leave during the fixed term, and so early into the term at that.
    That's true. I'm not sure perhaps she doesn't get along with the one or both of the other male tenants?

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      #17
      Originally posted by andybenw View Post
      Why not negotiate a fee for early surrender to cover readvertising costs and void period.
      How much would you be asking?

      I have already told her I am prepared to release her subject to her finding a suitable replacement which we vet and do credit checks etc via Homelet..

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        #18
        Originally posted by jpkeates View Post
        Essentially (in my view) references are useless.
        In your view perhaps, but certainly not in the case of many agents/landlords who will be providing accommodation for your former tenants!

        People rarely say anything negative just to be on the safe side.
        If there is anything negative, it could easily be a result of the landlord's action (lots of landlord tenant relations break down at the end with a notice / deposit return dispute)
        Positive references are often used to help a troublesome tenant find somewhere else.
        I accept all that of course, but your policy does seem unduly and unnecessarily harsh, especially on (presumably?) the majority of your outgoing tenants who have behaved impeccably. Most reference requests I get are pretty straightforward, asking for basic, specific info like dates, amount of rent, whether the tenant was in arrears etc; and it seems a bit churlish to me to decline.

        It's never been an issue for a tenant as far as I know - no one's ever asked me to reconsider.
        I'm quite surprised at that. I've never had a reference response like that, but am wondering what I'd do if faced with one... I can't help thinking that it would at least get my antennae twitching.

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          #19
          To be honest, I get asked very rarely.
          It's possible someone simply calls my agent and asks them questions.

          It honestly hasn't been an issue.
          If a tenant told me it might make the difference between them getting a property or not, I'm not so rigid that I wouldn't normally try and help.
          When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
          Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

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            #20
            Originally posted by sparkie View Post
            What I do not want her to do is sign another tenancy agreement after I give her a reference and then abandon the flat and stop paying rent before a replacement is found. I do not want to have to go chasing for unpaid rent and all the hassles it entails. What can be done to avoid this from happening?
            You could perhaps suggest a reference in exchange for a tenancy surrender but you can't prevent her stopping payments if that's her intention

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              #21
              Originally posted by sparkie View Post
              What I do not want her to do is sign another tenancy agreement after I give her a reference and then abandon the flat and stop paying rent before a replacement is found. I do not want to have to go chasing for unpaid rent and all the hassles it entails. What can be done to avoid this from happening?
              The short and practical answer is: not a lot.

              When a tenant asks to be released from a fixed term contract the bottom line is that the landlord is in control and can decline the request. However, letting is a business and a landlord needs to take a pragmatic approach and consider his options with a view to minimising his losses. In a case where a tenant needs to move the chances are that the tenant will stop paying the rent.

              "You can go when you find a new tenant" arrangements often end in tears, usually because both parties have different ideas of what was agreed. Much better to agree a clean break with a surrender with the tenant paying a premium. The premium needs to be a reasonable sum. If you pitch it too high the tenant will baulk at agreeing it. You need to think in terms of covering at least the expected void and reletting expenses. Obviously there is a risk, but you might come out with a profit.

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                #22
                +1

                sparkike, you have been a Forum member since 2008 and started 52 new threads, app with many relating to T procedural Qs.

                This T signed a new fixed term AST, which has 10 months to run.
                You could require payment for full term for accepting her surrender - she is liklely to just vacate, or you can estimate you can find a replacement in 2 months with adequate advertising, so offer surrender for 2 months rent + your advertising cost. End her T with Deed of Surrender, on day she pays/vacates.

                LLs dislike voids, but some are inevitable. This way, you win if finding a new vetted T in ~2 months, lose slightly if you only apply same effort as her.

                Your (financial) decision!

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                  #23
                  Originally posted by mariner View Post
                  +1

                  You could require payment for full term for accepting her surrender - she is liklely to just vacate, or you can estimate you can find a replacement in 2 months with adequate advertising, so offer surrender for 2 months rent + your advertising cost. End her T with Deed of Surrender, on day she pays/vacates.
                  I have said I would release her when we find a suitable/vetted candidate to take over her room. Would she be prepared to pay 2 months rent as surrender? As in she can leave at the end of this month but pay for July and August. But, why would I take that risk on (if I couldn't find a replacement in that two months). Where as if I let her find a replacement there is little risk, assuming she doesn't just up and go. And stop paying rent.

