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rdliser
05-03-2007, 10:50 AM
I've been renting a property since July 2006, I signed up with a 6 month contract which ran out at the end of December and as I'm currently in the process of purchasing a property, so I agreed to go to a rolling contract as I didn't want to commit to another six months.

Things were going ok until I get a phone call out of the blue on friday 2nd saying that their the new owner of the property and the house exchange was completed on 2nd March.

The new landlord is happy for us to stay and also agreed to give us a rolling contract as we're only going to be there 1-3 months (depending on our house completing). She wants us to sign a new contract and is requesting deposit money and full months rent. However my old landlord has the rent money already paid up to the end March and he also holds my deposit.

I've requested the money back from the old landlord, but I'm in a bit of a squeeze, £1750 is held by my old landlord and the new one is requesting £1800. I've advised I cannot pay the new landlord in full until I get the money from the previous, but I'm afraid I'll have trouble getting them funds back from the old landlord as he wasn't ever reliable before. Also he must be fairly dodgy, as he chased me up on paying rent on 27th feb and he knew he'd be completing on 2nd march.

Legally should I be responsible for claiming back money and passing on or should it be between the old and new landlord to resolve, as I've paid my rent and deposit up to the end of March.

jeffrey
05-03-2007, 10:52 AM
First, do NOT rely on telephone call.
Demand old L's WRITTEN authority PLUS statutory Notices (under s.3 of LTA 1985 and s.48 of LTA 1987). Only then should you treat supposed new L as entitled.

rdliser
05-03-2007, 11:05 AM
I've seen a letter from the agency confirming the completion of the property as the new landlord brought that round last night, and the old landlord has confirm verbally the sale of the property has gone through and has agreed to pass the funds back to us, but as yet nothing has come back.

justaboutsane
05-03-2007, 11:17 AM
Old LL should pay deposit to new LL and also rent due from when property completes to end of March! YOu should not get involved in the transfer until you are told in writing that you should pay the new LL! If the new LL wants more Deposit its tough!

rdliser
05-03-2007, 11:26 AM
Is that how legally it stands? I've hear this is normally how it happens, but do I have the right to refuse to pay new landlord. Currently the old landlord is trying to pass the money directly to me, should I contact him and advise to pass the funds directly to the new landlord ?

Also is my old contract still active? even though the owner has changed hands.

jeffrey
05-03-2007, 11:35 AM
Is that how legally it stands? I've hear this is normally how it happens, but do I have the right to refuse to pay new landlord. Currently the old landlord is trying to pass the money directly to me, should I contact him and advise to pass the funds directly to the new landlord ?

Also is my old contract still active? even though the owner has changed hands.

Contract is still valid. That's why you need proper evidence that new person has acquired from old L.

rdliser
05-03-2007, 11:39 AM
Should I request a letter from the new landlord solicitor confirming she is the new owner ?

jeffrey
05-03-2007, 11:45 AM
Should I request a letter from the new landlord solicitor confirming she is the new owner ?

Again: you need Notices from them under s.3 of LTA 1985 and s.48 of LTA 1987: not just a letter.

Bel
05-03-2007, 11:52 AM
As Jeffrey indicates; the landlord cannot legally demand rent from you until he has served the statutory notices. A judge would uphold this. So you will not technically have any arrears until he does.

If the old Landlord wants to give you your money back; take it !! At least you know it was given back. Then do as appropriate.

P.Pilcher
05-03-2007, 12:50 PM
Normally, when a tenanted property is sold the contract of sale exchanged between vendor and purchaser does not offer the purchaser vacant possession as it normally would because of the presence of the tenant. The deposit and advance rent paid by the tenant is accounted for in the completion statement when the actual transfer of the property between owners takes place, thus the new landlord will have received the tenant's deposit and advance rent on buying the property. On receiving the notices referred to above, the tenant then continues to pay the usual rent on the normal rent day to his new landlord.

The fact that this was not done in this instance and the lack of a letter/notices from the vendor's solicitor to the tenant indicating change of ownership and landlord would suggest that said solicitor was unaware of the tenant's presence.
I must admit that I would tend to insist that the old landlord pay the deposit directly to the new one and not get involved. However what is certain is that the tenant has at least two months security of tenure plus another month if the new landlord decides to get nasty while the wheels of justice grind slowly away. Let's hope that the new house completion will take place in the anticipated timescale.

P.P.

rdliser
05-03-2007, 13:11 PM
Thanks for everyone advise, I've advised my new landlord to collect the funds from my old landlord and it's her problem not mine, as I've paid rent to the end of March.

Also as my old contract states £875 rent a month, so I'll be letting her know she cannot increase to £900 until she gives me two months notice and starts a new contract, and that's if I'm even around by then.:D

P.Pilcher
05-03-2007, 16:08 PM
Be slightly careful here - if she increases the rent under section 13 of the housing act, she must give you one month's notice of the proposed increase. She can however give you two month's notice to leave and after this offer you a new six month AST at any rent she likes. However, under your circumstances, as you say, it doesn't really matter.

P.P.

rdliser
05-03-2007, 16:18 PM
I read she has to file a S3 form to me as notification of change of ownership. Is this a form, or is it just a letter informing us of her name and address, as she's txt me those but I'm not sure if that's correct.

Also she has requested the difference between the old rent and new rent, so she should get £875 + £875 from the old landlord and now she is requesting the payment should be £900 + £900, hence additional £50.

I have advised she has to give us 1 full month notice to increase the rent so nothing is owed and if she wants to increase the rent then one full months notice is needed, which would then be payment for end april for may.

jeffrey
05-03-2007, 16:56 PM
Sorry, but my two previous explanations re s.3/s.48 will have to do. Please read them.

thesaint
05-03-2007, 17:59 PM
I do not think that a court would treat a text message as a legal document.

I would suggest you pay your rent as normal and let your new landlady do the running around sorting out forms/advance rent/deposit/etc.