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LondonlawyerJ, Advocate
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 818
Experience:  Solicitor with over 15 years experience.
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I am renting a property and have just renewed my rental contract

Customer Question

I am renting a property and have just renewed my rental contract for 6 months with a 2 months notice clause. The landlord has now said that he intends to sell the property with my family as sitting tenants and wants to show prospective buyers around the property on Saturday. This day is inconvenient for us as a family. We are paying £4,000 per month in rent. Do we have the right to refuse ? Reschedule for a more convenient date ?

We have the right of first refusal on the property in the contract. The landlord has emailed us the property details from when it was last advertised, but we have not yet responded.

Please advise
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  LondonlawyerJ replied 4 years ago.

LondonlawyerJ :

I am a solicitor with over 15 years experience. I will try to help you with this. What does the tenancy agreement say about the landlord's right of access generally and is there anything specific re: showing prospective buyers around? Will he be showing them round or will an agent?

JACUSTOMER-9kewpanv- :

The agent will be showing them round.

JACUSTOMER-9kewpanv- :

Below is the response from the agent

I can confirm that the Landlord is not intending to terminate the tenancy agreement, he wishes to sell the property to an investor Landlord who will take over the tenancy agreement. In the event of a sale your tenancy will continue undisturbed.

The Landlord has chosen to exercise clause 7.3 of the tenancy agreement which, if he decides to sell the property during the course of the tenancy, gives you the option to purchase. If you choose not to take up the option, naturally he will proceed to market for sale. In this case he is restricted to market to investors only as your tenancy cannot be broken until the natural end of the term; by signing the agreement you were aware that this eventuality might occur and that, should you not take up the offer of first refusal, the Landlord would market for sale and that viewings would be necessary, though we will, of course, use our best endeavours to keep these to a minimum.

I have copied in my colleague Julian De La Poer Beresford, Regional Sales Director who will send you sales particulars for your consideration.

JACUSTOMER-9kewpanv- :

We have a quiet enjoyment clause 3.7 in the contract.

JACUSTOMER-9kewpanv- :

7.3 First Refusal to Purchase
7.3.1 The landlord agrees that once the tenancy has commenced, should he desire the sell the Premises he will give first refusal to the Tenant at a purchase price based on the best valuation given by the agent.
7.3.2 In the event the tenant agrees...
There is no clause regarding in the event the tenant does not agree.

LondonlawyerJ :

does the quiet enjoyment cause do anything more than simply state that you are entitled to quiet enjoyment of the premises?

JACUSTOMER-9kewpanv- :

3.7 The landlord warrants that the Tenant paying the rent and performing and observing the several agreements and conditions on the Tenant's part hereinbefore contained may quiety posses and enjoy the premises during the Tenancy thereof without any interruption by the Landlord or any person rightfully claiming under or in trust for the landlord

LondonlawyerJ :

Thankyou for that. I will answer later today. Hope that is OK.

Expert:  LondonlawyerJ replied 4 years ago.

I take it then that the agreement is silent on the landlord showing prospective buyers around or generally on his entering the premises. It seems that there was some consideration given at the outset of the tenancy to the possibility of the place being sold. If there was any discussion around this at the time and any agreements verbal or otherwise entered into about access then these will affect the answer set out below.
The letter from the agent hints at this possibility but in the section you sent doesn’t say that agreement was reached for you to open up your home for viewings.
If you are a tenant you are entitled to exclusive possession (the agreement may even use this phrase) of your property and to quietly enjoy it. Unless there is a clause or agreement to the contrary you do not have to let anyone into your house. An exception to this is if your landlord needs access to carry out repairs.
Based on what I know you do not have to let an agent or the landlord into your house to show prospective buyers around. If you want to then it is up to you.
I hope this answers your question. Please feel free to ask any follow up questions.