                  I guess my original question kind of remain unanswered...

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                    #24
                    If your original question is: Can I give a reference for someone who is still a tenant? the answer is that you can.

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                      #25
                      The practical upshot of this is that you have someone who signed a 12 month agreement and want's to get out of it.
                      If they move away before the end of 12 months and stop paying rent, what are you going to do about it?

                      Agree she will leave when you have a replacement if that happens sooner than is convenient.
                      Advertise the place and get a new tenant in.
                      Don't expect the leaving tenant to find a replacement, they're not a landlord and won't have a clue.
                      And all they'll care about is a warm body to move in so they can move out, you're going to be a lot more fussy than they are.
                      When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
                      Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

                      Comment


                        #26
                        Originally posted by Lawcruncher View Post
                        If your original question is: Can I give a reference for someone who is still a tenant? the answer is that you can.
                        Having heard the various views I'm inclined to give her a reference only once a replacement has signed on for her room. Otherwise by giving her a reference now/beforehand makes it too easy for her to move out and stop paying rent.

                        Comment


                          #27
                          Originally posted by jpkeates View Post
                          The practical upshot of this is that you have someone who signed a 12 month agreement and want's to get out of it.
                          If they move away before the end of 12 months and stop paying rent, what are you going to do about it?
                          Inform Homelet who is one of the larger tenant referencing companies. So this can be a red flag if another LL in the future vets her via Homelet, assuming Homelet do anything with this information.

                          The other option is to get a debt collection agency on the case? - I'm assuming LLs here have used some.. If so are they worth trying?

                          The last resort would be to hire a solicitor to take her to court?

                          Agree she will leave when you have a replacement if that happens sooner than is convenient.
                          Advertise the place and get a new tenant in.
                          Don't expect the leaving tenant to find a replacement, they're not a landlord and won't have a clue.
                          And all they'll care about is a warm body to move in so they can move out, you're going to be a lot more fussy than they are.
                          This is good advice. I was going to leave to her to advertise, but I think you are right. Take control, do the checks and vetting, advertise and manage the process.

                          Comment


                            #28
                            Originally posted by sparkie View Post
                            Inform Homelet who is one of the larger tenant referencing companies. So this can be a red flag if another LL in the future vets her via Homelet, assuming Homelet do anything with this information.

                            The other option is to get a debt collection agency on the case? - I'm assuming LLs here have used some.. If so are they worth trying?

                            The last resort would be to hire a solicitor to take her to court?
                            Any advice?

                            Comment


                              #29
                              Originally posted by sparkie View Post
                              I was going to leave to her to advertise, but I think you are right. Take control, do the checks and vetting, advertise and manage the process.
                              This is where you may start to run into difficulty. If you do the advertising and the tenant leaves you will have to conduct the viewing. Once you start doing that (if not before) there is an assumption that you have taken back control of the premises and accepted a surrender. As with much in BTL you need to keep things simple. Either:

                              (a) Allow the tenancy to continue and let the tenant find a replacement; or,

                              (b) Accept a surrender and relet.

                              It is a difficult decision. The danger of (a) is that the tenant will stop paying and all that that entails. The danger of (b) is that you will not relet quickly. If you fudge it there is a danger of thinking you have the situation sorted when you do not.

                              Comment


                                #30
                                While you are right to point out the disadvantages, option b) leaves the landlord in control, while a) leaves the landlord in partial control.

                                Being sorted would be ideal, being in control is better than not being in control.
                                Voids are inevitable in a letting business, once a tenant decides to leave, there's not much a landlord can do except make sure they are minimally inconvenienced.

                                I don't know many people who would be able to find money to properly compensate a landlord for exiting a commitment they have made.
                                The landlord is perfectly entitled to claim what they're entitled to, but, in real life, it probably isn't going to happen, and fighting reality (even when you're right) is just wearying.
                                When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
                                Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

                                Comment

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