I need to have clarification if the original notice period should have remained with the postponement I requested or that I should have received a written reply stating that this had been completely retracted and that a new notice period would be required. And clarification as to whether I should have been asked for this in writing when I called to hand back the property on 30th Jan and if they can now claim I was responsible for rent from 30th Jan and indeed up to 19th or 26th Feb because this was still part of the new notice period
I could not comply with original notice date as the sub tenant refused to vacate. They were phoned to notify them in early December and I would have told them a court date had been set for 9th Jan 14 with the tenant being moved by end of Jan 14. There was no mention of having to give a further 1 month written notice because this notice was now fully retracted. If I had been told this I would have sent a further brief email confirming a net date no later than end of Jany 14.
Yes the contract demanded written notice of 1 month which they were given the first time for 28th Dec 13.
No further new notices were discussed or requested by the company.
I believed I was postponing a written notice rather than retracting one and they owed me a duty of care to be clear on the consequence of notifying them I could not hand back on the original date
My phonecall to the manager was to delay the handback and not retract, but this manager is now saying he told me in that call I would have to give another written months notice.
I called him in person because he had sent me an email confirming that I wished to vacate the property on 28th December 13.
I had consent to sublet to my tenant and I called to say I was having to evict the tenant as she would not agree to leave by 28th December and had a court date for 9th January and that I would let them know as soon as I would be able to hand back the flat with vacant possession following the court date. My recollection was that I would do this and this was acceptable but I do not recall being told I would need to give new written notice. If I had been told this I would have sent another notice for the end of January 14.
Can I confirm my argument to the agents,which you have clarified above, in the terms that I agree that I verbally perspired the handback date and did not cancel the notice itself , as it was always clear that I would hand the flat back as soon as I had vacant possession after the court decision. I confirmed in my call to the managing agent yesterday that I considered that they should have written to me to confirm that in their eyes I had cancelled the notice completely and that I would be required to give another full month's written notice and not just saying that they told me in that phonecall only, which I am disputing anyway.
Regarding the keys handover. I called on 30th January to ask to give the keys back and to end the tenancy on that date and I was told I would be contacted by another agent they used to do this handover and the checkout. I chased the agent at least twice to ask why I had not been contacted and eventually I received a call with a date to meet at the property and do the handover of keys only on 19th February when I had been asking since 30th Jan.
I was told at one point that I had not given written notice of one month but I disputed this and forwarded the email from the manager sent to me in December acknowledging my notice and which I considered to be my written notice and pointed out the subsequent verbal deferral which they appeared to accept at that time.
I therefore considered the 30th Jan as my end date but they are now saying that my call on 30th Jan was the beginning of a new 1 month notice, although this was now verbal. They now state that the notice period does not have to be written and can be verbal at their discretion and are now saying that they 'allowed' the end date to be 19th Feb as a 'favour' when the keys were handed back but that it should be the end of February or 26th Feb when the checkout was done again which I am disputing.
I agree that either these notices have to be in writing or not and they cannot change the conditions when it suits them: ie that a phonecall to defer can mean the notice is completely cancelled and that a phonecall to hand keys back and end the tenancy becomes the beginning of a 1 month verbal notice period that I did not consent to.
Can you also confirm that if indeed the first written notice was not cancelled by my phonecall as you say it should have been in writing to do this , then what are the ramifications of it not being handed back on 28th Dec but the flat actually being back until the 30th Jan when I asked to hand keys back? Also I had paid rent until the end of Jan 2014 when I considered it to have ended.