How To Renew A Tenancy Agreement

I’m surprised I haven’t covered this incredibly mundane issue already, but apparently this one slipped through the net (so I’ve been hastily informed by a rather disgruntled reader that is under the impression I’m running a subscription based landlord support service here and acting like I swindled him out of money. Dickhead!).

Thinking about it, I probably haven’t dedicated an entire post on the matter because it’s already been covered 100 times over by many reputable websites. However, since it’s a Wednesday night and I have nothing to do but scratch dust particles off my balls (it’s been a dry week) and aimlessly watch my Twitter stream get filled with garbage that I couldn’t give a shit about, I thought I’d go ahead and answer the question from my point of view, while also including additional information that I’ve noticed lack from the other articles I’ve read on the topic.

Page contents:

Renewal options available

Most landlords will be pondering “how to” towards the end of a tenancy.

There are generally two common ways of renewing an existing tenancy. The good news is both processes are pretty straight forward, so even if you aren’t the sharpest tool in the shed, you’ll be in safe hands. But the simplistic nature means I’m going to have one hell of a time making this post seem compelling/engaging, so try to bear with me without crashing out and drooling like a rabid dog.

1) Sign a new tenancy agreement
It’s really as simple as it sounds. Just get a copy of a tenancy agreement and get it signed, and date it from the day the old tenancy ends.

Many landlords assume that this is the only way to renew a tenancy. It’s not, but it’s probably the most common.

This maybe the perfect time to re-tweak your tenancy agreement if the current one failed you by containing insufficient clauses (for whatever reason).

2) Do nothing, let it roll
Yeah, seriously, do nothing, just let the good times roll.

When a tenancy isn’t terminated and new contracts aren’t signed while the tenant remains in the property, the tenancy becomes what is known as a periodic tenancy (or “rolling tenancy”). It’s perfectly legit.

All the same terms and conditions in the expiring tenancy agreement will still apply, but the only difference is that the new tenancy agreement becomes periodic. The “period” is dependent on how frequently the rent is paid. For example, if the rent is paid on a PCM (Per Calendar Month) basis, then the contract will run on a month-by-month basis. Same principle applies if the rent is paid on a weekly or bi-weekly basis.

This essentially means the tenant and landlord are NOT tied into a long-term contract e.g. 12 months. Once the tenancy has become periodic, the tenant can give 1 month’s notice (assuming it’s a monthly rolling contract), and the landlord is allowed to give 2 months notice (landlords are always required to give a minimum of 2 months notice by law).

So that pretty much sums up the two options. Pretty simple, innit?

You still with me? Good. Let’s keep going…

The less common options

There are a few other ways of renewing a tenancy, which are just as legitimate as the 2 approaches listed above, but perhaps not as commonly used.

1) Memorandum
You can also use a Memorandum which is a 1 page document, which extends the contracts terms and condition (the new end date should be specified) but can also include clauses such as rent increases and break clauses.

2) Sign a contractual periodic tenancy
At the end of the tenancy, instead of starting a new fixed term contract, for example, for 6 or 12 months, you can start a “contractual periodic tenancy”, which is a new contract which specifies the term as being just one month (or a week) and then just allowing it to run on.

The difference between a “periodic tenancy” and a “contractual periodic tenancy” is that a contractual periodic tenancy exists when both landlord and tenant agree in contract that the tenancy will become a “contractual periodic tenancy”, as opposed to allowing it to naturally roll into one without any mention of it (a fixed term contract will naturally roll into a periodic tenancy if no other action is taken). There are a few other ways of starting a contractual periodic tenancy, more details available on the periodic tenancy post.

There are actually some advantages of going down the contractual route over the non-contractual, which Hayley discusses in comment #33 (scroll down), it is also discussed on the periodic tenancy post, which I linked to above. In brief, the advantages relate to landlords avoiding the responsibility for council tax expenses when a tenant has been served an eviction notice, otherwise held responsible. It’s a bit of an odd one.

Tenancy renewal fees

If you used a high-street letting agent to find your tenant and you’re wanting to renew a tenancy, the odds are the agency is rubbing their grubby little mitts together because they’re on the verge of slapping you with what is known as a tenancy renewal fee. In “theory”, the fee covers the admin costs for renewing the tenancy and retaining your tenant.

Agents typically charge anywhere between £100 – £200 for the tenancy to get renewed. Some agents even calculate the fee based on a percentage taken from the rental income (the fees some landlords have been subjected to by that formula is actually terrifying).

I know what you’re all thinking, “what admin work is actually required to renew a tenancy, which warrants that price?” That’s a good question and one I’ve also asked on several occasions. I’ve been told that walking over to a photocopy machine and pressing the ‘copy’ button isn’t as easy as it looks; pressing the wrong button(s) can lead to carnage. Not to mention, the immense strain caused by lifting the lid is unimaginable.

Poor agents, it must be exasperating for them.

Basically, the fee is unjustifiable and total bullshit, in my opinion.

