A recent case involving residential property landlords and tenants has highlighted the importance of carefully drafted tenancy agreements and complying with the tenancy deposit protection scheme.
The case involved a tenant who failed a credit check but paid a deposit and 6 months’ rent up front, she later became in arrears and the landlord served notice. She refused to leave and in court argued that the upfront money was a deposit which should have been held in a tenancy deposit protection scheme and because it was not the landlord should have lost their right to serve notice. At appeal she lost so landlords can continue to take rent in advance, when it is undoubtedly ‘rent’.
The case is a reminder that watertight, unambiguous tenancy agreements are important to protect both parties. The case should also serve as a warning to the landlords who do try to get around dealing with the deposit protection scheme by taking ‘advance rent’. If you would like advice relating to residential property please contact your local Brown & Co office.