OpenRent Community

Tenant wants to leave before 6 month agreement

My tenant agreed to a 6 month rental of my flat early May and because he was furloughed paid 5 months plus the deposit up front. His Father was also used as guarantor.

He has asked me that due to family problems that if he left early i.e now would he loose any of the money or deposit he has paid.

I have never come across this before and consider myself a good landlord so am not sure what is the legal/ethical thing to do here.

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it is your choice to hold him to the contract or not

Thanks Colin3. Its more the hassle of tenant find, interviews, checks and utilities than the money. Such is the life of a landlord. Spoilt by having previous tenant staying 4 to 5 years.

yes I get i…t I have tenants of £22 years and a few of 8 or 9 years . Bliss.

If you think the tenant has genuine reasons for leaving (especially during this difficult period) and that he is worse off than yourself, then perhaps you could refund him if you can afford to ??

I have had this on quite a few occassions. What I do is I say to the tennant that’s fine but you did sign a 6 month contract and until the room is re-let I will refund any monies covering the period from that re-let date when new tennant moves in until the end of 6 months which previous tennant has paid. They are usually happy with this arangement.

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Thanks Susan and Simon. I am pretty much thinking on those lines. It it the cost of finding and vetting a new tenant and losing rent through no fault of mine, but the tenant has, I trust, a genuine reason for leaving so I will be fair in my decision. Still yet to find out when he definitely wants to leave so advertising the flat is on hold at the moment.

I have had this situation too and like others I agreed on the provision they still are liable for rent/utilities etc until a new tenant is found, only from the new tenant moving in will I refund any difference etc. It didn’t take me long to find a new tenant but until that time I held the existing tenant to the rent and utilities as It was her that wanted to break the contractual agreement.

It all worked out fine for both of us ultimately as I knew i would get a new tenant very quickly.

I would arrange a scheme whereby he leaves but you both agree that you will refund any remaining money held less expenses AFTER you have found a new tenant. Expenses would ne lost rent etc but allow one month free as that is reasonably the period to find a new tenant regardless…

Just depends how alturistic you are really :wink:

Since there is mutual clause for leaving before the end of the contract, wouldn’t that mean that the tenant has to pay the rent for all the month that specified in the mutual break clause?

Difficult in these times. You have a contract and by law if he chooses to leave early then he looses the money. However, as a good landlord you could negotiate a small payback due to his circumstances and your flat will be empty for viewings