Hi all! If anyone has any advice about my unique situation, I would really appreciate it!
I’m in a joint tenancy with one other house-sharer who is Australian and has been stuck in Australia for 12 months due to the pandemic. Our 2 year fixed term joint tenancy is up on 30 April and I’ve made it clear to her, our landlord and letting agents that I want to move out. We’ve all been trying desperately to get in touch with her to find out if she wants to hold onto the lease and get a new housemate to replace me, or end the tenancy. She’s gone radio silent and won’t respond to anyone. I found out through a mutual friend that she’s fallen into a deep depression.
My landlord and letting agent said if she doesn’t communicate her intentions, the lease will automatically renew and we’ll both be liable to pay another six months rent. It’s so hard. I don’t want to be financially liable due to my housemate’s lack of communication. And I’m also confused about how a fixed term lease can just automatically renew without consent from the tenants? Any help or advice would be MUCH appreciated.
You are on a joint agreement therefore both parties have to consent to departure. If you leave, although she is out of the country, she is still liable until she gives written notice.
She really needs to communicate.
Do you know anyway of contacting her or her family?
The other option is to ask the agent/ Landlord to serve an eviction notice to both parties and you return the house empty to them and let your housemate know what you are doing. It’s a bit high risk and they may reject the idea if she does not confirm
At the end of a tenancy it automatically converts to a rolling periodic tenancy. Once you are in this you are able to end the tenancy by serving notice to your landlord by yourself. At this stage you dont need the other tenants consent. Unless stated otherwise in your contract a periodic tenancy is monthly and you need to give 1 months notice ending at the end of rental period so you can effectively end the tenancy by 30 June by yourself. I would think that a tenancy that automatically renews (other than to go periodic) without your consent would be considered an unfair condition and be unenforceable.