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Contract, Moving Out And Ea/landlord

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My GF and I have been living in a property for 3 years and 3 months. Each year the EA/landlord has given us a new contract to sign in June, which we have. This year my GF is returning to university so we need to move away from this house by September. We have informed the landlord that this is the case and have avoided signing the contract.

They have been VERY awkward and I have had several calls/messages/visits from them telling us 'they are picking up the contract' and that 'we must have had time to read it by now'. They first tried to get us to sign a year contract when they knew we were planning on moving out. Now they have put a 2 month break clause. We have discussed how we are just on a rolling contract now so will obviously will pay the rent / under obligation. I think the issue is they want to increase the rent by £50 for these last two months.

Im currently working 6-7 days a week (just started a new business) so am very busy and TBH stressed. They have just sent an email stating that we are £50 short and that we must pay this.

With an Assured Short-hold Tenancy I was under the impression that we are now on a rolling contract, and pay what was agreed. Also that they will have to issue notice for us to move and this will take 2 months. If we to move, we need to give 1 month.

Is there anything they can do? Im pretty sure we can find a place within 2 months (we have to anyway!).

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Seems to me its you who is in the strong position and as long as you don't sign the contract then all they can do is give you 2 months notice and cannot force you to pay the £50 extra in the mean time. You can stall them for a month or so if this is all you require and if your 2 months notice is given to you then still just move out when it suits you. They cannot enforce this without going to court which takes months. Hold your ground IMO.

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yep you are right, your last shorthold tenancy has finished so you are now on a periodic where you need to give a months notice where as they need to give 2 calendar months...

From Shelter website

Notice requirements

Your landlord has to give you written notice if s/he wants you to leave. If your landlord is claiming you have done something wrong (such as not paying the rent), you may only get two weeks' notice.

However, if your landlord doesn't have a reason to evict you, the notice must be at least two calendar months or the same period for which rent is paid, whichever is longer. If your tenancy is periodic, the notice should end on the last day of a tenancy period (the day before your rent is due).

If you don't leave by the end of the notice period, your landlord can apply for a court order

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Thanks for the replies and the quote from shelter.

Ive read the AST contract and it doesn't mention rent increases so I assume they cant just increase it and make us liable and say we have 2 weeks? The email states they are of the opinion that they have successfully increased the rent, seems odd. I presume its them trying to pull yet another fast one.

Im not trying to be awkward but theyve had their pound of flesh in the past 3 years of reliable rent and trouble free tenants, seems odd to push things now when they know we're moving out in the next couple of months.

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They can raise the rent. You can refuse to pay the increase, in which case they can serve you two months notice to quit.

All subject to lots of caveats about whether your agreement says different, and whether a rise is too unreasonable (meaning above the going rate for the area), in which case you might get the council to veto it.

IANAL, and what I say is probably rubbish.

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A Section 13 Rent Increase Notice in specified form is required, which informs the tenant/s of the date that the rent increase will come into force. This must be at lease one month after the notice is served.


Other info on the page

So my reading of this is that if the landlord does not serve you a Section 13 Rent Increase Notice, or Section 21 Notice (to leave) then you just keep paying the old rent and give them 1 months notice to leave.

Make sure you give them your notice in time, in writing and with the correct dates on it!

Hope they don't try and deduct the "missing" rent payments form your deposit... if they do sounds like you'll gave to take it to the dispute procedure, but if they have not served the correct notice to increase the rent and you have not agreed to it then the dispute process should rule in your favour!

Good luck!

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