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AIBU in thinking that you shouldn't agree to take over someone's tenancy and change your mind a month after moving in and expect the former tenant to remain on the contract?

(54 Posts)
TenancyTroublesAgain Wed 06-Dec-17 15:38:25

NC for this. Sorry for the length!

I signed a 12 month contract with friends (students) and was looking forward to it until they both practically moved their partners in. I said I didn't want to live with any couples prior to moving in and they agreed, so I signed the contract and they changed their minds on day 1.

One of the couples didn't go to sleep until around 7-8am every day and after months of asking them to stop waking me up at ridiculous hours several times every single night, as well as not taking the piss by having their partners over 5-6 days a week after we agreed that it wouldn't be the case, I had enough and had to move out because I got nowhere by talking to them. I grew to despise the place.

We looked for a replacement and someone who a current tenant already knew was interested. 2 months prior to me moving out they agreed to take over the tenancy. I moved out at the end of October, paid half rent and bills for November and paid the entire entire admin fee to re-do the contract, and the new person moved in early November.

4 weeks after they move in they decide they're not happy with the amount of council tax that has to be paid (not a student therefore liable). Why they or the current tenant who chose to help them with everything didn't look into the amount is beyond me, saying "it's not fair". They now say they most likely won't stay and the former contract will apply with my name on it.

I discovered the new contract had been sent back and forth during this and still not signed because of some issues I'm told, so the old one is still in force with me on it despite the new person agreeing to take over, the landlord accepting them in the house as a tenant, and them paying a share of rent and bills.

AIBU in thinking this is a massive pisstake? I have been haunted by this house since I left 6 weeks ago and was desperate to get away. I've moved elsewhere and have already paid rent and bills on two places.

WhoWants2Know Wed 06-Dec-17 15:40:58

When does the original contract end?

Eatalot Wed 06-Dec-17 15:42:08

Not sure how contracts work but surely new contract with someone has no bearing on the agreed termination of your old contract.

AdalindSchade Wed 06-Dec-17 15:42:56

Do you have anything in writing from the letting agent accepting your notice or confirming that they are taking over the tenancy?
The fact that they have paid rent and (presumably) a deposit means there is a presumption of a contract and I doubt very much that a judge would force you to pay.

Eatalot Wed 06-Dec-17 15:43:37

Surely your contract was terminated so ended thenand you paid admin to do this.

TenancyTroublesAgain Wed 06-Dec-17 15:51:42

I did pay in advance for the contract to be redone, it was posted to the tenants and as of yet remains unsigned because they are disputing a clause or something on it.

There is e-mail communication discussing when the new person is moving in etc. No official notice or termination of prior contract or anything. They were meant to sign the new contract and that was going to be the end of it. sad

I feel helpless, nothing but issues.

TenancyTroublesAgain Wed 06-Dec-17 15:53:26

@AdalindSchade - "The fact that they have paid rent and (presumably) a deposit means there is a presumption of a contract and I doubt very much that a judge would force you to pay."

I thought so too. I hope so!

Herbcake Wed 06-Dec-17 15:59:54

You're fine. Even though the contract wasn't signed, all parties (you, new tenant, old tenant, landlord) had an intention to enter into it and performed the obligations under it (moved in, moved out, paid money). Implied contract.

Who's saying you're liable?

TenancyTroublesAgain Wed 06-Dec-17 16:07:37

Thank you, I hope so.

The current tenant and the landlord is saying "the original agreement will stand with my name on it". Not that they know much, but I'm no expert either. sad

AdalindSchade Wed 06-Dec-17 16:12:20

I doubt your landlord knows what he's talking about either. Write back stating the above facts and that you are no longer liable for the tenancy and try not to worry. The landlord would have to convince a judge that you owe him ongoing rent and I really can't see that happening

QuiteLikely5 Wed 06-Dec-17 16:20:05

Nah they are talking tosh! They entered into a verbal arrangement.

