Q: I am currently renting my home as my retirement home is still being built.
My lease was initially due to expire at the end of next month as the initial date for occupation of my new home was May 31. A new tenant was due to move into my rented home on June 1. However, due to lockdown and the fact that construction has stopped, my retirement home will only be ready for occupation on July 31. My landlord has agreed to extend my lease until then, but cannot extend it any further as the new tenants need to move in. Movement and evictions are not allowed, though, so what happens if the construction of my new home is delayed further and I cannot take occupation on July 31? Can I insist on remaining in my rented home?
A: At this stage, the tenant can feel secure where he or she is because, until the moratorium on eviction has been uplifted and free travel and commuting for nonessential goods is allowed, no one can move house or be evicted. No one can say when that will be with any certainty yet, although it’s unlikely to be any time soon considering the infection rate is still increasing and the government’s stringent stance and measures. – David Dewar, director of Thomson Wilks Attorneys, Notaries and Conveyancers
Q: I need to know if I am able to relocate under Level 4.
A: As it stands, people are not allowed to relocate. Even tenants whose lease agreements had come to an end at the end of March will not be able to move and will have to stay put in the agreement in which they are currently. I suggest they sign month to month extension agreements to give both landlord and tenant some certainty. This also affects buyers, because even though the Deeds Office is open and there can be registrations, a person won’t be able to take occupation. – Tony Clarke, managing director of the Rawson Property Group
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