If the fee applies to you and you’re reluctant to pay (which would make you relatively normal), you may want to allow the tenancy to roll into a periodic tenancy (as opposed to getting a new tenancy agreement signed), because then the agent isn’t subjected to any of that gruelling “admin” work. I’ve previously escaped from paying a renewal fee that way.

Be wary, some agents will actually try and force you to renew the contract just so they can charge the fee, implying it’s the only and/or safest option. That is of course non-sense. Stay strong and resist if you’re happy for the tenancy to roll.

It’s also worth checking your landlord/agent contract to determine if the fees apply at all, because it must be clearly stated in order for it to be enforceable.

Changing the terms and conditions / rent increases

When you renew the tenancy, you may want to make changes to the terms and conditions. For example, a common change is increasing rent.

You have a few options here…

  • 1) Create a new tenancy agreement and add the new terms and conditions in there (this will create a new fixed term tenancy).
  • 2) If the only change is a rent increase, you can serve a rent increase notice and the new tenancy can roll into a periodic tenancy.
  • 3) Create a separate counterpart document that contains the new terms. Endure the document is dated and signed by both landlord and tenant. This can apply for both periodic and fixed term tenancies.

    It’s important to note that all terms and conditions in tenancy agreements are subject to the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations, so don’t just add any old clause, because it may not be enforceable. If you’re unsure, check with a solicitor or landlord law specialist.

On a sidenote, in case I’ve just planted a rotten seed in your mouldy cranium and encouraged you to unnecessarily jack up your prices, you should carefully consider whether or not you really need to increase your tenant’s rent. Don’t just unfairly do it for the sake of it, especially if you have good tenants.

It’s always amazing how easily and quickly a landlord can be encouraged to increase rates.

Prescribed Information

Some of you maybe aware that due to a ridiculous case (Superstrike v. Rodrigues), landlords were required to re-serve the tenancy deposit prescribed information to the tenants when a tenancy became periodic. Thankfully, as of 30th March 2015, landlords are no longer required to re-serve the PI if the deposit was protected and the prescribed information was served during the original fixed term- once will do.

From October 2015, where tenancies in England are “renewed” (this does NOT include tenancies that roll onto a periodic tenancy), the landlord must serve the following:

I prefer periodic tenancies

From a personal standpoint, I prefer allowing tenancies to roll into periodic tenancies, as opposed to getting new fixed contracts signed. I prefer the flexibility of periodic tenancies; problematic tenants can get dealt with quicker since I’m not tied into a long-term contract. Although, I do appreciate that some landlords find great appeal in securing good tenants, knowing they won’t have to find replacements for X amount of time.

However, as I recently discussed in a blog post titled, if your tenant wants to leave early, it’s often easier to just allow them to leave if That’s their desire, even if it is during a fixed period. On that basis, it kind of makes the purpose of the new fixed term contract redundant. But it’s your call. However, I will say this, if there’s one lesson I’ve painfully learned from being a landlord, it’s that a good tenant can quickly turn into a tenant from hell at the flick of a switch. In those cases, I want to be able to serve a section 21 notice ASAP. You NEVER know what’s around the corner.

Do you really want to renew the tenancy?

Needless to say, you should always carefully consider before dishing out new tenancy agreements. Seems like such an obvious and stupid thing to say, but you might be surprised at how many landlords renew tenancies with awful tenants just for the sake of convenience. The last thing you want to do is commit yourself to a tenancy for 6+ months with someone that makes you nervous.

So what’s your preferred poison, renewing tenancies or periodic, and why? Hit me with it!

57 Comments- Join The Conversation...

Showing 7 - 57 comments (out of 57)
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jerry 27th November, 2014 @ 16:35

'Let it roll'? - err, sheer stupidity methinks.

Always, always, always be in control and serve a Termination Notice 8 weeks prior to the end of a fixed term. By all means
let the tenants continue to be in occupation but on your terms,
not there's.

Superstrike is a wake-up call to all landlords; it is imperative to
advance a claim against the deposit at the end of the fixed term. If you don't and let it just roll forward you will be consenting to
a nil payment set-off agreement which is binding. 'Tenancy' does NOT equate with 'occupancy' since HA 1988. In advancing any claim
on a deposit landlords have to show that the damage obtained was caused by the tenant and that it occurred during the term of the tenancy.

Checkout para 38 of the Superstrike judgement; landlords are OBLIGATED to account to the tenant for the deposit at the end of the fixed term. Then Judiciary have stated their position, be warned

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The Landlord Avatar
The Landlord 27th November, 2014 @ 16:59

@Jerry

Serving a section 21 towards the end of a tenancy when you want the tenancy to continue doesn't make sense at all, methinks. It will probably just alarm the tenants. The landlord will still need to give 2 months notice.

Allowing the tenancy to become periodic doesn't make the landlord lose control. If anything, it allows for more control.

In any case, the Superstrike case was regarding tenancies that started BEFORE 2007 (before the deposit scheme was introduced), which then became periodic.

http://www.depositprotection.com/documents/superstrike-vs-rodrigues-guidance-on-implications.pdf

"The recent Court of Appeal case of Superstrike vs. Rodrigues concerns an assured shorthold tenancy that was created in January 2007 prior to the introduction of mandatory tenancy deposit protection on 6 April 2007. The tenancy continued on a statutory periodic basis from January 2008 and the deposit remained unprotected. In 2011 a Section 21 notice was served to end the tenancy."

