Sale of a rented property

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We have recently taken over management of a property which has been sold to one of our current landlords.

The tenants have always been paying rent to the old landlord with no issues, but as soon the new landlord has taken ownership, and passed the management over to us, the tenants are refusing to pay rent on the following grounds. You'll notice they have taken advice:

1)Without written confirmation or other proof that a sale has been concluded, it would be foolish to pay any monies to a third party. Simply being a landlord, or landlords agent, does not confer any right to demand rent, especially if there is already a valid tenancy agreement in place.

2)The most important thing is that the current tenancy agreement has no provision to assign or transfer the agreement to either 'new' tenants or different landlords. That means that until that agreement is altered, amended or expires, it is the only contractual basis on which rent can be demanded.

3)Changes to the current contract requires two month's notice and the consent of both parties. Termination of the contract by the 'old' landlord also requires two months notice in writing and the return of the deposit together with any damages that may be agreed.

4)The tenants have been in dispute with the landlord regarding repairs and maintenenace. They were left without hot water and without heating for a few weeks making the flat uninhabitable in the depths of winter. The tenants were seeking recompense and damages for having to vacate the property.

5)Failure to ensure that the previous landlord had terminated the tenancy agreement in the correct manner with the current tenants, failure to ensure that the contract ended correctly and with the return of the tenants deposit together with a continuing failure to demonstrate proof of ownership of the property suggests that a sale/transfer/etc may not have happened, may not have happened in a proper manner, or may be concealing a completely different scenario.

Please advise.

Kind regards,

09/05/2013 14:33

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