Rent increase procedure- section 13 of 1988 Act

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  • Rent increase procedure- section 13 of 1988 Act

    When my current tenant's 6 month contract ran out and moved to a periodic tenancy i asked my agents to put the rent up for me. The reply i received was that i could not raise the rent until the tenant had been resident in the property for a year, unless i wanted to start with another 6 month contract.
    However, imagine my shock and horror at reading a leaflet from the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister which says 'When a fixed term tenancy ends and the tenancy lapses into a statutory periodic tenancy, you can agree a rent increase with the tenant.'
    So what in hell's name are the agency playing it, it does not state a time period of a year.....so were they just making it up? Or do they have secret inner powers of rustling up odd laws and small print that the Dep. Prime Ministers Office is incapable of.
    Tell me please, i want any excuse to write a nice seething email to my useless letting agents!

  • #2
    Question from ****:

    "Can my landlord just put up the rent? It has had increased by 25% this year."

    Marveen Smith:

    "If he has a fixed term tenancy, that is with a start and end date, and the amount of rent named on the Tenancy Agreement, he can't increase the rent during that period. If the fixed term has lapsed and the tenancy has continued, this is a statutory periodic tenancy, the only legal way he can enforce a rent increase is to service a Section 13 notice under the Housing Act 1988. The tenant gets one period of the tenancy, which is usually one month, to object to the notice by making an application to the Rent Assessment Committee who will examine all the facts. If the landlord has not served such a notice on you, do not pay any increase. However bear in mind if you cannot come to a satisfactory conclusion, he can serve a minimum of 2 months notice on you under Section 21 of the Housing Act 1988 to end the tenancy agreement."

    Comment


    • #3
      Here this thread may be of use to you:

      http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums...ead.php?t=1123


      and here:

      http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums...ead.php?t=1168

      Where paul F says:

      "Susan. Have you not heard of using the Section 13, Form 4B route to raise your rents? It's a very powerful marketing tool, and you don't need to keep drawing up new AST's each time. The tenant has 28 to reply and if they don't the increase is autmatic. If they do appeal you're at liberty to serve a S.21 Notice.

      You can only use this method after the tenant has been in residence for 52 weeks. It's considered onerous to raise rents more often than annually, but it's not illegal. It leaves the opportunity open for the tenant to appeal against the raise, which they are much more likely to do if it goes up after only 6 months."

      Comment


      • #4
        As you can see, you can put the rent up but there may be problems in doing it more frequently than annually. If the tenants are on housing benefit, that is only reviewed annually and the review date is the anniversary of the rent officer's settlement date, not the anniversary of the tenancy.

        Comment


        • #5
          Can landlord increase rent after fixed term expires?

          OK, let me start from the beginning with this one . . .

          Me and two friends rent a property together, it's not a bad property, 4 bed, reasonable decoration etc. etc. We are currently renting it through a letting agent and have been since June 25th this year.

          OK, here it gets complecated. For whatever reasons, the landlord has decided he no longer wants to rent through the letting agent and has offered us a private tennency directly with himself, which we were all ok with as long as it was all drawn up properly etc. etc. This was about 4 weeks ago this was mentioned. We waited for a while, and eventually contacted the landlord today regarding this as we hadn't heard anything for a while. So he said he'd send the documents through ASAP for our approval.

          My housemate gets a phone call about 6:30 this evening, and finds out to his astonishment the landlord is demanding we pay a rent of £800 per month if we want to rent it privately from him. We only currently pay £675 which is about the going rate for property of its type in this area. Naturally we said no we can't afford that, and haven't actually heard anything from him since. So we're now sitting in limbo!!

          I know from reading this site, if I've read it correctly, that we can't be evicted from this property until February 25th, two months after the origenal tenency agreement expires, but I got loads of questions for you guys!!

          1) Does the rent continue at its current rate for those two months?? there will be no tenency agreement in place as the current one expires on december 25th. There's no way he can impose an increased rent on us for two months is there?? On the other side, could we get away with living here free as there's no tenency agreement in place???

          2) what happens to our deposit currently held by the letting agent bearing in mind the landlords agreement with the letting agent runs out on dec 25th same as our tennency agreement.

          3) I know we are supposed to give 4 weeks notice of terminating the agreement, but we're not sure if we can find another property before christmas, and won't know until middle of next week at the earliest, this would mean we can only give 3 full weeks notice, is this allowed as the tenency agreement isn't being renewd, and it's the landlords fault we're in this situation anyway?? Simerly if we stay in this house after dec 25th, and find a property mid january, how much notice do we require to give the land lord we're gettting out, or can we just up and leave as we're outside of the tenecy agreement anyway??

          4) We've got loads of problems with this place, a lot of which I've fixed myself, and invoiced the landlord for (still waiting for my money though) The BIG problem we currently have is NO central heating that works and we never have had, dispite many calls to the landlord and esate agent about this!! We've been really relaxed about it as we all work full time and simply don't have the time to chase them up. (Insted I've actually gone out and brought a gas heater and couple of electric radiators as an easy solution.) I've been informed we might be eligeable for some of our money back in way of compensation from the landlord as this has not been resolved dispite reporting it the day after we moved in and many subsequent times since. Is this true??

