Tenants who have paid rent in advance splitting up

Here is a section from a recent landlord blog post we have collected :-

My tenants are an unmarried couple who are splitting up. She paid one year’s rent in advance and now because she can’t live with him anymore and he refuses to move out she wants to end the tenancy agreement.

What is the best way to deal with this?

Answer

I am assuming that the fixed term of their tenancy has not yet ended.

The answer is, you don’t have to do anything. It is up to them to sort it out.

They have signed a binding legal contract to pay your rent for a year and have paid it. If they now decide that they can’t live together – it’s not your fault.

If they are able to find someone else to take over the tenancy then, provided they pass referencing, you could agree to re-let to them so long as your expenses are covered.

However what you don’t want is to refund the advance rent paid by your current tenants only to find that the new tenants don’t pay and you are then out of pocket.

For your point of view the best thing to do is just refuse to allow the current tenants to end the tenancy early or to refund any money.