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Scott Taylor
Scott Taylor, Solicitor
Category: UK Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 41
Experience:  18 years practice on the High Street and in the City of London
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We have been given notice by our landlord after one year

Customer Question

Hello,
we have been given notice by our landlord after one year (tenancy agreement of two years) on the reason that he wants to move back. It turns out now that we are looking for another flat, that we have been offered the flat we are still currently living in! Is it legal for a landlord to rent his flat when he mentioned he was getting it back to live in it?
Many thanks
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: UK Property Law
Expert:  Scott Taylor replied 1 year ago.

Dear *****,

I will be pleased to assist you with your query today.

You state that your tenancy agreement is for two years? Is this an agreement for a full two year term and if so what are the break clauses in the Agreement?

In simple terms, a Tenancy for 2 years or more will not qualify as an Assured Shorthold Tenancy (AST) and as such there is greater leeway in the terms of the Tenancy Agreement as to when and how the Landlord can ask you to vacate the dwelling.

Assuming that you are happy that he has given notice correctly, albeit that he may have misled you as to the reasons for it, there is relatively little recourse on your part. A Landlord is not required to give reasons why he wishes to have the property vacant, but it is important that he has served notice on you correctly as set out in the terms of the lease.

I cannot say what provisions your lease has for notice periods as I have not seen it. My initial question above is intended to direct you to the section of your lease which deals with notice periods and break clauses (i.e where either party want to end the lease early). Provided that the Landlord has given whatever notice he needs to (and more importantly when he needs to) under those sections of the lease then he would seem to have acted correctly.

If, for any reason, you do not believe that he has complied with his notice obligations then you are able to go back to the Landlord and say that he has not given you effective notice under the terms of the lease. He must then take steps to end the lease early through the Courts but this will be difficult for him in the absence of any wrongdoing on your part. This may mean that you are able to stay in the property for longer than at present.

As such it is important that you are clear on whether the notice he has given you is in accordance with the terms of the lease you have agreed.

If, however, you have simply mutually agreed to terminate the lease then there will be no recourse, albeit that your Landlord has been underhand as to the reasons for the termination. Whilst this is unfortunate he is not in breach of housing law as far as I can see.

For more information you may wish to visit the very helpful Shelter website at - http://england.shelter.org.uk/get_advice/private_renting

It is an excellent resource for Tenants and they are able to offer free advice as a housing charity in some circumstances.

I hope this deals with your question, and I wish you luck.

Please do not forget to rate my response so that I can close your query and receive my fee.

Kind regards

Scott