I'm not even sure why the Superstrike case is directly relevant, unless I have misunderstood something :\

None of what you said actually makes a periodic tenancy "stupid", all you've claimed is that the deposit needs to be re-protected.

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Eric Dickinson 27th November, 2014 @ 17:08

I'm also confused about Jerry's comment. The superstrike case is about a landlord not protecting a depisit when the tenancy became periodic in 2008 when it started prior to when the scheme started in 2007. The landlord should have protected the deposit when it became periodic.

Great post btw.

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Dan Robinson 27th November, 2014 @ 17:25

Cani please advise we are a agency we ask give tenants a option to renew or resign a new ast

The reason why we as a agency charge a 60.00 renewal fee is due to the fact that we need to re register the deposit with the dps. And re issue the information requested and register the deposit again.it is only due to the amount of time it takes to complete this process

We won't charge when this law changes

I do take on board a previously mentioned comment about creating a memorandum
If this was the case we again would not charge for registering a deposit.

Not all
Agents are out to over charge tenants. Most agents like ourselves like to ensure costs are covered to carry out the works requested by law.

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jerry 27th November, 2014 @ 17:27

Read the judgement please: LJ Lloyd carefully constructs his argument from that which transpires when a tenancy converts from a fixed term to periodic. Yes, it's about the service of a Section 21 Notice but the elephant in the room is . . . making a claim on a deposit on a fixed term before it becomes periodic.

A Termination Notice is not the same as a s21 Eviction Notice, it merely prevents a tenancy automatically becoming a statutory periodic tenancy. You can agree to a contractual periodic tenancy
but you MUST account for the previous deposit and MUST re-protect the deposit. 215B of Clause 31 Deregulation Bill is utter nonsense.
Landlords MUST demonstrate compliance to avoid sanctions.

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The Landlord Avatar
The Landlord 27th November, 2014 @ 17:44

I don't think there is any solid legislation saying you need to do that... yet.

On the landlordlaw blog it says there is no definitive answer, and so far it depends on the scheme on whether you need to notify them when the tenancy becomes periodic.

http://www.landlordlawblog.co.uk/2013/06/20/tenancy-deposit-protection-in-the-light-superstrike-v-rodrigues/

The post ends with...

"I am a trained solicitor and I have to say that I find it very difficult to read and make sense of this legislation."

So I would still allow the tenancy to roll, and then perhaps notify the tenancy deposit scheme the tenancy has become periodic and enquiry whether any further actions need to be taken.

I still think allowing the tenancy to become periodic is the most flexible option, and that's my preferred option :)

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jerry 27th November, 2014 @ 17:49

Good luck in court, you will lose

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Eric Dickinson 27th November, 2014 @ 17:57

Jerry, has there been a case where a landlord has been prosecuted for not re-securing the deposit when the tenancy becomes periodic, post 2007? yes or no? Because at the moment I don't see any proof in what you're saying. Is there any legislation to say you have to re-protect the deposit beyond your opinion? I want facts.

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jerry 27th November, 2014 @ 18:06

Fact - Birmingham County Court, May 2014, Gardner v McCusker:
Landlord was fully compliant on fixed term but did not re-serve the
PI and was penalized. Judgement in lower courts is not precedent
though.

The fact is that the only cases that go to trial are related to
s21 Eviction Notices as the parties need a judgement to act as a determination going forward. The reason that no cases are recorded on non-compliance alone is that landlords always settle before judgement as it's a no-brainer they will lose, so that's why you never hear about them! Go figure.

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Eric Dickinson 27th November, 2014 @ 18:15

Fact- that is not what we are talking about here. The ONLY proof you can provide is about the "prescribed information", which is already mentioned in the article and that is not about re-securing the deposit. So again, can you kindly provide proof that the deposit needs to be resecured? Yes or no? Or are you just guessing the outcome?

There actually hasn't been a case where a landlord has been prosecuted for not re-protecting the deposit when the tenancy became periodic otherwise it would be the legislation which it isn't

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The Landlord Avatar
The Landlord 27th November, 2014 @ 18:20

@Eric
You took the words right out of my mouth :)

I've yet to see any proof or a piece of legislation that says the deposit needs to re-protected. However, I have updated the blog post, recommending that landlords follow their deposit schemes protocol on the matter.

In any case, I don't see why re-protecting the deposit and/or re-serving the P.I would make any difference to favouring the tenancy to become periodic.

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jerry 27th November, 2014 @ 18:26

Eric, my point relates to claiming on a fixed term deposit before it becomes periodic. Don't be distracted by the stupid penalties
which confuse the purpose of tenancy deposits!

Why do you think 215B in clause 31 of The Deregulation Bill has
been proposed if I am wrong?