          Naturally me and my housemates are a bit confused here, so any help or comments would be appriciated!!

          Many thanks

          Mike.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Mike Redman

            1) Does the rent continue at its current rate for those two months?? there will be no tenency agreement in place as the current one expires on december 25th. There's no way he can impose an increased rent on us for two months is there?? On the other side, could we get away with living here free as there's no tenency agreement in place???

            Yes, same rate, he must serve a Section 13 to increase it(I believe), or you must have signed a new AST. Neither has happened, so no increase. And no you cannot live there rent free, as there is a tenancy agreement, it is merely a periodic tenancy under the same terms as the original AST.

            2) what happens to our deposit currently held by the letting agent bearing in mind the landlords agreement with the letting agent runs out on dec 25th same as our tennency agreement.

            Landlord is responsible for the deposit. If he has problems, he needs to sue the LA, but he is responsible to you for the deposit.

            3) I know we are supposed to give 4 weeks notice of terminating the agreement, but we're not sure if we can find another property before christmas, and won't know until middle of next week at the earliest, this would mean we can only give 3 full weeks notice, is this allowed as the tenency agreement isn't being renewd, and it's the landlords fault we're in this situation anyway?? Simerly if we stay in this house after dec 25th, and find a property mid january, how much notice do we require to give the land lord we're gettting out, or can we just up and leave as we're outside of the tenecy agreement anyway??

            Simply, no. You must give a months notice, due to the periodic tenancy I explained above.


            4) We've got loads of problems with this place, a lot of which I've fixed myself, and invoiced the landlord for (still waiting for my money though) The BIG problem we currently have is NO central heating that works and we never have had, dispite many calls to the landlord and esate agent about this!! We've been really relaxed about it as we all work full time and simply don't have the time to chase them up. (Insted I've actually gone out and brought a gas heater and couple of electric radiators as an easy solution.) I've been informed we might be eligeable for some of our money back in way of compensation from the landlord as this has not been resolved dispite reporting it the day after we moved in and many subsequent times since. Is this true??

            You are eligible certainly for your financial loss. Use your right of offset to deduct money from the rent for any bills incurred so far, and any future bills for repairs of central heating. To play safe, keep two quotes, get one done, and send a copy of one receipt to the LL. Simply deduct the amount from your rent. With regards compensation, I believe you would be on somewhat difficult ground getting compo over and above your financial losses without an explicit agreement from the landlord.

            Naturally me and my housemates are a bit confused here, so any help or comments would be appriciated!!

            Many thanks

            Mike.
            Please get out of this idea that you have no agreement. You do, simply a "month by month extension" of your initial agreement.
            Any posts by myself are my opinion ONLY. They should never be taken as correct or factual without confirmation from a legal professional. All information is given without prejudice or liability.

            Comment


            • #7
              For more detail on your fourth question, see this thread:

              http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums...ead.php?t=1247

              for my thoughts on the exact procedure to follow.
              Any posts by myself are my opinion ONLY. They should never be taken as correct or factual without confirmation from a legal professional. All information is given without prejudice or liability.

              Comment


              • #8
                Many thanks for the above advice. I wasn't aware about 'periodic tenancy' and that agreements can be extended on a month by month basis, so please excuse my naievity. (and my spelling)

                By the looks of things at the moment we're probably going to write to him tomorrow and state we will be leaving the property on the 25th of January, thus 1 months notice begins from the 25th of December. That obviously gives us 2 months from now to find a property which should be easy as there's loads of them on the net in this area at the moment, at good prices as well. seems like December is the month to get a property!

                Was interested to find out about our 'right of offset' We talked about getting the boiler fixed ourselves and deducting it from the rent earlier in the year, but were un-sure where we stood legally on this, now I know!

                Another question though I'm thinking about the 'reasonable wear and tear' clause on fixture and fittings in the property on our agreement. The house has beige carpets in, some of which aren't as beige as they used to be. They're not really grubby, but there are notible wear marks, and minor marks in places. The carpets were more-or-less brand new when we moved in and we knew they were going to cause problems. We've just had them professionally cleaned as they were getting into a bit of a state. The thing we're really worried about though is the beige leather sofa that they left in the property (which they couldn't get out, and we really didn't want!) That has got one mark on it which we can't get out. Who decides what is 'reasonable wear and tear? and who decides how much of our deposit is kept if items are damaged or need replacing?? We're quite worried about this, as none of us have the means to raise the cash for the deposit on a new property, so we're relying on getting virtually all our deposit back from this one.

                We also get the feeling that the landlord is going to try his hardest to keep as much of the money as he can as we're pretty sure he has money trouble as we had the bailiefs turn up for him last month! Shame they couldn't get the leather sofa out!!

