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Ash
Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10916
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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My daughter is a student, renting a house with 4 other

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My daughter is a student, renting a house with 4 other students in Brighton. They signed a 12 month tenancy agreement. In July 2015 they received an email asking if they would like a 11.5 month tenancy to which they verbally responded and accepted. This meant that their tenancy would end on 20th August and not 5th September. The agents are notorious at not responding to emails, and they've been emailing for the last 3 months to ask what the final rent will be as it will only be a half month. They finally received a reply last week and they were told that they were liable for the rental up to 5th Sept. They wrote to the agents saying that they had verbally accepted the 11.5 month offer, but the agents replied that they could find no email record of that. There have been a number of disputes over the year - mould and damp, no working cooker for 3 months, old mattresses that were supposed to be replaced at the start of the tenancy, but have only been done in the last couple of months, to list a few. Where do they stand with regard to the agreement? Being students, they have no money, and had all budgeted on moving out on the 20th.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.

Hello my name is ***** ***** I will help you.

Was this agreement before or after the 12 month agreement was signed please?
Alex

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
This was after they signed their tenancy agreement
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.

Thanks. Its bad news then I am afraid, the written agreement takes priority. If they wanted to amend the agreement it should have been confirmed in writing because there needs to be an amendment to the agreement.

This is because the written agreement needs to be amended.

So sadly they are liable unless there was an amendment (in writing) to the written agreement.

She can refuse to pay, but sadly they could then issue proceedings against her and guarantor if applicable.

So sadly unless there was evidence of this verbal agreement they still are liable for the remaining 2 weeks.

She can of course sue for breach of contract and claim loss and damage.

I am sorry if this is not the answer you want and certainly not the one I want to give you, but I have a duty to be honest.

Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?
Alex

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
This is a copy of the email, received 20 July 2015. Their tenancy agreement was signed April 2015.Your landlord would be happy to give an 11 1/2 month tenancy which would end 20th August 2016. Could you confirm whether you would accept this or a 12 month tenancy.So even though this was verbally accepted, they can pretend there was no response and hold them to the original agreement?
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.

Thanks. In that case they can refuse to pay those 2 weeks. If it went to Court then you could show that email to the Judge.

This is notice of change to the agreement. So I think on balance there is a case for 11.5 months.

Does that clarify? Alex

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you Alex. As one of the guarantors, is it acceptable for me to write to the agents stating this case?
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.

Really it should be the tenants but I dont see why not

Does that clarify? Alex

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Just one more question. What happens if the withhold the deposit in lieu of rent? How would they then claim it back? Small claims court?
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.

Yes small claims.

Does that clarify? Alex

Ash and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your help
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.

Happy to help. Alex