I am currently on a fixed term tenancy agreement through a lettings agency – 3 months, rent paid in advance. In the contract it says that I/the landlord/agent would need to give 1 months notice before the end of the tenancy agreement if we want to stay on/move out.
The agent is now pushing for a 6 months fixed period contract. What are my rights? How can I push for a periodic/3 month fixed term contract – like the one I am on now.
I told the agent of my intent a month ago but they have been quite slow in. I feel like they are purposely slowing down the process so that it becomes too late for me to move out and am forced to just sign a 6months contract (there is now only 2 weeks left).
You don’t HAVE to sign a new agreement. If you stay on, a periodic tenancy will be created automatically – you don’t have to do anything. The terms and conditions of your current agreement will continue to apply (apart from the fixed term part).
The periodic tenancy will be a three month periodic, as you say, if you have been paying your rent quarterly.
The clause requiring you to give one months notice if you want to stay on will almost certainly be void. A clause in the tenancy agreement cannot take away your rights under s5 of the Housing Act 1988 (the section which creates the periodic tenancy if you stay on).
The reason the agents will be pushing for you to sign a new fixed term is because they will then be able to charge a commission to the landlord Not because it is illegal in any way for you to stay on.