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Aston Lawyer
Aston Lawyer, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10342
Experience:  Solicitor LLB (Hons) 23 years of experience in Conveyancing and Property Law
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I need an urgent legal advice in order to clearly understand

Resolved Question:

Hi,
I need an urgent legal advice in order to clearly understand the break clause of my tenancy agreement which I am about the renew for another year:
Property: in London W9
Tenancy agreement: main agreement signed in 2009 with a private Landlord (living in Italy but our contract is UK based), renewed every year since.
This renewal: to be signed to start on October 31st 2015
Exact text of the renewal:
“Fixed term: one year from an including 31st October 2015 to and including 30th October 2015. Either party shall have the right to terminate this agreement by giving the other party not less than two months’ advance written notice. In the case of the Tenant such notice will only be affective if sent by recorded delivery to the Landlord and anticipated by email at***@******.***. This notice can only expire after the first four months of the renewed term. However, in case the tenant provides a suitable candidate (pending personal and financial credentials to be verified by the Landlord) to take over the contract on the same terms and economic conditions agreed hereafter and in the original Agreement, the 4 months break up clause could be waved starting from January 31st, 2015.
My question:
Can I send my termination notice letter on December 31st 2015 in order to terminate (ie. leave the flat) the agreement after 4 months at the end of February 2016 ?
Or do I have to wait until the end of the 4 months (end of Feb) to then send my termination notice letter and terminate the agreement at the end of April 2016 ?
This is very important to understand the legal answer as my relationship with the Landlord is currently rather difficult so I want to be 100% sure.
Best regards
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Aston Lawyer replied 1 year ago.

Hello and thanks for using Just Answer.

My name is ***** ***** am happy to assist you with your enquiry.

Although you are only "renewing" your Tenancy agreement, in the eyes of the law, this new document acts as if it is a new Tenancy. As such, any break clause is not valid if it can be exercised before 6 months has expired.

I therefore assume that the Landlord's Agent has made a mistake here, and the clause should read that you ar eentitled to serve a notice anytime after 4 months (meaning you could then vacate at the end of the 6 month period).

For what it is worth- the wording you have provided does mean that you could serve Notice after 2 months, with the Notice then expiring sometime after the 4 months (meaning you can vacate end of Feb 2016). However, please go back to the Agents and get them to amend the wording so it is legally binding.

I hope this helps, but please let me know if you require any further clarification.

Kind Regards

Al

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hi,

Thanks for your quick answer but I am not satisfied yet with it.

I agree with you that the proposed wording seems to mean that I can leave the property after 4 months (ie. end of Feb 2016).

I don't want to change the text as I prefer having a 4 months break clause instead of a 6 months break clause.

So my question was: in case I send the notice letter at the end of December 2015, am I legally allowed to terminate the tenancy at the end of Feb 2016. In other words, would the Landlord have any chance to force me to stay (or pay) until end of April 2016 ?

I need your answer tonight as my Landlord is chasing me to sign.

Best regards

Mathieu

Expert:  Aston Lawyer replied 1 year ago.

Hi,

Thanks for your reply.

If the wording remains the same, you are indeed entitled to vacate at the end of the 4 month period (28th Feb), provided you have served the break notice on 31st December.

However, if the Landlord served notice on you asking you to leave on 28th Feb, this would be invalid, as a Tenant has the right to remain in a property under an Assured Shorthold tenancy for at least 6 months.

I hope this clarifies the position.

Kind Regards

Al

Kind Regards

Al

Aston Lawyer, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10342
Experience: Solicitor LLB (Hons) 23 years of experience in Conveyancing and Property Law
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