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JimLawyer
JimLawyer, Solicitor
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 5438
Experience:  Senior Associate Solicitor
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I want to terminate my tenancy but my landlord wants me to

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Hi. I want to terminate my tenancy but my landlord wants me to pay him to engage a letting agency and also continue paying rent until he gets a tenant
Assistant: What steps have you taken so far? Have you prepared or filed any paperwork?
Customer: Nothing
Assistant: Where is the property located?
Customer: Bristol
Assistant: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: He is claiming i signed a 12-month lease hence i can't back out.
Customer: replied 4 days ago.
Waiting for your response

Hello, my name is Jim and I am a qualified lawyer happy to help you today.

It is a contract which you have signed with the landlord so you can only back out if you pay the rent in full or if the landlord agrees to release you (normally they would if another tenant could be found to take your place)

 

Customer: replied 4 days ago.
I am not defaulting on the rent. I've paid rent to cover my tenancy until Nov 5th when I want to end my tenancy. Does it mean I have to continue to pay the rent even if he doesn't find anyone to rent the place in the next six months? Also, is it right for him to insist I pay for him to engage the letting agency? Can't he take the payment from my deposit?
I’m afraid it does yes because like I say it’s a contract and he doesn’t have to let you end it. It’s right for him to say you pay for marketing charges to re-let the property. He can’t take it from the deposit as that is designed solely for damage to the property (but would be at their discretion)

Unless there is a break clause which allows you to terminate early of course

Customer: replied 4 days ago.
OK. I will have a look at the contract again and get back to you
No problem thanks
Customer: replied 4 days ago.
Hi Jim, I have read through the contract. The tenancy is for 12 months. However, it is NOT stated in the contract that I can not terminate my tenancy neither am i obliged to pay any re-letting cost or continue paying rent until a new tenant is found. Kindly advise

Yes, the re-letting cost would assume you terminate early though (as the landlord has to try and get another tenant in given you wan to end it early). You can continue paying until they find a new tenant but you can at the same time say there is no provision in the contract to say you must pay to engage a letting agency - then see what they say. Bear in mind he doesn't have to find someone else to rent - he could insist you pay for the remainder of the agreement. It is like any other binding contract.

Customer: replied 4 days ago.
That means that I have to remain in the property for 12 months or continue to pay rent for 12 months.
Customer: replied 4 days ago.
Also, isn't there supposed to be an exit clause?
Customer: replied 4 days ago.
Is a 12-month tenancy short hold?

It can be a rolling contract or fixed term. Yes, 12 months would be an assured shorthold tenancy. Yes, you need to either live there and pay rent or do not live there and still pay for the rest of the term (it is a binding contract like I said) - unless the landlord agrees to early termination

Customer: replied 4 days ago.
Isn't there supposed to be an exit clause?

Do you mean a break clause? That would allow both the landlord and tenant to terminate early during a 12 month term. It is optional in an assured shorthold tenancy.

A fixed term is for say 12 months and ends on a specified date. A rolling tenancy continues until either party gives notice to leave.

Customer: replied 4 days ago.
Thanks so much JimLawyer. I'm intrigued by your perspicacity
Customer: replied 4 days ago.
Guess I'm stuck on paying the re-letting cost

Yes, sorry it's not great news - it's the risk of wanting to get out of a contract earlier than the term.

I hope this answers your question – if so could you please click 5 stars at the top of your screen, that will give me a rating on the site and I can answer any follow up questions at no extra charge.

Many thanks,

Jim

JimLawyer and other Property Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 days ago.
Sure!

I am very grateful, have a good evening

Jim