Double renting a room during a notice period, legal? | The Tenants' Voice
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Double renting a room during a notice period, legal?

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225 views 3 replies latest reply: 13 March 2017
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Tenant

Good evening, 

When I arrived in January, I rented a room in an apartment, but I did not sign a contract with the main tenant. I was due to pay my rent on the 2nd of every month. From my research, it seems that therefore we have a periodic tenancy. 

A month ago, I decided to move out and gave the main tenant my notice (around the 15th Feb). We first disagreed on the month notice meaning: I thought he meant that I was paying until the 15th of March but he actually meant that I was supposed to pay until the 2nd of April. We agreed that I was going to pay until the 15th of March. In the meantime, I said to him that he could start the visit of the apartment if we wanted to and I was flexible on the dates, meaning I could move out earlier (On the 2nd of March).  

The main tenant then let me know that he has found someone ready to move in for two weeks from the 2nd of March and asking me if I was still going to make the payment from the 2nd of March until the 15th March. At first, I say yes, but then I realised that he was actually asking me to pay for a place where I am not going to have the keys anymore and won’t have access to the room. The main tenant strongly disagree with me and said that I am liable to pay until the 15th of March, no matter what and no matter if new tenants have moved in until the 2nd of April. 

To sum up, it seems to me that the main tenant is double renting the place, which, to me seems not very legal.

I would be very grateful if someone could provide me with advice and, more importantly, with the relevant law that protects me (or him) as there is no contract to guide us, 


Thank you; 

Ju

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Tenant

The main tenant (who is your intermediate landlord) is not allowed to double rent. This is not legal. 

If you pay rent until a certain date, you’re fully entitled to keep the keys to that room and occupy it until that day. There is no way the tenant can force you out, if you’re still paying rent. 

Furthermore, if you never got a subletting agreement, how are you sure that the main tenant is allowed to let other people rent the property. 

To sublet, you actually need to get permission from the real landlord. If you get a scent that the main tenant is doing this without the landlord’s knowledge or approval, you may use this against them. 

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Tenant

Thank you for your reply Audrey for your answer.

It seems that the main tenant claims that the two weeks that I agreed to pay are not rent but part of the notice period, which I am liabile to pay. I don’t know if it makes a difference?

Ju

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Tenant

Hello, 

You’re not required to pay for serving your notice and leaving the property – it’s your right to do so as long as you follow the rules and you have. You’re only required to pay your rent + bills. Perhaps you never gave the main tenant any deposit and as the end of your tenancy comes closer, they have identified issues with the room you occupied which need to be repaired and restored. 

This is a legitimate reason to request additional money, but the wording you suggest doesn’t mention any repairs or professional services. 

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