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WCLawyer
WCLawyer, Attorney
Category: South Africa Law
Satisfied Customers: 15603
Experience:  L.LB (UOVS)
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Hi, I signed fixed term contract with an agent. Now the owner

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Hi, I signed fixed term contract with an agent. Now the owner of the property has given me a notice to vacate. he says he wants to use his property now. What can I do?
Good day.

Is your rent up to date?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Yes, I've been paying rent monthly and on time.

Until when do you have the contract?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

The contract was for a 1 year fixed period from May 2013 to May 2014. The owner has given me a 1 month notice. I must move out at the end of August 2013.


 

Is this a written agreement?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Yes

Is there anything in the agreement that says that either party may terminate the contract within the fixed term, on one months' notice?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

The cancellation clause reads as follows:


Notice of cancellation of the lease will only be accepted with 1 month's written notice by either party, not before 1 May 2014. Any other means will not be accepted and both parties will remain bound to this agreement.

Then he is bound by his own contract and he cannot terminate the lease agreement within the fixed term. It is clear that the contract is intended to last for a full year and then revert to a month to month agreement. He cannot, unilaterally, cancel the agreement.

You need to inform the landlord that you do not accept his cancellation notice and that, in terms of the contract, you are entitled to stay for the full term.

If he brings an application for eviction, you would be able to successfully defend it, since the contract gives you the right to residence in the property until May 2014.

I hope this answers your question, but if you have any further questions, feel free to ask them before you rate. It will not cost you anything extra. If you are satisfied with the answer, kindly click on one of the five faces on the ratings page. I don't get anything for this answer unless you do.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

The fact that the contract was signed by the agent and not the owner, can this render the contract invalid?

If the owner gave the agent a mandate (written or verbal) to sign the lease agreement, then the contract is valid. If the agent signed the contract, pretending she had a mandate, whilst in fact, she did not, the contract would still be valid and the landlord would have to claim his damages from the agent.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thanks a lot!

My pleasure. Please do not forget to rate
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