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  1. Hi. I will try to be brief and to the point. I took an assured shorthold tennancy on in a house of multiple occupancy as a cost saving exercise. The landlord told me there was 3 girls living in the house and upon viewing the house it seemed clean and livable. Upon moving in I found out only 1 girl lived there. The next day a new tenant also moved in. Let's just say he was from a diffeent walk of life. His standard of living was well below mine, and he had no social etiquette or co-living skills. Leaving his dirty plates and pans for up to 6 days or more and leaving his dirty washing all over the kitchen floor. I told the landlord and he basically said 'shut up and deal with it and work it out' not in them words but pretty much something like that. The new tenant was using passive aggression and doing odd things as almost mind challenges, anyway I thought this is not my problem and that I did not have to deal with it and told the landlord I would be terminating the contract as a result of this pig of a man who he had placed in after me. The landlord said there was no way I was getting out of the tenancy without a suitable reason (clearly he had not listened - but like all these cowboy traders money is his god). We exchanged emails for a week and in one email I stated something like 'I will be leaving soon, he is not my problem and I am not required to teach him how to co-live with people'. I had not payed my rent which was due 24 hours ago as I was not happy with the house and my plan was to get him to use the bond as months rent and any days left into the month that I would not be there. Saturday at 4pm I get an email to tell me that all locks have been changed amd that 'if you want to recover your chattels then please call during office hours to pay the rent owed and a £100 late payment fine'... This guy is really on a high horse. The email was sent at 10am. At this stage my rent was overdue by one day. The email does not mention anything about the tenant I had to live with, it states that as rent is overdue by 1 day 'property has been siezed and will be removed in 7 days if rent not paid with fine'. I was told by a friend to call the police before breaking in. None of the other tenants were in after repeated knocks (at least they did not answer). I got back to the house and caalled the police, they informed me that the landlord had in fact broken the 1977 Protection from Eviction Act Section 1. And that I had every legal right to break and enter and get my property. The bathroom window was open and I was able to get into the house but had to break down my bedroom door, a PCO turned up 30 mins later and helped me with my belongings into my vehicle (a good van load). After the van was loaded I drove for 2 mins and pulled up and it hit me I was not technically homeless. The law states that if you live in a AST in a HMO a landlord is required to give you 2 months notice, then he can start court proceedings, and after that apply for a bailiff to attend and remove property. This cowboy trader didn't even give me 1 hours notice. There was a note on the window that said 'if you want to regain your chattels (property) you must call during office hours to pay rent owed and fine. (I mean who even uses the word chattles these days). Did he expect me to walk the streets with just a thin coat and shorts on till Tuesday morning (it was bank holiday and it was also Saturday 5pm). I managed after 2 hours to find place to stay, I was at this point very hungry and fatigued. I have since been staying on sofas, my belongings are all over place stored and I am starting to get painful back and so on. As well as the emotional distress and so on! I am a tough shell and won't even admit to myself when times are bad but my plan is to take this sucker down. I have been to Citizen Advice who were pretty useless, a housing association who were pretty useless, local council who were pretty useless... The only luck I am having is with a solicitor who I am seeing this week, who see to think I have a strong case. The charity Shelter were useful, they gave me a lot of sound advice on the steps to take, such as sending a 'letter before action', seeking out solicitors or no win no fee, local council / organization numbers (of which none worked). I have done a lot of resarch and know quite a lot, such as this rouge landlord is liable to be paying between £100 to £300 a day for every day I am technically homeless or out of the house I was evicted from, plus all sorts of other compensation costs like misuse of bond (not putting it into a deposit protection service (bond and upto 1 to 3 times bond back) plus aggrevated damages. I am seeing solicitors this week who will hopefully take my case on. Because with my paper tenancy agreement and the email sent 32 days later, these two documents are proof that he has broken the law and illegally evicted me. What are people's thoughts here? I am still sleeping around at friends, my work / life mix is strained and my relationship with my girl is also tough as we can't spend time together as much! Please let me know your thoughts.
  2. Can anyone give advise please for young first time tenant, a family friend, who rents residential flat above shop. 1. AST not signed but Commercial Lease. 2. Deposit not protected. 3. No Gas Safety Certificate. 18 year old girl was forced to leave family home. She is a carer in nursing home & not on benefits as landlord refuses housing benefit tenants. Discovered today she has built up debt with utilities & council tax with debt collectors now chasing. She has paid rent though I looked at her tenancy agreement today which I think is illegal. The landlord let's out ground floor to a business but her flat is self contained with own entrance. Can she get out of tenancy? I will let her stay with me for few months rent free so she can sort out debts.
