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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 71050
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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My house is rented out to a couple who have a joint lease on

Customer Question

My house is rented out to a couple who have a joint lease on it.
One partner has been convicted of a crime and is awaiting sentence, he will probably go to prison.
The other partner has assured me that she can continue to pay the monthly rent. In that case I am happy about her staying on in the house, but
I want to know if the lease is still valid, and if one partner only remains, will a new lease be required.
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 4 years ago.

Thank you for your question. My name is Jo and I will try to help with this.

Is this an AST please?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

what is an AST?

Expert:  Jo C. replied 4 years ago.
An assured shorthold tenancy agreement.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Yes, sorry I wasnt thinking .

Expert:  Jo C. replied 4 years ago.

The AST is perfectly valid. The fact that he chooses or cannot remain in the property is another matter entirely. It doesn't invalidate the AST.

If this is a standard AST then it will make her jointly and separately liable for the whole house so you can enforce the entire rent against her if you need to do so.

In terms of giving her a new contract, I'm not sure its a good idea. I know it sounds like a good idea but your problem is this. He has an AST allowing to live there. The fact that he cannot is a different point. He cannot be removed just because she would like him to be. You can only remove him by getting a court order which you could easily get but whats the benefit in that to you ?

You can just leave her there on the existing AST, issue a S21 notice when the time is right and then give her a new AST in her sole name if she wants to remain.

If he is willing to sign a release then that is different. Then you could release him and issue a new AST immediately.

Hope this helps. Please let me know if you need more information.

If he is not though there's no point in challenging that from your point of view.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I would particularly like to get out of this AST because I resent paying the agency £100 each month for doing nothing. I changed to self-management but they will not reduce the fee. I thought this might be one way of curtailing it. I would like to keep the woman as she has two children, and she can pay the rent.

I felt they pressured me into signing it in the first place.

Well it is a long story to type out.

I am annoyed that they recommended this couple, even though he was at the time doing a suspended sentence. I didnt know that, and I guess the agency didnt, but surely they could have done better checks on his situation?

I can terminate it as they are out of the initial period of the AST and are now on a month by month basis.

The agency started off badly at the beginning of the AST by charging me £150 for cleaning, when the property was fairly clean. I had said that I did not want to pay any cleaning fees, but they wont refund that money.



Expert:  Jo C. replied 4 years ago.
When does it end please?