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Eric Dickinson 27th November, 2014 @ 19:12

Jerry,

I'm sorry but I really don't understand what you're saying because there is no proof in what you have claimed and now you seem to be skirting around the points that you originally raised. I'm sure there are 100s of proposed legislations but how many of them will actually get passed? Surely we should be concerned with the current legislation and not what might be?

Your first comment was about superstrike but that is only relevant to a very specific case when a tenancy becomes periodic after the deposit was secured and the deposit wasn't secured. It doesn't even make a periodic tenancy any less appealing. Then you say "you MUST account for the previous deposit and MUST re-protect the deposit." which actually isn't definitive and you couldn't provide any proof/legislation, only proof that the PI needs to be reserved (we already knew that). Then you moved the subject onto a proposed legislation which has yet to be passed. You haven't really proved anything and have passed opinions off as facts. sorry to sound harsh but its true.

Last year I 3 times successfully claimed portions from different tenants deposit to cover vandalism during a periodic tenancy. I don't know why you are implying that you cant claim or its more difficult to claim when the tenancy is periodic. I would like to say for the final time there is no legislation in place to support what you are saying. I will happily believe you and apologise for my ignorance if you provide me with actual proof instead of wishy washy responses which cannot be proved and are not relevant at this point of time.

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Sean 27th November, 2014 @ 19:33

All I can say is that Eric is correct and what an interesting read the article and the comments have been. Enlightening.

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Eric Dickinson 27th November, 2014 @ 19:35

Sorry I was meant to say "Your first comment was about superstrike but that is only relevant to a very specific case when a tenancy becomes periodic after the deposit scheme was introduced and the deposit wasn't secured."

What I have wrote before doesn't make sense!

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jerry 27th November, 2014 @ 20:08

Eric, thanks for your consideration, I have no desire to be in conflict with you but merely attempting to caution landlords as
to the situation as it plays-out in a courtroom.

Parliament creates legislation which is interpreted by the Judiciary. HA 2004 s213/214/215 is poorly drafted. If the
courts become involved they will follow the guidance of
precedents on interpretation. Read through Tiensia v Vision Enterprises and you will see how exacting the judicial
interpretation is. The Judiciary identify loopholes in
legislation and then new legislation patches up the loophole.
I am sure you are aware of this process and it is by it's
very nature ongoing.

The proof that you rightly demand is illusory and the art of
good business is to be ahead of the curve and plan for all
contingencies.

To simplify matters, forget about the wretched penalties for
now and focus on the fact that as there are two separate
tenancies, (fixed term followed by periodic), there must be
two deposits. It is in the interests of landlords to close-out
all damage queries at the end of the fixed term, that is a
fact as stated in paragraph 38 of Superstrike, please refer
to it.

Without money actually changing hands, the tenant does pay
a second deposit to the landlord, see para 36 of Superstrike.
The tenant should top-up the deposit at that transition for
any damages but only if the landlord claims. All this talk
of 'hey, no worries just let it roll-over' is naïve, as a
set-off agreement is then established, so in not claiming,
a landlord will have written-off any damages. To claim later
would then be a breach of agreement and will be dismissed by
a court.

At the end of the periodic term, the second deposit only covers the
damages that occurred during the periodic agreement. A slippery
tenant could say 'prove that the damage occurred during the
periodic term' and argue all damage occurred during the fixed term
which by then is settled by a nil payment set-off agreement.
The burden of proof rests with the landlord, so the tenant's
denial must be demonstrably over-ruled with evidential proof,
ie., signed and dated photo evidence and check-out papers from
the end of the fixed term.

Landlords must be pro-active and act on all possible interpretations
and eventualities. I know several landlords who now do not take
deposits ( only first-and-last month ) and real hard-nosed operators who serve a s.21 eviction notice at the same time as signing a lease! Control freaks maybe but they have had very bad
experiences and take no chances.

Superstrike just reminds everyone what HA1988 stated about periodic leases: It's a new lease, return to 'Go' and comply
with all obligations. The Judiciary impose the penalties,
not parliament, so it's them you have to convince. That's the
process, that's how the law works. Any barristers on here please
comment - solicitors keep quiet please ( :

My point is make sure you inspect for damages at the end of
a fixed term and re-set the deposit details letting the scheme
provider know a new tenancy has commenced. Re-protection aids
landlords as it demonstrates due diligence in complying with
their duty of care in handling the tenant's deposit monies.

You are free to do as you think best, I only wish I could counter
you on a betting exchange as I will lay odds you will lose in court
and make a tidy profit.

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Jack Ass 27th November, 2014 @ 20:31

Tenants are very cute. I signed one in for just 2 months although they can't be evicted within first 6 months by law unless 2 months in arrears. He's 'just' under 2 months arrears and always will be till he's moved on to the next mug. These days, paying bills is 'simply not done old boy'!

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Eric Dickinson 27th November, 2014 @ 20:39

I still don't understand your point Jerry. You have reduced your point to "The proof that you rightly demand is illusory and the art of good business is to be ahead of the curve and plan for all contingencies." from "you MUST account for the previous deposit and MUST re-protect the deposit."

