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Pobinr
06-02-2010, 07:35 AM
Tenant's not bothering to move out until 2 days into periodic tenancy. The 6 month fixed period ended on 4th Feb. She's moving out today the 6th.
She's ignored emails & never returned phone calls when I tried to explain to her the rent due doesn't stop until she fully vacates the premises. In other words removes her possessions & returns the keys.
She's not let me show any prospective tenants so now there'll be a void period while I show people.
Now that the tenancy has entered the periodic phase by her staying until 6th Feb, am I entitled to another month's rent from 5th Feb to 4th March from her.
Or am I only entitled to 2 days more rent for 5th Feb to 6th Feb ?

PaulF
06-02-2010, 08:11 AM
You're in fact entitled to rent until 4 April as she is obliged to serve a minimum of 1 months Notice to end at the end of a rental period as it's now periodic so she has left without doing so. Whether you wish to enforce this is up to you. I should point out that you shouldn't automatically re-enter the premises until you are sure she has vacated and have the keys. If you accept the keys then you are probably accepting surrender of the tenancy so my previous assertions are therefore unlikely to apply.

Preston
06-02-2010, 08:27 AM
Now that the tenancy has entered the periodic phase by her staying until 6th Feb, am I entitled to another month's rent from 5th Feb to 4th March from her.
Or am I only entitled to 2 days more rent for 5th Feb to 6th Feb ?

Yes, there is no obligation to "apportion" rent, assuming that it is due in advance under your agreement. This still applies even if you accept a surrender. Any tenant surrendering part way through a rental period ought to try to obtain agreement from the landlord that they will pay rent only up to the point that they give up possession. If they do not, the landlord is entitled to the full rent for the period.

One slight word of caution, there have been a few reports on this forum and elsewhere that arbitrators dealing with deposit disputes haven't always fully understood the law in this respect, so if you want to take a belt and braces approach it might be worth you making it clear in writing to the tenant that if she surrenders there will be no apportionment of rent.

Good luck.

Pobinr
07-02-2010, 07:20 AM
You're in fact entitled to rent until 4 April as she is obliged to serve a minimum of 1 months Notice to end at the end of a rental period as it's now periodic so she has left without doing so. Thanks for your replies.
She did give me notice back on 8th Jan that she was going to move out on 5th Feb.
At the time I didn't spot the fact that'd be the 1st day of periodic phase.
She's messed me about & is not moving out until Monday 8th Feb after me having to contact her via her mother as she never answers emails & pretended she wasn't in on two occasions I went round to try & discuss the situation with her !

Over the phone I agreed with her mother she only needed to pay for three more days rent, but now I'm thinking I should have stuck with my right to be paid rent up to March 4th. I guess I could still do that as I never agreed to anything on paper about only charging two more days rent.

Having said that, as she only has to give me a month's notice & she gave notice to me on 8th Jan, is it not the case that she's only liable for rent up to a month from 8th Jan ?

Lawcruncher
07-02-2010, 08:53 AM
1. Was the tenancy for (a) a fixed term or (b) a fixed term which the agreement provided would continue as periodic?

2. Is there any provision in the agreement as to the giving of notice by the tenant?

3. Did you give the tenant any indication that her notice was not accepted?

Pobinr
07-02-2010, 10:43 AM
1. Was the tenancy for (a) a fixed term or (b) a fixed term which the agreement provided would continue as periodic?

(b)

2. Is there any provision in the agreement as to the giving of notice by the tenant?

No it's governed by AST law. She needs to give a month's notice

3. Did you give the tenant any indication that her notice was not accepted?

No

Lawcruncher
07-02-2010, 11:24 AM
If:

(a) the tenancy agreement provided that the tenancy should continue as periodic

and

(b) the tenant gave notice (which she needed to do if the tenancy continued by contractual agreement and notwithstanding the absence of any notice requirement in the tenancy agreement)

and

(c) you gave the tenant no indication that the notice was invalid (if it was)

and

(d) the tenant carried on on the basis that you accepted that the notice was valid

then

I think you have to accept the notice was valid even if it was not.

If she stays on after the period of notice she should of course pay proportionately for the extra days, but I do not think you can ask for more.

The rules applicable to invalid notices to quit are not entirely straightforward, but basically:

A. If a notice is invalid there is no obligation to draw it to the tenant's attention and you are entitled to proceed as if no notice had been given.

B. However, as soon as you start to talk to the tenant and either expressly or impliedly concede that the notice is valid and the tenant relies on that, then the notice is effectively validated.

What this means in practice is that it is always the better policy to deny the validity of a notice at an early stage if you do not want the tenant on rely on it. Asserting a notice is invalid after you have been talking to a tenant about when he going to leave is leaving it too late.