Landlords details on Tenancy agreement

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    Landlords details on Tenancy agreement

    If I accept a tenancy agreement online by clicking the 'next' button does this contract become legally binding? Because to my knowledge a tenancy agreement only becomes legally binding if it has been filled out & signed by both parties ( tenant & landlord)

    #2
    A Tenancy Agreement of less than 3 yrs fixed term does not have to in writing nor signed. By clicking any button, could be used as evidence of accepting a verbal or unsigned Contract for supply/occupy, though not a binding AST for fixed term.
    Are you the prospective T?
    If worried, seek elsewhere.

    Comment


      #3
      sn291,

      Your "knowledge" is not accurate - a tenancy agreement can be legally binding without being "filled out and signed by both parties".

      Clicking "next" on a web site can agree a contract, but it's not ideal.
      There has to be intent to form a contract, and clicking a "next" button on a web site isn't an obvious confirmation of intent - but that's more about poor web site design than anything else.
      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


        #4
        Think it would come down to what else is stated relating to clicking "next".

        Eg if it says "by clicking next you agree to all terms and the tenancy..." Onr conclusion, but if it just says " click next to see rent amount and 7 pages of wonderful things the letting agent will do for you 24x7" then another conclusion...

        If you click next, take screenshots of relevant before & after displays.
        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...

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by theartfullodger View Post
          Think it would come down to what else is stated relating to clicking "next".
          Indeed. And it would also relate to how easily it can be proved that the person doing the clicking is in fact an identifiable person. Could any other random person have gone in and done that clicking? It also depends on all the things surrounding the clicking (what other verbal or emailed or written communication had taken place). At the end of the day, if it is confusing as to whether there is or is not an agreement, it is down to a judge to decide.

          In how long from now does this supposed agreement start? If it is still a while away (at least a week or two), the amount lost will be minimal if you simply withdraw and state that there is no agreement (that is if you genuinely did not believe that there was an agreement).

          Comment


            #6
            Context is very much everything.

            A public link that shows the contract with nothing but a next button is very different to what happens on an advanced electronic signatures platform such as DocuSign. In the latter case, the electronic signature generated would be accepted by the court similarly to a physically signed one.
            I am not a lawyer, nor am I licensed to provide any regulated advice. None of my posts should be treated as legal or financial advice.

            I do not answer questions through private messages which should be posted publicly on the forum.

            Comment


              #7
              theartfullodger,

              absolutely nothing is stated by the 'next' button, the layout of the webpage was very confusing & misleading. I wasnt aware that the 'next' button in fact meant that the tenancy agreement had been accepted

              Comment


                #8
                KTC,

                exactly what I thought, I've been trying to withdraw from this property however the agent are stating that the fact that I clicked on 'next', I am by law bound to the tenancy agreement.

                Comment


                  #9
                  to make things clearer I'll try & explain my situation in more detail.

                  I am a student, term begins in a few weeks & I hadn't managed to find a suitable property. I began to panic & managed to find accommodation which houses only students specifically. The contract is a fixed term contract of 12 months. Tenancy commencing on 12th sept.

                  Without viewing the property I paid a reservation fee of £250 to reserve a room, filled application form & I was given a link which lead me to the tenancy agreement.

                  I began reading through the agreement & reached the end of the page, there was a 'next' button, I clicked on the button completely oblivious to the fact that this accepted the tenancy agreement.

                  I tried to contact the estate agents to enquirer about this but I was ignored, few days later I managed to find another house more suitable to me, I have since then tried to withdraw from the the property however they have stated that, the tenancy agreement has been accepted so there's nothing that I can do to resolve this.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    If the property is in England and Wales, the agent can insist all they like, but will find it difficult to do anything about it.
                    As long as you don't move in, the tenancy doesn't start, and the worst thing the agent (and/or landlord) could do is try and sue you for not performing your part of the agreement.

                    Then they'd have to prove two things, that they'd suffered some loss as a result of your not following through on the agreement (which will not be easy) and that there was a valid contract.
                    And if you were confused and hit a button with next on it, it seems very unlikely you intended to form a contract, and that is part of the basic requirements for a valid contract.
                    You shouldn't be able to be tricked into an agreement.
                    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


                      #11
                      jpkeates,

                      thank you for your response, this was very reassuring

                      Comment


                        #12
                        You should report the agency to their redress scheme and ask for the website to be investigated.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Personally I'd report them to trading standards (from the safety of my new preferred place to live).
                          It sounds badly designed as a process and then to try and insist you go through with it...
                          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


                            #14
                            The Landlord does not have to own the property. Who/what does land registry say owns the place?

                            What is the issue behind your question?

                            (It's not uncommon for "guaranteed rent" schemes/scams by letting agents to have tenancy between owner & agent, then AST between agent & actual occupiers)
                            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...

                            Comment


                              #15
                              If it's a limited company, the details will be at companies house.

                              If you send a request to the letting agent in writing asking for the landlords address, they have 21 days to respond otherwise it's a criminal offence (section 1 Landlord & Tenant Act 1985).
                              In reality, there's almost no way to enforce this, but it's still what the law says.

                              You are entitled to an address in England and Wales at which notices can be served on the landlord, and if the agent would allow a summons (for example) to be served there, the tenancy agreement does what it's meant to.
                              If they're using there address to hide the landlord's details, in theory you can suspend paying rent until they give you a valid address (you still owe the rent, though, so don't spend it!).

                              It's quite possible the agent is your landlord.
                              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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