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Help! Legal advice urgently needed re landlord

22 replies

potentiallytotallyshafted · 29/05/2013 14:07

Sorry, I know this is not the right topic but I am in a total state of panic and need urgent advice.

We rent from a letting agency and have decided to move. We have found a new flat and have paid the deposit. I spoke to our current letting agency last week and the girl there told me on the phone they require 28 days notice when I called to check, so I handed our notice in today in order that we can move house on the 28 June.

When I handed in our notice today I spoke to a different person at our current agency they said that actually the way it works is that they have a two month rolling tenancy period after the first 12 months and you have to hand your notice in on the first 28 days of that so the earliest date we can move out is the 18 August!!!

I have checked the contract and it does indeed say that. However I didn't think to check it before as the girl on the phone said that it was 28 days notice.

The agency admitted they record all calls and will listen to the call from last week where the girl said it was only 28 days notice required, and get back to me.

We are truly fucked if we have to pay up to the 18 August on our current flat plus on our new one. We can't let the new flat go as it took us literally almost a year to find a suitable one for our various needs and within budget. If we have to pay up to 18 August we will owe another nearly 2 grand.

My DH thinks once they have listened to the call where the girl tells me it is 28 days notice they will have to abide by that. I don't, I think they will hold us to written notice.

Can anyone help, I am actually almost on the verge of being sick at this. I know I should have checked the contract but I took the girl at the agency at her word.

OP posts:

HoHoHoNoYouDont · 29/05/2013 14:11

Read this Another person had the same problem. Perhaps they advice given here may help you.


potentiallytotallyshafted · 29/05/2013 14:32

Thanks Hoho. We are in Scotland so not sure if the advice is the same but that did help. Going to call Shelter now for advice.

OP posts:

EhricLovesTeamQhuay · 29/05/2013 15:14

I'm sorry but you do need to give notice for the same day your contract began. However the person gave you entirely wrong information (it's always a calendar month, not 28 days) so fingers crossed they are lenient and let you leave early. They don't have to though.


BettySwollocksandaCrustyRack · 29/05/2013 15:23

i think it's different in Scotland but here yes you have to give written notice on the day that the contract began but my tenants only need to give a month.

Maybe your LL will let you go on the date you move...suppose it depends on whether he will be able to rent the property out again quickly.


sweettooth99 · 29/05/2013 15:36

This reply has been deleted

We've removed this as the OP has privacy concerns.

HappySunflower · 29/05/2013 15:39

What a nightmare, hope you manage to get it sorted out!

Would your new landlord wait a few weeks for you?


NadiaWadia · 29/05/2013 15:49

I am pretty sure it is one calendar month's notice you have to give once you are out of the fixed term. Not two.

But dates are important. What was the exact date you moved in?

(unless it is different in Scotland)


potentiallytotallyshafted · 29/05/2013 16:28

We moved in on the 20th, current two month agreement ends 20th June. So we would have needed to hand in our notice on the 24th May at the latest.What is frustrating is that our current agents took a few days to get the reference back to new agents and if they had done it sooner we would have handed in our notice sooner - it was the only thing holding our application up - before the 20th June. So it's kind of their fault we didn't hand in our notice sooner.

Unfortunately I have checked our contract and it is correct, 28 days notice before the end of each two month agreement. But I just kind of hoped that her telling me something different on the phone would override that.

I phoned Shelter and they were quite unhelpful and said I should have checked my contract, which is all very well, I know that! Had no advice for me other than that. We can't delay on the new flat, there were several applicants and we will lose it otherwise.

OP posts:

BettySwollocksandaCrustyRack · 29/05/2013 16:29

Oh dear- well if your contract states that I suppose it is irrelevant what the girl told you over the phone.

Unless your LL is prepared to let you go earlier then you are just going to have to suck it up unfortunately.

Are the agency asking your LL?


potentiallytotallyshafted · 29/05/2013 16:32

That's the problem though, we don't have the money to just suck it up....

OP posts:

BettySwollocksandaCrustyRack · 29/05/2013 16:35

But unfortunately, if the LL is not accommodating then you don't have a choice.

Annoying as it is, you really should have read your contract before deciding to go for another rental property.

what is the rental market like where you are - is the LL likely to be able to rent it out pretty quickly?


potentiallytotallyshafted · 29/05/2013 16:39

I know that now, I just took the lady on the phone at her word.
No, the LL will take months to rent this place out.
We simply do not have the money to pay two lots of rent.

OP posts:

BettySwollocksandaCrustyRack · 29/05/2013 16:41


Well to be fair, it's not really the Landlords fault that you decided to move on so really, you have to uphold your end of the contract - you won't have any choice.

What will you do then?


potentiallytotallyshafted · 29/05/2013 16:42

I honestly, honestly don't know what we will do. We are committed to new flat but for July and much of august bound to pay rent there and for current flat, I have no idea how we will do that.

OP posts:

BettySwollocksandaCrustyRack · 29/05/2013 16:51

Oh I don't know then....maybe just really try and pin the blame on the agency for giving you bum information.

Presumably if she had told you the correct info then you wouldn't have committed to the new property??? Think you need to play on that and hope for the best.

Good luck!


CloudsAndTrees · 29/05/2013 16:59

Can you get a loan from parents? Or try getting a loan from the bank?


EhricLovesTeamQhuay · 29/05/2013 17:04

Hang on
Has your fixed term tenancy ended? Because if so, tenancy law says that tenants have to give one month notice, and landlords two, if you are in a periodic tenancy. So if you give notice before 20 June you should be able to leave on 20 July. Unless I've misunderstood and you are still in a fixed term tenancy?


EhricLovesTeamQhuay · 29/05/2013 17:07


NadiaWadia · 29/05/2013 17:08

I am sorry the person you spoke to at Shelter was unhelpful.

But it doesn't sound right to me (unless it's because the law is different in Scotland).

In England and Wales I am pretty sure that once out of your fixed term you only have to give one month's notice BUT it must be given on the correct date, so sometimes it can be more like two.

I would suggest you post on, as they are very knowledgeable. Flag up that you are in Scotland. is worth a try too, there are a few experienced landlords that post on there and are willing to give advice.


LIZS · 29/05/2013 17:09

But if an AST rolls the same notice periods apply as in contract - in Englnd, not sure if same applies in Scotland though. Notice is only effective from next payment date . Did the misinformation actually affect when you handed notice in, as by the sounds of it that is actually a red herring as you would move anyway. You best bet is that the agency are sympathetic and go with the verbal advice or that ll finds a tenant to move in asap mitigating you costs.


Noideaatall · 29/05/2013 17:13

Two suggestions. First, grovel to your agency nicely - explain the situation, say you're stuck, please could they do their utmost to get someone else in before your tenancy is up & also maybe ask to speak to the landlord directly? I used to rent out a flat & would have been horrified to think my tenants were in that situation. It doesn't usually take long to find someone else to take a flat.
Alternatively (& not entirely above board perhaps) try & get a temporary tenant for one of the places (student /tourist?) who would cover at least part of the rent if not all...

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