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Forum Spotlight: Ending six month tenancy early at the request of tenant

Victoria Barker
Written by Victoria Barker

This week’s Forum Spotlight looks at a question from a landlord about how they can end a tenancy agreement at the request of the tenant.

The situation

The landlord posted on our forum explaining that she was facing an issue around how to gain possession of their property at the request of the tenant.

She explained that she recently let the property out on a six month tenancy agreement, and the tenancy is in joint names between a couple. The couple had been living in the property for three months, however on of the tenants approached this landlord to say that the other tenant-their partner had recently left her.

She explained to the landlord that she was unable to afford the property on her own, and said that she plans on leaving the property after the six month contact, but has now asked this landlord if she could leave the tenancy sooner.

The landlord said that ending the tenancy sooner would suit them as she has a waiting list of people to put in the property.

She posted on our Forum asking for advice about how she could terminate the six month tenancy before the six months are up, as this tenant had requested.  She also wanted to know whether she would have to get in touch with the other joint tenant to get permission to do this.

What other landlords on our Forum suggested

One landlord on pour Forum suggested that this landlord would need both of the tenants on the agreement to surrender, because they are both responsible for the rent and all of the bills, until the property is re-let.

Response from our Landlord Advice Team

The question poster had requested a response from our landlord advice team for their query. They said that in this situation it would be best for the landlord to agree a surrender of tenancy with the two tenants named in the tenancy agreement.

The landlord would need to draft something in words, stating that as the landlord, they agree that both named tenants will surrender their tenancy on a certain date (to be agreed between themselves). Doing this will end the tenancy.

The landlord and the two tenants all need to sign the letter and on the date of surrender or even before, the tenants can return the keys to the landlord. The tenant(s) are only liable for paying the rent up until the date of surrender.

If the tenants do not return their keys however this would not stand as you are not being given ‘vacant possession.’

Learn more

About the author

Victoria Barker

Victoria Barker

Victoria is the Communications Officer for the RLA.

She is responsible for producing articles for our Campaigns and News Centre, the weekly E-News newsletter and media review, and creating social media content. She also contributes to our members magazine, Residential Property Investor.

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