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Aston Lawyer
Aston Lawyer, Solicitor
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 10585
Experience:  LLB(HONS) 23 years of experience in dealing with Conveyancing and Property Law
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Hi My housemates and I are in need of some help interpreting

Customer Question

Hi

My housemates and I are in need of some help interpreting the break clause in our lease. We have read and re read and sought online and are now more confused than when we started!

We have a fixed term lease for one year which began on 12 December 2013 and expires on 11th December 2014 subject to the Break clauses which I have pasted below at the bottom of this message.

Due to unforeseen personal circumstances we need to leave London to return home to Australia in July.

Our interpretation of the break clause was that we could break the lease AFTER the first 6 months by giving no less than 2 months written notice (in the manner specified in the clauses below).

Because of this we were planning to give notice effective 11th May and Leave on the 11th July 2014.

After re-reading the clause, discussing it and looking online we are now unsure if we are incorrect in our interpretation , and in fact, the ONLY dates that we could legally break the lease would be by giving notice to break the lease effective 11 April 2014 leaving on 11 June 2014 (and no later). This will mean we are homeless for a month!

Can anyone help on what is the correct interpretation of the clause.

Thanks in advance

Cait
----------------------------------------------
Break Clauses
156.
The Tenant agrees that the Landlord has the right to terminate the Tenancy at the end of the first six months by giving the Tenant not less than two months’ prior notice in writing to end the Agreement. The notice must expire at the end of a relevant period,
being the 11th day of the month. When the notice period expires the Agreement shall cease. This does not affect the right of either the Landlord or the Tenant to pursue their legal remedies against the other for any existing breach of any rights under the
Agreement.

157.
The Landlord agrees that the Tenant has the right to terminate the Tenancy at the end of the first six months by giving the Landlord not less than two month’s prior notice in writing to be served by first class post or hand delivery to the address specified in clause 150 of the Agreement, to end the Tenancy. The notice must be served prior to the date upon which it takes effect but cannot take effect any earlier than 11/04/2014 and cannot expire any earlier than 11/06/2014. Such notice must expire at the end of a relevant period, being the 11th day of the month. When the notice period expires the Agreement shall cease. This does not affect the right of either the Landlord or the Tenant to pursue their legal remedies against the other for any existing breach of any rights under the Agreement.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Property Law
Expert:  Aston Lawyer replied 3 years ago.
Hello and thanks for using Just Answer.

I am Al and am happy to assist you with your enquiry.

You are correct in your thinking in that the break clause is only there to allow you to terminate the Tenancy after 6 months, or else you would have to see the Tenancy through to the end of the 12 month period. The clause has therefore been inserted to allow you to pick whether to stop for 6 months or 12 months. Unfortunately, as if often the case with break clauses, it doesn't allow you to decide to terminate the Tenancy after say 7 or 8 months.

As it is, therefore, legally, you will either have to elect to serve the Notice on 11th April, to end the Tenancy on 11th June, or serve no notice and be responsible for the rent until the end of the 12 month Tenancy.

What I would therefore suggest is that you speak to the Landlord/his Agent to see if he would be willing to let you end the Tenancy in July, giving you an extra month, but I'm afraid he doesn't have to agree to this.

I'm sorry this is not the answer you were looking for, but it sets out the legal position.

Kind Regards
AL
Aston Lawyer and other Property Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Al


 


Thanks for the prompt response. Not what we wanted to hear but much better to understand the clause properly now before its too late!


 


We are going to get in touch with the agent and landlord and discuss tomorrow prior to sending anything in writing and see what can be arranged.


 


Best


Cait.... and Housemates!


 


 

Expert:  Aston Lawyer replied 3 years ago.

Hi Caitlin,

Good luck- shouldn't really advise it as a Solicitor, but if you are heading back to Australia, I'm sure the Landlord won't come chasing you for the rent for the remaining period of your Tenancy, although you do of course stand to lose any Deposit you have paid if you do fly off into the night.

Best Wishes
AL