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Timing to serve Section 21 after break clause

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Author Topic: Timing to serve Section 21 after break clause  (Read 179 times)
Newbie
Posts: 2

I like property

« on: January 20, 2022, 07:07:37 PM »

Hi everyone..newbie here.

i have a 1 year AST with my current tenant...contract started on 1 May 2021 and it includes a 6 month break clause and provision of S 21 clause. Just to make it clear the break clause is standard wording as such

"12.Where the Term is 12 months or greater:
(a)The Landlord may terminate the tenancy upon giving not less than two months’ notice in writing or email, such notice not to expire before the expiry of 6 months from the start of the tenancy.
(b)The Tenant may terminate the tenancy upon giving not less than one month’s notice in writing or email"

So on 6 December 2021, after long and hard thinking (i decided to sell my flat asap), i called my tenant and explained that i am giving him an end of tenancy notice and follow that up shortly with formally written email (stating his formal last day will be 6th Feb, however i am willing to be  few days flexible if needs be). Tenant has been paying rent as normal, however have been very irresponsive on confirming his last day. I can appreciate that it can take a while to find new place but to give silent treatment is a different thing since i am not sure what's going on and i have to think about making the inventory check before his last day, arrange return of his deposit (under govt scheme), etc. I don't want him to think that he can get away ignoring the notice and what has been stated on signed contract.

I have been thinking of using the section 21 in case of worst scenario.  I heard about things not being straightforward if you serve the S 21 before end of contract (effectively 1 May 2022, but the break clause is there so i don't see how this is a problem)? Does anyone have thoughts or experience that they can share on this? Is it more challenging to serve S 21 before the end of contract period?

Thanks in advance  :)
Full Member
Posts: 174

Landlord - always learning

« Reply #1 on: January 20, 2022, 11:46:39 PM »

I don't want him to think that he can get away ignoring the notice and what has been stated on signed contract.

I have been thinking of using the section 21 in case of worst scenario.

You cannot use a Section 21 notice if it’s less than 4 months since the tenancy started, or the fixed term has not ended, unless there’s a clause in the contract which allows you to do this.

You have a break clause, so you should be able to issue a Section 21.

Open the PDF here https://nearlylegal.co.uk/section-21-flowchart/ and ensure that you have everything in place to ensure your Section 21 will be valid.


Be prepared for the fact that even though you have given him notice in accordance with the break clause, he may simply choose to stay and force you to go down the Section 21 route.

Be prepared for the fact that if you serve a Section 21 and get judgement in your favour, he may simply choose to stay and force you to apply to the court for an order for possession.

You may not get your property back as quickly as you hope. Consider the possibility of a financial inducement to help him find another place by your desired date and go without fuss; it may be cheaper for you to do this than take legal action.
Newbie
Posts: 2

I like property

« Reply #2 on: January 21, 2022, 10:38:35 AM »

Thank you for the reply! Also for the link on Section 21, i will look into it for more details.

I really hope i don't have to go down this route and only use it as last resort. I do have a landlord legal expenses cover in place for the property so hopefully it will take some of the financial pressure related to the legal process.

Full Member
Posts: 174

Landlord - always learning

« Reply #3 on: January 21, 2022, 11:15:40 AM »

I really hope i don't have to go down this route and only use it as last resort.

Of course. Hopefully it will all go smoothly.

It's just that some landlords are under the impression that when fixed term of the tenancy agreement expires, or they exercise a break clause, the tenant has to leave on the date stipulated. But this isn't so.

Do everything you can to have friendly comms with your tenant. They may have their own work/money/relationship issues to deal with and you needing your property back may just be piling pressure on them.

Good luck. 
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