All your really saying is "I think you should re-protect the deposit when a tenancy becomes periodic" Until the Supreme Court makes an example out of a case there is no substance in what you're saying, your just telling us what you think might happen.

But I still don't understand how any of this makes periodic tenancies any less appealing, that was your actual point. Let's go back to the start, your first comment was "'Let it roll'? - err, sheer stupidity methinks." WHY IS IT? All you really said afterwards is "I think you should re-protect the deposit" but that doesn't mean letting the tencny become periodic is stupid.

Agree to disagree.

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Jack Ass 27th November, 2014 @ 20:50

Did anyone see Britain on Benefits life on the dole, giving out all the wrong messages. Basically run up arrears, get away with it, and move on!

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jerry 27th November, 2014 @ 20:52

Eric, good luck in your business endeavours, you are
clearly wedded to your ignorance. I have no desire
to continue here as tenants read this blog too and will
readily catch on to the power of their statutory rights,
HA 1988 handed the advantage to tenants. Amen.

Rent in peace

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Eric Dickinson 27th November, 2014 @ 20:57

How can it be their statutory right if the superstrike outcome was decided in a COUNTY COURT?

Goodluck too, with preaching fictional legislations.

Peace.

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Eric Dickinson 27th November, 2014 @ 20:58

P.s. no hard feelings!

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The Landlord Avatar
The Landlord 27th November, 2014 @ 21:01

Well, I'm pleased that battle came to a conclusion.

@Jack Ass
No. I genuinely can't watch stuff like that on TV anymore without it driving me bonkers. I've watched documentaries on "Professional bad tenants" before! It's excruciating!!

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jerry 27th November, 2014 @ 21:08

The Court of Appeal is just tad more important than the
small claims track in the County Court in the scheme of things.

The Superstrike judgement is not dissimilar to Marcel Proust's
'A La Recherché De Temps Perdu' . . . Many quote it but few
have actually read it.

Superstrike is a cracking read, best prose in the English language
since 'Moby Dick'. Oh boy, is it ever a gripping page-turner!
Google it and it's there for free. Enjoy.

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Jack Ass 27th November, 2014 @ 22:16

Nough of this! I'm going where the money is, the Bahamas, O.B.P.A.P. (Our Benefit Pals Are Paying)!

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David 28th November, 2014 @ 09:54

Great post, one edit, you have said RESERVED but it is actually re-served, i.e. you have to serve it again, not a copy but a new PI with information on it that related to periodic tenancy.

You are right that Agents are scum sucking leeches, they charge both the Landlord and the Tenant for this dangerous work. All Agent fees should be for landlords only, they are a cost of doing business and deductible from tax profit.

My last Landlord was dead against periodic, insisted on 2 year contracts which was fine, but then tried to pull out when management company put up fees.

We ended up on periodic and he then went on to serve Section 21 as notice. Problem was he had not protected deposit, had not served prescribed info of original lease never mind the periodic. We went back and forth, I practically told him what he needed to do but he kept screwing it up. He also tried getting "heavy" which got him in even more trouble. Then they tried "riding" the terms of the lease which got his lease thrown out for unfair contact terms. Overall cost him over £10k, if he had not got heavy I would not have pushed things but after that I enforced all my legal rights.

This is not a downside of Statutory Periodic Tenancies but my old Landlord being a complete cnut and failing to do the most basic paperwork.

I totally agree that periodic is the way to go.

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hayley 28th November, 2014 @ 10:03

Just thought with the mention of tenancy agreements that it would be useful to share with your readers the importance of making a periodic tenancy be a contractual periodic tenancy. This should be stated in the first tenancy agreement. With the changes in council tax laws, and if as landlords we want to avoid paying as much council tax as possible it should be noted that landlords are responsible for the costs of council tax if the tenants are on a periodic tenancy and move out during a notice to quit period. During the period of notice if the tenants choose to move out it does not exclude the landlord from paying council tax. However, if as landlords we state it is a contractual periodic tenancy and tenants move out during notice we are covered and the responsibility for payments falls to the tenant. Additionally it is worth noting that if your tenant is on a periodic tenancy and goes and rents another house (not that likely you may think but it has happened to me!) then the responsibility for payment will once again fall to the landlord. So make it a contractual periodic tenancy agreement to avoid this loophole!!

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jerry 28th November, 2014 @ 10:12

Re David's post

I am so glad to not have you as a tenant, ha!
Well done though for being tough and holding-out on what is
after all just a business deal gone sour. Plonkers deserve
to lose whether they be landlords or tenants. Right is right.

Did you go to court or settle?

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The Landlord Avatar
The Landlord 28th November, 2014 @ 14:06

@David

Thank you!

I couldn't find the culprit, did I say "reserved" or someone else? I did do a search for the word "reserved" but came back empty.

Loving your work. Glad justice prevailed! As soon as someone starts to get heavy, they deserve the hairdryer treatment!

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The Landlord Avatar
The Landlord 28th November, 2014 @ 14:57

@Hayley

Great tips/comment! Many thanks!

