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I am renting a room in London to an agency, and we have a Licensor/Licensee relationship ("Licence to Occupy on Short Term Basis"). I had an initial 3 month contract, that I am renewing for 6 month.

There is a termination fee of £75, a renewal fee of £50 and an initial fee of £150.

However after asking them today if there is a fee for early termination, which I could not find on the agreement, I received this answer:

As we don’t allow for early termination there is not anything contained in the agreement that refers to it.

What we do allow is for you to find a replacement to takeover your term for at least the duration of your contract at the rent and deposit you agreed at. You are free to use any means necessary to find a replacement e.g. advertising on spare room etc. they must take the room at the rate you took it at. Once you find a suitable replacement then you pass their details on to us and we take it from there. Please be aware that you are liable for your room until a new contract is in place.

  • In practice, since this is not in the agreement, is this enforcable?
  • If yes, is it because our contract if between a Licensor/Licensee and not landlord/tenant?
  • Should I ask for a different contract if I plan to stay for a longer time (is there a legal meaning of "Short Term")?

Note: I am new to the UK, and never studied law

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Since the agreement has no clause for early termination, there is no default or unilateral right to do so. Instead, this must be negotiated with the agency (since parties to a contract may agree a further contract that dissolves the first one).

The agency has simply told you what terms they will offer for any such agreement. The contract between you and them only ends when they also agree to it - which is implied by the acceptance of a new contract between they and someone else for the same space under the same conditions.

This is not reliant on what you call yourselves, only on what you agreed in your own contract. There is no loophole or skiving off from your obligation in it.

What you do for personal reasons in your own life is not something we can tell you about. If you are the United Kingdom, contact a citizens' advice bureau, who can give some advice and recommendations, or arrange an interview with legal counsel if you insist on pursuing the contract's end.

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  • Thanks, that clears a lot.So what they say after "What we do allow.." is basically what they would intend to propose should I want to leave, however I can negotiate that, do I understand correctly? – nha Nov 9 '16 at 10:15
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    Well, you can attempt to negotiate it. But given that it's probably company policy, they're likely to respond with "take it or leave it". – Nij Nov 9 '16 at 10:20
  • Ok, but shouldn't how a contract end be specified in said contract? – nha Nov 9 '16 at 10:30
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    You have a three-month contract. It ends when three months has passed since you agreed to it. – Nij Nov 9 '16 at 11:59

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