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What happens when fixed term lease ends ? Can notice be given by email ?

By Maxwell - 12 January 2012 10

Hi I am just wanting some advice, hopefully this can also serve as advice to others who have the same question. My lease expires soon and I have not yet received a written notice to vacate in the mail and am not sure if I will get one. I intend to stay in the place but would prefer month to month to a new lease..

Can this be sent by email or must it be in writing ?

Also as the lease becomes a month to month lease I am of the understanding that:

Clause 96 STT – Termination with cause applies.

Cl96 sets out the grounds for termination and the period of notice the landlord must give, as follows:

  • That the landlord or their immediate relative, or a person who has a close personal relationship, and a reasonable expectation that the landlord would provide them with accommodation, genuinely intends to live in the premises (cl 96(1)(a),(b) and (c)) [4 weeks notice];
  • That the landlord has a genuine intention to sell the premises (cl 96(1)(d)) [8 weeks notice]; or
  • That the landlord has a genuine intention to reconstruct, renovate or make major repairs that cannot reasonably be carried out with the tenant living in the premises (cl 96(1)(e)) [12 weeks notice].

A notice under cl 96 can only be issued when the tenancy is periodic. This means such a notice cannot be given to a tenant who is in a fixed term tenancy.

So basically, you get a bit of notice for the reasons listed above. However, what seems stange to me is how is this enforced ?

If the agent just goes ” Oh yeah – the landlords brother wants to move in. ” What can you do about it ? Nothing. So is the above at all enforceable ?

Should I be prepared to move on short notice ?

What’s Your opinion?


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10 Responses to
What happens when fixed term lease ends ? Can notice be given by email ?
Violet68 7:06 pm 12 Jan 12

In my experience, all Notice to Vacate have to be signed, so an email would not be considered a valid Notice. Try the tenant’s union. They are excellent. http://www.tenantsact.org.au/RentingAdvice

Maxwell 6:19 pm 12 Jan 12

BethiePrice said :

Generally notices to vacate are sent in the mail because the letter head of the company is on the post and it’s more legitamate. If you get one attached to an email, then I would take that as notice to vacate, if you get one in email form, call and ask for one on letterhead. Notices to vacate are normally accompanied by other information.

harvyk1 said :

On expiry of your lease you’ll probably get a confirmation letter confirming that your lease is now periodic.

Month-to-month is automatic after a fixed term lease ends and if you decline an offered fixed term lease. You won’t get an email or letter about that, it’s in your original lease documents that you (SHOULD) would have got a copy of.

NoImRight said :

Why do you want month to month instead of a new lease?

Month to month leases are easier to break on both sides because you aren’t locked into a contract. Therefore if something like a new job or a new house comes out of you won’t be stuck paying rent or break lease fees until/when a new tenant is found. Generally if you break your lease before it ends you also have to pay advertising costs as well.
And sorry if the agency through the right means advises that the landlord or immediate relative is moving back in you have to leave….on saying that if you find that the property is readvertised for sale or at a higher rental price you may have grounds to take them to the tribunal to recover moving costs.

Ah okay, thats how it is enforceable. So I doubt they’d bother taking the risk of getting sued then.

troll-sniffer 5:06 pm 12 Jan 12

Unless the lessor can show good cause otherwise, you cannot be given less than 26 weeks notice to vacate. If the lessor advises that they or a relative intend to move in or they intend to renovate, ask for details and advise that you will monitor the property and if it is advertised inside the 26 weeks after you leave, you will be taking the matter to the Tenancy Tribunal with a view to suing for damages if you win.

The 26 week clause is in the Tenancy Act for a very good reason, and that is to stop tenants who have established a home from being summarily made to up sticks and leave for no real reason.

I’ve just re-read your post and it seems that you are getting ahead of yourself. In almost all cases good tenants simply go on to a month by month lease at the end of the tenancy. best you see what happens at the end of yours before posting alarmist entries here methinks!