I had no idea landlords are responsible for the costs of council tax if the tenants are on a periodic tenancy and move out during a notice to quit period. I wonder how many tenants know that?

You mention that it should be mentioned in the original contract that the tenancy will become periodic (hence making it contractual), but it's also worth noting that the landlord can also get the tenant to sign a periodic tenancy agreement towards the end of the fixed term tenancy, which will also make it contractual.

I'll have to check if my tenancy agreements mentions if the tenancy will roll into a periodic tenancy.

Do you happen to have a sample clause which you can copy/past?

I'll shortly update the post to mention your pearls of wisdom.

Thanks again, H :)

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Zee 29th November, 2014 @ 12:30

Awesome stuff - and appreciate you loosing the wet Wednesday to put this together :-)

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jerry 29th November, 2014 @ 16:31

After much deliberation, I have decided to offer my services to tenants on a no-win-no-fee basis as a lay representative to advance claims against landlords for failing to either re-protect and/or re-serve PI.

If it takes a wolf to turn on the wolves in order for the message
to really get home, then so be it.

I leave it to the discretion of the site moderator to disclose my email contact details, or, delete this post.

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The Landlord Avatar
The Landlord 29th November, 2014 @ 20:52

@zee,

Genuinely appreciate and respect the fact you recognise the sacrifices I made to make this happen.

@Jerry

I'm not going to remove your offer. But I do want you to know that I'm not angry, I'm just disappointed :)

At least take down landlords worth taking down, like the ones that provide poor living conditions. All you're doing is supporting terrible legislations.

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Jack Ass 29th November, 2014 @ 21:10

The tables have turned. After 15 years at it there are now few rogue landlords these days as they've been weeded out, but there are many rogue tenants! Landlord' is still a dirty word though!

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hayley 1st December, 2014 @ 09:30

In most tenancy agreements it is stated that the tenancy will role onto a periodic tenancy this is not sufficient in the eyes of the law! it needs to state it rolls onto a contractual periodic tenancy. Completely ludicrous I know but it is the tribunal courts you have to win over!! And yes I went to the valuation tribunal over a £140 council tax demand - which I won!! Also worth noting the council preach a past case Macattram at you to win the day at the tribunal- happily we have another Maccattram case where this landlord also won arguing contractual periodic tenancy!! Don't pay council tax unless you need to as landlords we have enough expenses.

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Newbie_Landlord 6th December, 2014 @ 22:43

Hi Guys,

I just bought my first buy to let one bed flat with the tenants in place and the tenancy comes to an end in March 2015. The agent used to manage the property with the previous landlord and as a new landlord, I haven't signed up any agreement with them. As the completion and rent due was only a couple of days apart, they have collected the rent and passed it to me after deducting their 5% management fee (monthly fee).

My question is:

1. As I have not signed anything with the agent, can I renew the contract directly with the tenant and manage it myself?
2. Management fee is a rolling monthly one (as I was told) and hence I can cancel it even though I haven't signed anything.
3. I would like to keep my tenant and renew directly without the extra 7% "renewal fee".

Any help is much appreciated.

Thanks

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The Landlord Avatar
The Landlord 30th March, 2015 @ 13:08

Just a quick update for Jerry/Eric (and to anyone who was following the squabbles in the comments): as of today, 30th march 2015, deposits taken after April 2007 that have been protected and the prescribed information served during the original fixed term- landlords no longer need to re-serve the prescribed information when the tenancy becomes periodic- once will do! :)

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tenant 30th May, 2015 @ 22:15

I'm a tenant. I have been at this house for almost a year. Everything going fine, then wallop, I was late paying a month's rent when I changed jobs (my new firm faffed around and the start date I ended up with caused me to miss the payroll that month). So all in all I was a week or so late in paying. This is Surrey - we're talking over £1500 each month.

I wanted to extend the tenancy for another year with a six month break clause simply because I live with family and there are two small babies in the house and we wanted some stability.

Now the landlady is saying she's going to thoroughly reference me again because of the late payment. She's making me feel very uneasy, and is a bit of a bully I feel.

I've been renting now for three years since selling my house and I must admit it has been the worst experience of my life - no stability, no security of tenure, no options to decorate etc. We are now in house number three since selling. It's a joke. Some so called 'family homes' don't want kids, don't allow pets, nothing! Your rights are taken away while the landlord takes more than 50% of your salary each month, plus the £400-500 agent fees and a massive deposit.

Moving would be bearable if I didn't have to find the huge sums of money up front each time.

So, where do I stand with my current landlady? She's a business woman and owns lots of properties so I'm not a person or part of a family to her, just a source of income, which is currently about to increase by £100 a month.

She wants to do employer references which I understand but giving her my employer's contact details (a major firm so no 'mates email address') isn't enough, she wants to see my contract of employment and still contact them. This is very prying in my opinion. And she's talking down to me now since I was late with that month's rent. She's had rent since then which has been paid on time - the late one was just a one-off.

I am at a loss for words and wish I could come into money so I could tell her where to put her house! Any advice please.

