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Remus2004
Remus2004, Barrister
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 70199
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice.
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i am renting my flat while i am away working in sri lanka.

Resolved Question:

i am renting my flat while i am away working in sri lanka. the tenant has signed a lease which states the move in date as 09.02. i left the keys with my assistant , who arranged
the cleaning and inventory of the flat. the tenant asked him if it was ok to move a few things over to my property before the move in date. he gave them the keys.
i have now found out that the tenants moved in on 30.01 - a full ten days prior to the date stated on the lease.
i no longer trust this tenant, and would like to know how i can collect the rent ten days (i do have a deposit of one months rent)
more importantly, i want them to vacate the property as soon as possible. the lease states that one months notice to terminate the tenancy is required.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Property Law
Expert:  Remus2004 replied 2 years ago.
Thank you question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.

Is this an AST?

Did the agent give them the key?

Is there more to this as the reason you want them out?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

:

the lease the tenant signed is assured shorthold tenancy, months, with the option to terminate the lease by giving one months notice. start date 09.02.15

my assistant gleisson is handling the flat rental - he is not an agent. he believed the tenant when he asked if he could just move some things into the property, prior to moving in on 09.02.15.

he met the tenant at the property on 30.01.15 and gave him a set of keys.

on 31.01.15, the property agent who is showing the house came in with a potential buyer. i had given her the tenants contact details in case she needed to set up viewings after they had moved in on 09.02.15.

she sent me an email that day, telling me that the tenant had already moved in - she said she was sure of this because there were people in their dressing gowns when she arrived.

i want the tenant out because they have lied to me, and manipulated my assistant into giving them the keys before the agreed move in date.

this makes me suspect that they intend to move their disabled mother into the property, as they have been repeatedly asking me to install a shower in the downstairs loo. i told them that i could do this eventually, but not until i was back in the uk to supervise the job.

i pointed out to the tenant that the lease contains a clause that specifically prevents the tenants from altering the property in any way.

the tenant also gave me references, who have not replied to my emails, and i therefore have no landlords insurance in place - this was going to start on 09.02.15.

this property is my only asset - i am selling it so i can buy a smaller property in london, and a much smaller property in sri lanka. i am working here on two different projects as a volunteer, so the rental of the house was essential to my plans here.

please advise

Expert:  Remus2004 replied 2 years ago.

This is not uncommon and is problematical on many occasions if you give the tenant the key early..

Your tenancy agreement is flawed because you cannot get the tenant out on one month’s notice. It’s a statutory requirement that an AST must be least six months (it can be longer) and the landlord must give at least two months notice. The tenant only has to give ones notice must be two.

If you want to get the tenant eligible term you can only do so prepare our arrears of rent there is a substantial breach of the terms of the lease. In that case, you serve them with a section 8 notice to quit if they don’t quit, you have to take them to court. Unfortunately, moving in early, particularly when they been given the key, would not be classed by a court is a substantial breach of the agreement it would seem so by you.

Based upon what has happened the tenant will be able to stay in the property months.

The best you could hope be to give the tenant a section 21 notice now to expire at the end of the six months. That way, at least you know you have served the relevant notice in good time and that the tenant must vacate at the end of six months.

If they don’t vacate at the end of six months, you are still faced with taking them to court to get an order and if they still don’t move out making a further application warrant to get the bailiffs to evict them.

I’m sorry that the answer is unfavourable .

Can I clarify anything ?

Customer: replied 2 years ago.

:

thank you basic information you provided, but your second paragraph is incomprehensible.

can you please re-write that section using proper english, syntax, punctuation and spelling so i can understand it?

thank you

Expert:  Remus2004 replied 2 years ago.

I apologise errors. Purely my bad typing and some PC keyboard error which I cannot explain. Here it is clearer I hope.

Your tenancy agreement is flawed because you cannot get the tenant out on one month’s notice.

It’s a statutory requirement that an AST must be least six months (it can be longer) and the landlord must give at least two months notice.

The tenant only has to give one months notice but landlord's must be two.

If you want to get the tenant out during the term you can only do so of rent or if there is a substantial breach of the terms of the lease.

In that case, you serve them with a section 8 notice to quit and if they don’t quit, you have to take them to court.

Unfortunately, moving in early, particularly when they have been given the key, would not be classed by a court is a substantial breach of the agreement although it would seem so by you.

I have tried to space the lines apart to make easier to read but reason in this thread it will not alow me to do so

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