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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 71048
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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Dear Sirs,I am negotiating an early end of my 12 months tenancy

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Dear Sirs,
I am negotiating an early end of my 12 months tenancy contract because i have to relocate abroad and by the time i will leave i will have spent 6 months in the property.
I have already agreed to cover all the expenses and fees that the landlord will have to face to find the new tenant through the letting agency because i recognise that these will be "unexpected" expenses since the contract was for 12 months.
The letting agency asked me to refund also the fee that the landlord paid them for the duration of the contract: 16% of the weekly rent times 52, for a total of around £ 4.000
I told them that since by the time i leave, i will have lived in the house for 6 months, there is no reason why she has to be refunded for the entire fee and, since we will look for a new tenant, as soon as the agency will have found one, the landlord would have to pay the same fee to the agency.
Therefore, instead of asking to the landlord to pay again the fee, the agency could only keep the money that has already been paid.
In my eyes this is an amount that i don't have to refund, even if i am asking to terminate the contract early.
What i would like to know is:
is my reasoning correct?
If they keep asking for me to pay that money, what would happen if i just stop paying the rent and let them cover any expenses with my deposit? (i have to leave the country anyway)
Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.
Is there no break clause at the sixth month point?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hi Jo,

thanks for the feedback.

No, and no termination clauses. Here is what the contract says for what regards ***** *****: (which is something i would like to avoid)


  1. If at any time:

    1. (a) the Rent, or any part of it remains unpaid for 14 days after falling due,

      whether formally demanded or not; or

    2. (b) ifanyimportantagreementorobligationoftheTenantisnotcomplied

      with; or

    3. (c) if any of the grounds set out in Schedule 2 of the Housing Act 1988

      (as amended) being grounds 2, 8, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15 or 17 are

      made out (see Definitions);

    the Landlord may give written Notice to the Tenant that the Landlord seeks possession of the Property. If the Tenant does not comply with that Notice the Landlord will bring this Agreement to an end and re-gain possession of the Property by complying with his statutory obligations; obtaining a court order; and re-entering the Property with the County Court Bailiff. When the Bailiff enforces a possession order the Tenancy shall end. This clause does not prejudice any other rights that the Landlord may have in respect of the Tenant’s obligations under this Agreement.

  2. If the Property is destroyed, damaged by fire or other insured risk (not due to the neglect or default of the Tenant) and is unfit for occupation and use the rent or a fair proportion of it according to the nature and extent of the damage sustained is suspended until the Property is fit for occupation and use.

  3. If the Property is not made habitable within one month, either party may terminate this Agreement by giving immediate written notice to the other party.

Thank you.
Your reasoning is absolutely correct. There's no way around the fact that you are in breach of contract. As a result of your breach you are liable for any losses actually incurred by the landlord.
The landlord and his agents are under a duty to mitigate their loss by seeking a replacement and usually courts expect that to be done within a month to 2 months.
When a new tenant moves in the landlord is getting rent and so the agency are being paid. You may be liable to pay for the periods during which the property is empty but no more than that.
It isn't a good idea to refuse to pay rents though. They will just deduct it from your deposit and also it would clearly affect any reference that they subsequently provide.
Can I clarify anything for you?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Thanks a lot.

can i therefore tell them that, after having asked for legal advice, there is no ground for them to keep asking the refund of that fee (provided that a new tenant will be found and i am responsible to pay rent until that moment).


i will pay for any fee and expenses that the landlord will have to face for the new tenancy

I will not pay a single pound related to the fee that the landlord has paid to the agent

Last 2 questions:

1) the agent is saying that, until we find a deal on the money they are asking, they won' put the flat on the market. And i will leave London at the beginning of December and i want to secure the new tenancy asap. What shall i do?

2) i know is bad to say but, if we stick with our opposite positions and we do not settle, is the "bad" reference the only consequence from not paying the rent? They certainly evict me, but in this case is not a problem because i will relocate anyway.

Thanks a lot

What you receive on this site isn't legal advice. It is for entertainment purposes only. If you want to say that you have had legal advice you will need to see a high street solicitor who has had vision of the full case.
1 Well, you can only do what your plans dictate. If he doesn't put the flat on the market then he will have to face the consequences in court.
2 They could sue you for the money but then you would be able to defend it. He can't just not put the flat on the market.
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