Some of us are good tenants and I've improved her home, returfed the lawn, painted walls that the previous tenant left in a state, kept the house absolutely spotless etc.

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John Driscoll 5th June, 2015 @ 14:19

Just about to become a landlord for the first time. your web site has ben so helpful to my Wife and I.... please carry on with the good work.
J D.

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Hadanuff 5th June, 2015 @ 17:39

Dear Tenant, You sound like the ideal tenant and there's not many left! Your l/Lord is just being careful as to have a bad tenant is a nightmare as I have had, £2500 arrears, place wrecked, dog shit everywhere and liked to farm! I now check everything so don't worry it'll blow over.

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DKH 10th June, 2015 @ 15:43

Dear Tenant

sounds to me like you have one of the new breed surrey Landlords who couldn't give a toss about want you need or want only care about one thing and one thing only...money.

Your Landlord is being out of order by enforcing new references on you and it is invasive no matter what the reasoning. If you are adamant that you don't want this person invading your life perhaps you can find a guarantor that can stand a guarantor for the rent which it sound like you will never need. It may satiate them and stop her from invading your privacy but the Gtor will need to be referenced also.
unfortunately by rent in surrey you are likely to face a lot of this all across the surrey 'money belt' as the rent are through the roof and the Landlords know it.

I work for an agency and have seen low income families kicked out on their arses for not being able to pay £20 increases per month which may not sound a lot but when you have nothing something is everything

I was hoping the new legislation would help people fight the rising tide of greed but alas it doesn't so the Landlord will remain in their rights to do whatever they want

good luck...

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Andy 17th January, 2016 @ 18:51

I have a tenant who has been with us for a year and wants another 12month contract, she wants security and thus the periodic route is not for her. The deposit is with dps, does it just roll and no need to do anything? The guarantor signed a letter based on the original contract should they resign a new letter? How do you handle the original schedule of condition as this is still the condition when they moved in but obviously will now be a different term, does the original dated schedule just get referenced in the new contract? I will include clauses re the new rent document, epc and gas safe. I normally now gets tenants to go periodic to save all this crap!

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David 7th February, 2016 @ 10:25

@Andy

You are best to try and "resell" the period route to your tenant.

For a new tenancy you will have to charge her for the prep of a new tenancy agreement, in reality it can be a simple extended contract)

Explain to the tenant that with a periodic they always have 2 months statutory notice.

If you offer a year with a 6m break clause then the tenant really does not gain much.

For the inventory you have to allow for wear and tear, so if they occupy over 5 years you cannot really expect things to be in same condition.

You could and should be doing inspections and check the inventory regularly.

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David 7th February, 2016 @ 10:38

@tenant

Some landlords get really paranoid when you miss a payment because they are amateurs and do not have the cashflow themselves to make their mortgage payment.

I had a landbytch (she was no lady)once who I was paying 3 months at a time albeit that I was on monthly payments (I was doing contract work and preferred to pay 3 months at a time to avoid any slips).

Funny thing is one time I only had two months and was not able to pay the third month until a few days later. She told me I caused a massive cashflow problem for her (I was still paying 2 months)

The bytch ended the tenancy, I looked at her facebook page and she had just been on a £8k holiday in Bermuda.

I get your concern about security, to be honest there is none and as long as people keep voting the the CON merchants we have at the moment things will only get worse.

Right now the only way to get "some" security is to move to social housing but the Government is taking that away too. If you are paying £1500 a month that is £18k a year in rent so I am guessing you earn over £30k which means no social housing too. The removal of the obligation for developers to create 20% social housing means that there will be even less and the attempt to force right to buy on housing associations will see a lot of them collapse.

You do have to wonder why they want to hurt people who have so much less than them.

The problem is that anyone who is unable to get a mortgage is totally screwed in this country. You might look into shared ownership via housing associations such as Catalyst.

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Kirsty 7th March, 2016 @ 19:43

My partner and I have been on a 12 month contract that ended on 8th February 2016. We assumed this went to an automatic periodic tenancy, however we received an email on the 29th February saying they wish to increase our rent from £800 a month to £825. We replied saying we'd like to go on a periodic tenancy and they have sent us an assured shorthold tenancy agreement that states £825 must be paid from the month of March (8th March). They have also said that 1 months notice must be given by either party. My questions are:

1) should they have given us 1 months notice before increasing the monthly price? I realise we werent technically in our normal contract at that point so am unsure on the law for this

2) can we ask for the landlords notice period to be 2 months, the usual amount, or do we not have a say in this? Also, if we contest this, and we ask for a revised contract, do the terms and conditions not apply until it is then signed (i.e. rent of £825 does not come into effect until then).

Thank you!

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Simon Pambin 8th March, 2016 @ 22:30

Hi Kirsty,

If you haven't signed a new contract, you're in a statutory periodic tenancy. While you're in a statutory periodic tenancy, your landlord can't unilaterally increase your rent without issuing a Section 13 Notice, which requires a minimum of one month before the increase can be applied. (If you use the Search facility above you'll find the details so I won't regurgitate it here).