                Incidently, when in the proceedings would we actually get the deposit monies back normally??

                Many thanks again!

                Mike.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Remember in addition to the info posted above you can leave at the end of the fixed period and give no notice whatsoever. I am not suggesting you do but just informing you of your right.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by lucid
                    Remember in addition to the info posted above you can leave at the end of the fixed period and give no notice whatsoever. I am not suggesting you do but just informing you of your right.
                    So to clarify, does that mean we can choose right down to the last day to either leave by the 25th of december giving the landlord no notice (as that's the date the fixed agreement runs out) or make a last minute decision to stay and pay another months rent on a periodic tenancy agreement for one month (we would then be into the 2 months notice the landlord has to give us under section 21.)

                    I've got a meeting with my mums solicitor tomorrow (also happens to be her boss who I do a lot of computer work for ) so I'm hoping he can starighten this all out for us, but I like to be as clued up as possible myself first!

                    Mike.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      If the tenancy was for a fixed term of 6 calendar months starting 25th june then I think you'd have to leave on the 24th December handing in the keys. Check your agreement see what it says when the fixed term is exactly.

                      see here
                      http://www.painsmith.co.uk/painsmith.../enforcing.pdf

                      Many Landlords believe that the Tenant has to give notice if he wishes to leave the property at the end of the tenancy Agreement. This may not be correct. The Tenant has contracted for a fixed period, their obligation is to pay the rent and to reside in the property for that period of time but at the end of the contractual period, their obligations terminate and they can leave the property. They have no requirement to give notice to Landlord or Agent. This means that effectively the Tenant can walk into an Agent's office on the last day of the tenancy hand the keys over and leave the property without incurring any further liability for rental payments.

                      Agents and Landlords sometimes try to enforce notice periods on the Tenant by including a clause in the Agreement which specifies that if the Tenant wishes to leave at the end of the contractual term he must give one month's notice of his intention to do so. Is such a clause enforceable? It is very doubtful if any Judge would award a Landlord rent because the tenant failed to give notice. Such a clause would probably be deemed to be unfair and therefore void. The Tenant has contracted for a fixed period, it therefore seems illogical that he gives notice stating he will comply with the terms of the contract by leaving the property.



                      Comment


                      • #12
                        What is discussed in the above quote could it be twisted around so that the tennant should inform the landlord if they intend to stay?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Poj McDodge
                          What is discussed in the above quote could it be twisted around so that the tennant should inform the landlord if they intend to stay?
                          Please explain ??How could what be twisted. This is a quote from an article
                          from solicitors website.

                          No notice need be given at end of fixed term. If its in the AST its not valid and unenforceable. Doesn't mean its not polite to do so. This is an explanantion of statute and law not advice on what to do.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Rent increase on tenancy renewal

                            I have received a letter from my letting agent who are seeking approval from my landlord to get my rent increased exclusive of all bills (currently it's inclusive of c/tax and water rates). I live in a bedsit in a multi-occupancy (house) with one other bedsit and single rooms (all shared the bathroom). One tenant is under the same letting agency as me. The rest are dealt with via the landlord's relative (LR). Now at this moment the LR is not returning the agency or my calls to find out what he wants to do And the agency are also seeking to get off me a contribution of £XX amount towards the renewal fee. So my questions are - as I'm in the last month of the tenancy agreement, what happens if we do not reach a conclusion as I do wish to stay on, as long as certain conditions are met. Plus would it be too much short notice? (have to email a letter within a couple of days). Secondly, is it legal for the tenant to pay towards a renewal fee as I thought it was the landlord's responsibility? Lastly, I have read a little about the Replacement tenancy - would this be applicable to me or will another AST be renewal? Did say I'm clueless, but willing to learn and absorb new info. Many Thanks guys and dolls

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              The short answer is you don't have to sign a new agreement if you don't want to.

                              Alternatives:

                              Option 1:If you want you can leave at the end of the fixed period without having to give notice, although it is polite to warn the agency of your intention.

                              Option 2:If you do not sign a new agreement, the tenenacy becomes periodic. And rolls on from month to month. If you decide not to sign, they may give you notice to quit. They may issue a Section 21 notice, which gives at least 2 months notice. Its possible that they have already issued you one when you first took on the tenancy so check your papers. Its means they can ask you to leave at any time after the fixed term or apply to the courts for eviction. They can only evict you after they have a possession order from the judge. But if you pay your rent on time and are a good tenant, they may not want to loose you and will allow it to stay periodic.

                              Option 3: Negotiate terms that are acceptable to you in the new agreement. If you pay your rent on time and are a good tenant, they may not want to loose you.

                              Regarding payment for renewal...I believe that the agency should have stated to you at the time you started that you would have to contribute to any renewal. They cannot charge you whenever they feel like it. Look at your AST to see if there is anything in there, or any other agreement you have when the agency took you on.
                              All posts in good faith, but do not rely on them

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