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Giving notice for periodic tenancy, & damage deposit

(11 Posts)
xandersmom2 Mon 09-Oct-17 20:44:17

I’m hoping someone can verify (or correct!) my understanding of the notice I have to provide to my landlord, as we are about to complete on a house purchase next month.

We had a 6-month AST agreement in 2014; when it expired the letting agent offered us another 6-month agreement but we declined because at the time we had been waiting several weeks for the landlady to repair the heating (winter, 2 kids and no heating, it was just a joy) and we told him that we didn’t want to commit to another fixed period until the heating was running. We verbally agreed with him that the tenancy would just run into a month-to-month tenancy whilst we looked for somewhere else to live, but that if the landlady fixed the heating immediately then we’d sign another tenancy agreement.

Landlady then did fix the heating within days – but the letting agent never came back to us with another agreement and so we just kept our heads down (during this period of discontent we had started to think about buying our own place instead and so still didn’t want to be tied into the rented house). We’ve now been here over 3 years, just running on a month-to-month tenancy. I should say that the letting agent certainly never forgot about us as he was quick to raise the rent every year….

So, we have now exchanged on our own house (hurrah!) and will be completing/moving at the beginning of December. Our rent date is the 27th of each month, so we will need to have some overlap and keep the rented house until 27th December, but I obviously don’t want any more overlap (and expense!) than necessary so I need to make sure I’ve understood the rules properly…..

Having Googled for a while, I think I am right in saying that we must give the letting agent one month’s notice in writing, with the notice period ending on a rent day. So, we must give notice no later than 26th November……is that correct?

Does he have to receive the letter on/before that date or must it just be dated then? (-I notice that every time he writes to give us one month’s notice of the rent going up, the processing and mailing time is always counted in the notice period!)

I actually wouldn’t object to giving them more notice, except for the fact that DH works nights and we need to avoid having to juggle viewings around him being asleep, for as long as possible!

As a second question: there was no inventory when we move in here…we passed the old tenants in the doorway, we gave the letting agent our rent in cash (we paid 6 months up front as we couldn’t provide references because we had previously owned our own house overseas) and he handed us the keys – took about 10 mins altogether. So how will any judgments be made about damage/wear and tear?

This is a 60+ year old house, always been owned by the same family, and they’ve done zero at it for decades (very old kitchen, original ancient toilet, 30-year old carpets, rotten windows etc). We’ve actually improved it significantly at our expense (with the landlady’s permission) and carried out basic repairs and maintenance, repainted most of the inside at least once and will be repainting ‘high traffic’ areas again before we leave etc - so I’m not looking to ‘get away’ with any damage as I truly don’t believe there is any, just wondering how this scenario would be managed in terms of return of deposit.

Phew! This was longer than I anticipated….. thanks for any help

Spam88 Mon 09-Oct-17 21:07:35

I've always given notice by email so you don't have the concern about how long it takes a letter to get there.

In terms of your deposit, the onus is on them to prove you've caused damage. If there's no inventory then they can't do that so they won't be able to make any deductions (if they try and you dispute it I can't see how you wouldn't win).

wowfudge Mon 09-Oct-17 21:59:07

Yes, serve notice by 26 November.

What did your original tenancy agreement state about how notice was to be served? I would post a letter at a post office and obtain proof of posting. This does not mean sending the letter so it has to be signed for, you just have a record you posted it. Allow three working days for delivery. Email or call the agents to tell them as well.

Has your deposit been protected and do you have the details?

You don't have to allow viewings at all. Doesn't matter whether you are there or not.

wowfudge Mon 09-Oct-17 22:00:17

Notice must be received on or before 26 November, so send it in good time.

Twiceover Mon 09-Oct-17 22:10:29

Yes, check the terms of your AST for how notices may be validly served. If first class post, to be served on Monday 27th Nov, you would need to post no later than Thursday 23rd as it will be deemed served on the second business day after posting.

Is your deposit protected and do you have the scheme details?

xandersmom2 Mon 09-Oct-17 22:33:41

Thanks for the replies!

I've just been through our AST again, and nowhere does it say how notice must be served. In fact it doesn't talk about giving notice at all. So we'll just send it by mail to arrive by 26th but thrn follow up with an email to be sure. Belt and braces....!

I do have a letter with details of the deposit scheme but haven't been able to log in as the login process seems to have changed since the letter was sent 3 years ago. Will call them tomorrow to get updated info.

Our AST says we do have to allow viewings in working hours, to include weekends. I don't object in principle but DH works weekends as well, so viewers would get to see him in all his glory........confused

CWG17 Tue 10-Oct-17 09:32:14

Doesn’t matter what your lease says about viewings, you don’t have to allow them if it’s inconvenient to you.

Sounds like landlord hasn’t done you any major favours over the years so I wouldn’t be too worried.

BordersMumNow123 Tue 10-Oct-17 14:54:00

They can't view whenever they want, legally you are entitled to 'quiet enjoyment of your home' regardless of tenancy agreement. Lots of tenancy agreement have little 'loopholes' written in to allow landlords to do certain things but they aren't always legal, tenancy agreements can't supersede law. So you only have to allow viewings when it is OK for you with prior consent.

Most tenants particularly allow viewings if they have a good relationship with landlord etc which doesn't sound like you have.


specialsubject Tue 10-Oct-17 15:05:30

No inventory, no deposit deductions. Is it protected?

Give written notice, sent with a free proof of posting . not signed for. Not email. Not text. Paper. Deemed received two days after sending.

Do not give notice before exchange.

No viewings unless you want them. Contract could say you must hoover daily, that is just as unenforceable.

xandersmom2 Tue 10-Oct-17 15:35:34

Hi specialsubject - it is protected, yes - at least that's what the paperwork says. Guess we will find out soon enough?!

Never had any dealings with the landlady, only the letting agent. He has always told us that it was the landlady 'holding up' repairs, but we don't know that's definitely the case (might have been him just dragging his feet).

We have exchanged some months ago but agreed a delayed completion as our vendors are having a new home built. We'll get the keys to our new place on 30th November, so we should be 'safe' to give notice at end of November to be effective at the end of December (I'd prefer not to be responsible for two houses over the Christmas period but 'oh well').

specialsubject Tue 10-Oct-17 17:41:07

Good news - with exchange done you are safe to give notice.

If you have been given information on the deposit protection it is almost certainly valid, a call to the scheme concerned will confirm.

If you don't want viewings, again just write to the agent saying so.

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