You can ask the landlord for a two month notice period if you like, but it's a bit redundant as they have to give you a minimum two months' notice by law. (Either they don't know that, in which case they're not very good landlords, or they're hoping that you don't, in which case they're not very nice landlords!)

Ultimately it depends how much you want to antagonise your landlord and risk being given your marching orders (although any rational landlord would be reluctant to incur the costs of changing tenants without good reason). If you like where you're living, why not suggest starting the new agreement from April? If you do sign a new tenancy agreement, make sure your landlord issues you with the prescribed information regarding the protection of your deposit.

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Sam 17th April, 2017 @ 17:17

Looking for some advice on the best option to go down. I am currently letting to a couple who are on a 12 month fixed term contract which ends in June 2017. I have been contacted by one party to say that the other party is moving out, but that they want to remain as sole tenant when the tenancy expires. I usually just let the tenancy roll over to a periodic tenancy at the end of the fixed term, but not sure whether this is appropriate this time given only one tenant will remain. Should I make the sole tenant sign a new contract? The outgoing person is keen not to remain liable. I have seen a few comments here on contractual periodic tenancies but not entered into one of them before. Off to see the tenant who wants to stay this week to see whether it is still affordable as she is on maternity leave at the moment & the other party always paid the rent which is my other concern

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David 17th April, 2017 @ 18:21

@Sam

You could create an amendment to the contract just prior to it expiring that changes the tenants to the sole tenant, that way when the tenancy rolls over to Statutory Periodic it would have the same terms but they would only apply to the remaining tenant.

So a word of warning, what we have here is a couple, he has knocked her up, Mat leave means she will have less income. Assuming it is HIS baby (unless that is the reason for him leaving) he may be prepared to be a guarantor for a new lease in her name, a 6 month AST would be sensible.

It may be that he is moving out so that she can get into social housing more quickly, then he moves back once they get their place. If he stays they will take his income into account and say she can be housed in private sector.

If that is their goal they will want you to evict them some time after the baby is born.

Of course I may be just thinking up a situation that are not their plans.

I think you have to question her ability to afford it, that means bank statements and budget. It may sound harsh but if she can't afford it, better to find out now, issue the S21 this month, as soon as you have seen her and made your decision.

You could have all the potential paperwork with you, an agreement changing the tenants, a form for the guarantee and an S21 dated accordingly.

I would decline to release him if he does not sign a guarantee for her, (assuming you are happy for her to stay in new property).

The reason I say that is because in worst case scenario, it is easier to go after two people than one, especially the bread winner.

If you issue S21 and she does not go, he remains liable for the performance of the tenancy agreement. It's terms carry on into the SPT. It gives you some leverage and some clues as to their motives (depending on the protests thereafter). It is quite reasonable to not release someone from a contract until they have returned the property.

Call me cynical but people change, especially when they have babies, she may have told employer she is going back to work in 6 months, but one that little bundle of mayhem comes into her life she may want to be a full time mother.

So I would ask "May I ask you a personal question? Are you/Is he the father of the baby? Will you/he be supporting her/you and the baby?

How do you propose being able to afford the tenancy moving forward?

Then you can make an informed decision.

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Sam 17th April, 2017 @ 18:42

Thanks David. The babies (twins) were born last September. The tenant who wants to remain got her mother to be guarantor when they entered into the tenancy (at the agents recommendation as she had a CCJ) for a dispute with a company she had been working for. I use an agent for let only & they did all the vetting checks a year ago. I think the monthly rent was paid by the guarantor this month. I don't want to be unsympathetic but I have concerns about her ability to pay the rent in the long term so wondering whether it would be wiser to seve the notice & let the fixed term come to an end

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David 17th April, 2017 @ 19:40

@Sam

Well at least you have the guarantor, that is a far safer position.

I think the most important thing is to appear to have considered their position.

Nothing pisses people off more than not being able to be heard.

So I would say to her that as things stand she would not be able to afford the rent, she also had a CCJ but her joint tenant mitigated that.

So unless she can give you a budget of her income and outgoings, along with any other facts that mitigate her position, you may be forced to end the tenancy in June. This will cause some stress but it sows the seed of it being a possibility.

Then ask her to compete this Statement of Affairs, to save the data and send you the file.

http://www.stoozing.com/calculator/soa.php

You may have to do the same for the Guarantor if you decide to go into a new tenancy.

Even if you have made your decision, give them a chance to take it on board and if news is bad give it gently, give her the S21 and do not release the former tenant. Say to her that you will support her and provide her with a positive reference as long as rent is kept up to date.

Try to get an idea of her plans, Council or Private renting.

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wafena khan 17th August, 2017 @ 15:21

I was evicted and I need a application form to be renewed from assured shorthold which was gone into periodic, an application to courts to wait for applications from immigration for backpay this took place because I became paperless broken, with means of my bankrupt well the courts, should help with payment for eviction and anti social behavior at the front door and the building, for utilities scam.
I need a follow forms from the tenancy to be renewed, court from probation to non molestation orders, to care of no contacts, financial poor.
wafena khan
13b solway road
London
se22 9bg

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