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Rent increase during 2 months notice period

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95 views 3 replies latest reply: 24 October 2016
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Tenant

My situation just doesn’t feel right, so I would like to know what you think about this. 

Last May I wrote a contract for 6 months with two months’ notice, my landlord only writes 6 months contracts. 

Now, 1 month before my contract ends, my landlord asked if I want to continue my contract, and I said I would love to. Then she informed me, the rent will be higher for my next contract. I told her, that in that case I will have to think about it. I have decided not to continue just because I got so annoyed with her trick. She says, my choices are to find a new tenant to continue after my 6 months contract as I have 2 months notice p, or I have to continue 6 more months with higher rent. She is not willing to continue for 1 more month with the higher rent. So if I don’t find a new tenant, she will keep my deposit. 

How does this sound to you, I have hard time to believe this is correct. She has few flats and I guess she knows what she is doing but still… doesn’t feel right.

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Tenant

This is not correct. As a tenant on a fixed term contract (for 6 months) you’re entitled to walk out on the last day of the term without further commitment. You can even do it without a notice, however, it’s only polite to provide a one month’s notice. 

My advice is to ask her where the deposit is protected and collect your papers from the tenancy. If you’re positive there is nothing else she can deduct from your deposit, serve your official one month’s notice and tell her you’ll be expecting your full deposit, or raise a dispute with the scheme where your deposit is protected. 

If your deposit is not protected, you basically have her by the…well, it’s not really applicable in this case, but you get it. 

Here are some links for you to check out:

http://www.thetenantsvoice.co.uk/advice_from_us/tenancy-agreements-assured-shorthold-tenancy-ast/

http://www.thetenantsvoice.co.uk/advice_from_us/deposit-protection-schemes/

http://www.thetenantsvoice.co.uk/advice_from_us/deposit-disputes-3/

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Tenant

Thank you very much for your advice.

I have now asked if my deposit is protected, and she wrote me back saying it is not. 

I feel so silly I signed something like this. Basically I have only 2 times a year I could leave this room or I would have to find someone else to live here.

You said I could even walk out after 6 months and get my deposit back. I give you more details just to make sure I have understood right. My contract states it is from “21 May 2016 to 21 November 2016”, “the minimum term for this agreement is of 6 months with two months’ notice” and “you agree to give two months’ notice in advance”. Is that already not correct like you said or is it not correct because she told me 1 month before my 6 months contract ends that the rent is higher? 

I’m still not sure if she is extremely clever to write a contract that I can only end 2 times a year without hunting a new tenant for her. My common sence tells me, that if she takes the rent up, she should have at least followed that 2 months rule too?

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Tenant

Okay, just to make sure you know, I’m not a lawyer or any kind of legal professional, so my advice should not be constituted as legal advice. However, here is an abstract from an article written by Tessa Shepperson, who is one of the most prominent landlord and tenant lawyers in the UK: 

Vacating the property and notice periods

Assuming that the tenants do not want to stay on – what are the rules regarding notice?

Generally landlords will want at least 1 month notice, usually more, so they can arrange for checkout meetings and the like.  However if the tenants leave at or before the end of the fixed term they are not actually obliged to do this.  If the tenancy is for, say, six months, and the tenants leave on the last day, then the tenancy will end by what we lawyers call ‘effluxion of time’.

There is no need for the tenants to give notice as the tenancy (that tenancy) ended then anyway.

Here is the full article: https://www.property118.com/tenancy-agreements-at-the-end-of-the-fixed-term/41326/

As for the deposit, if your landlord admits to not protecting it, you have the strongest leverage there is. 

Here is what I’d do: Tell them the consequences of you claiming for unprotected deposit and demand you be allowed to move out and receive your deposit in full.

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