Just find the legislation on google and send them a copy - that should do the trick

TheHodgeoftheHedge Wed 06-Dec-17 16:29:45

And give Shelter a call if you want some formal advice before responding to the landlord and tenant.
Have you had your deposit back?

TenancyTroublesAgain Wed 06-Dec-17 16:31:27

I haven't had my deposit back, they said they were happy to release my full share back to me but couldn't as they had not signed the new agreement. sad

I have tried to call Shelter but have been unable to get through so I've e-mailed.

Thanks smile

TheHodgeoftheHedge Wed 06-Dec-17 16:40:19

Sounds like your landlord is playing silly buggars. Your deposit should be protected - do you know which scheme it is in? Contact them directly and request it back IMMEDIATELY. It is neither here nor there whether someone else has signed a new agreement. You have left your tenancy, you should have your deposit back.

Eatalot Wed 06-Dec-17 16:44:05

If deposit not protected you can claim for 3x amount or 5x cant remember. You should have had a letter from the deposit protection scheme.

Cloudyapples Wed 06-Dec-17 16:52:01

You could try shelter web chat or send a message through their Facebook page

TenancyTroublesAgain Wed 06-Dec-17 17:10:08

@WhoWants2Know - Sorry, June 2018

@TheHodgeoftheHedge - It's protected, I've asked the deposit company for it back or what to do next.

When a new person moved in we were charged to have it protected, the landlord insisted on charging us for their time and the deposit re-protection fee but didn't bother doing it until we asked for the certificate 2 months later! I think that means a possible 1-3x penalty too?

TenancyTroublesAgain Wed 06-Dec-17 17:13:38

(By the above I mean re-protected after the initial protection, which was done correctly).

araiwa Wed 06-Dec-17 17:17:58

Youre dealing with a bunch of amateurs. Stick with it.

Bit foolish not to have a new ast though. Makes it awkward but i think you can prevail

TenancyTroublesAgain Wed 06-Dec-17 17:22:13

@araiwa - The ast was in the post at one point (the landlord went on holiday and delayed sending it) and there was no question about the tenants signing it, until they changed their mind after finding out how much council tax was. sad

araiwa Wed 06-Dec-17 17:24:27

It should have been signed before you moved out but too late now

Make sure you keep all other paperwork as it may help

TheHodgeoftheHedge Wed 06-Dec-17 19:13:10

Wow OP yes they've taken the piss at every stage here. Make sure you mention all
Of that when you talk to shelter and pursue the landlord for every damn penny. There's no way you should be paying a protection "fee" and it should have been protected from the moment you paid it. Not months later. Appalling.

TenancyTroublesAgain Thu 07-Dec-17 00:13:39

Yep, will be collecting all evidence possible. It's in the form of screenshotted emails via the lead tenant from the landlord etc but it's all I have. It all mentions the new person moving in and me moving out though.

The lead tenant had a cheek to say that the new person will have paid MY rent for December if she leaves now because of me becoming tenant again (no chance). I don't think so! It's HER rent!

TenancyTroublesAgain Fri 08-Dec-17 18:02:54

Update: How's my email to the landlord? I sent it yesterday. I will be speaking to the CAB soon as well.

You are under the impression that if new tenant doesn't agree to the new terms of the contract then the old contract will remain with me on it, just because they have now decided that they're not happy about paying the amount of Council Tax required. Why they didn't check the figures before agreeing to take my place is a mystery to me.

I have sought legal advice and as it stands, the old contract with my name on it is superseded by the new implied, verbal agreement whereby you accepted me leaving, accepted new tenant in the house and rent payments were made by them. I understand I am no longer a tenant as at the point of new tenant moving in, irrespective of any written agreement being in dispute. That is a separate matter and not my responsibility. If they move out the onus is on them to find a replacement and cover rent and bill payments in the interim. It doesn't automatically make me a tenant again if they change their mind a month after moving in and paying rent.

In light of the above, I would appreciate the immediate return of my deposit.

4teensandababy Mon 11-Dec-17 11:55:13

I think it's a great email OP!! Did you get a response?

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