NoImRight 4:29 pm 12 Jan 12

BethiePrice said :

Generally notices to vacate are sent in the mail because the letter head of the company is on the post and it’s more legitamate. If you get one attached to an email, then I would take that as notice to vacate, if you get one in email form, call and ask for one on letterhead. Notices to vacate are normally accompanied by other information.

harvyk1 said :

On expiry of your lease you’ll probably get a confirmation letter confirming that your lease is now periodic.

Month-to-month is automatic after a fixed term lease ends and if you decline an offered fixed term lease. You won’t get an email or letter about that, it’s in your original lease documents that you (SHOULD) would have got a copy of.

NoImRight said :

Why do you want month to month instead of a new lease?

Month to month leases are easier to break on both sides because you aren’t locked into a contract. Therefore if something like a new job or a new house comes out of you won’t be stuck paying rent or break lease fees until/when a new tenant is found. Generally if you break your lease before it ends you also have to pay advertising costs as well.
And sorry if the agency through the right means advises that the landlord or immediate relative is moving back in you have to leave….on saying that if you find that the property is readvertised for sale or at a higher rental price you may have grounds to take them to the tribunal to recover moving costs.

Thanks but I understand the conditions of month to month. I was asking the OP why they wanted one. It just seems odd when they are also concerned about being booted with no notice.

BethiePrice 4:10 pm 12 Jan 12

Generally notices to vacate are sent in the mail because the letter head of the company is on the post and it’s more legitamate. If you get one attached to an email, then I would take that as notice to vacate, if you get one in email form, call and ask for one on letterhead. Notices to vacate are normally accompanied by other information.

harvyk1 said :

On expiry of your lease you’ll probably get a confirmation letter confirming that your lease is now periodic.

Month-to-month is automatic after a fixed term lease ends and if you decline an offered fixed term lease. You won’t get an email or letter about that, it’s in your original lease documents that you (SHOULD) would have got a copy of.

NoImRight said :

Why do you want month to month instead of a new lease?

Month to month leases are easier to break on both sides because you aren’t locked into a contract. Therefore if something like a new job or a new house comes out of you won’t be stuck paying rent or break lease fees until/when a new tenant is found. Generally if you break your lease before it ends you also have to pay advertising costs as well.
And sorry if the agency through the right means advises that the landlord or immediate relative is moving back in you have to leave….on saying that if you find that the property is readvertised for sale or at a higher rental price you may have grounds to take them to the tribunal to recover moving costs.

harvyk1 11:20 am 12 Jan 12

On expiry of your lease you’ll probably get a confirmation letter confirming that your lease is now periodic. Neither you or them need to do anything as it automatically happens once the fixed term lease expires.

Of course a quick phone call to confirm never hurts…

NoImRight 11:07 am 12 Jan 12

Why do you want month to month instead of a new lease?

DermottBanana 10:26 am 12 Jan 12

I wont get into the ins and outs of tenancy law, but I can assure you Maxwell that email and snail mail have the same standing when it comes to giving someone notice.

Vlad_Gregor 10:19 am 12 Jan 12

Bluey said :

4 weeks isnt really short notice but if your landlord isnt a total douchebag theyll give you as much notice as possible…

..You do not HAVE to sign on for another 12 months, you can negotiate that with your PM. month to month or shorter period leases (3-6) months are possible.

Bluey’s right, if you wish to stay on at the property, your lease will go straight into periodic tenancy unless you negotiate to sign a short term lease or another 12 month.
If your lease expires soon you should have heard something by now from the agent in regards to what the landlord wants to do. I’d be chasing up with them if I were you.

Bluey 9:59 am 12 Jan 12

4 weeks isnt really short notice but if your landlord isnt a total douchebag theyll give you as much notice as possible.

You will recieve a letter in the mail regarding any changes to the status quo. Email is not acceptable.

You do not HAVE to sign on for another 12 months, you can negotiate that with your PM. month to month or shorter period leases (3-6) months are possible.

You can appeal to ACAT if you feel youve been hard done by or they havent given the right amount of notice

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