  3. Hi everyone. I'm a new member on here. I came across the site when researching tenancy deposit schemes and I've read through several threads but can't seem to find and guidance in relation to my particular problem. Briefly, in September of last year I agreed to rent a property with a private landlord. I had a few concerns about the property but the landlord assured me they would be dealt with once I moved in. But I needed somewhere to live quickly and my mother paid the deposit. The rent was to be paid by housing benefit. There was mould throughout the property, there was a leak from the soil stack or a blockage causing it to seep out from where the two pipes join, a couple of electrical sockets that were loose from the wall etc. I paid the deposit in cash and received a receipt. After several weeks the landlord had not repaired any of the above despite my texting and phoning him. At the same time he began to phone and text me demanding the rent but there was a delay at the housing benefit and the payment had not yet come through. He threatened in the text messages to come round to the property on specific dates and turf me out and take the keys back. I felt intimidated by him and told him by recorded delivery letter that I was going to give him 28 days notice to leave because he hadn't fixed any of the things he had promised. He had no problem with this and texted the sooner the better and that he still hadn't had the rent. I left the property and asked him for the deposit back and he said he was keeping it because he was still owed money. I then found out online that the deposit should have been protected. I asked him about this so that it could go to a resolution but he would not give me the details but kept on saying that he had protected it. He then came back to me and said that I owed him four months rent for leaving early, fees that he had paid to an electrician to fix a pendant - which was one of the jobs I had asked him to fix - fees for a skip to empty the property even though it was empty when I left etc. I realise I'm rambling on. What I'm trying to determine is whether the tenancy was valid when he didn't protect the deposit? Has he a right to claim back four months rent from me when he didn't protect the deposit in the first place? Did the agreement lose any legitimacy when he failed to do that? I ask because despite my continued asking him he will not return the deposit and I'm thinking about taking it to court. All I want is my deposit back. Nothing else. He has since had the back payments up until the time I left the property. Any advice would be much appreciated. Thanks
  4. Hi all, Will be claiming HB with a tenancy agreement dating back to 2011, it's a full 8 page Assured Shorthold Tenancy document, signed by myself, the landlord and witness. All above board and legit. A few questions though; 1) Would the JC likely question this, given how old the document is? I have claimed JSA before during my tenancy but didn't realise I was entitled to HB until now. 2) I would prefer they do not contact my Landlord (unless for a special investigation or some such) as he has previously expressed unwillingness to co-operate (that said he owns a flat above and THAT tenant had an AST he used to successfully claim HB - can I specify they do not contact him? 3) The rent has since risen but the contract still holds the 2011 amount, would I need to get a new contract in place to claim for the current amount? Thanks, JB
  5. I'm currently resting a property from a private landlord on an AST. A couple of weeks ago the landlord notified me that she would be selling the property but hoped to sell it to another landlord. There were a few viewings and an offer made. She has just informed me that the buyer is not looking to let the property so will be sending the section 21 notice giving me two months to leave (her message actually said three months, but the contract says two). My question is can I leave early? I have a viewing of another property today, and all going well I will make an application. What are my obligations to the landlord once the section 21 has been issued? Can I leave anytime and only pay up to the day I leave? Or do I need to pay for the next two months rent even if I leave early? Can i give the landlord my own notice to leave after I receive the section 21 (contract says I need to give one months notice?). Thanks!
  6. How long is a assured shorthold tenancy valid for one the original 12 months have run out ? Reason i am asking is another person i am helping has been given a s21 notice to quit followed by a n5c claim form for property. The original ast was for a year. Then it was signed up for another year but no paper work exchanged hands. Now in the paperwork provided with the summons the deposit has been protected till the tenancy ends it second year. Two questions 1. Is the s21 notice valid ? 2. The deposit although again protected seems to not have been protected with in 30 days of the satrt of the second year. How can i find this out.
  7. Hi all, I rent a flat from a housing association in London. I am in the process of buying a new-build house which will be ready in January 2016, but our tenancy is a 12 month AST which runs until July 2016. We therefore need to leave before the end of our tenancy. The tenancy agreement grants the landlord a break clause but not the tenant. I spoke to the property manager recently and they are unwilling to let us surrender the tenancy early. We're going in person to meet them on Tuesday and I would like us to come to an amicable agreement. I understand that legally speaking, we are liable for rent until the end of the tenancy or until a new tenant is installed in the flat (whichever is sooner). Our AST states that if we purchase a property during the tenancy the landlord will treat it as a breach of tenancy. Furthermore, that we must use this flat as our only or main home. It does not permit us to assign or sublet the flat. It says that the landlord "may" repossess the flat if we break our tenancy agreement in these ways. I'd like to understand what the ramifications of us leaving the tenancy early are. I will argue that if they agree to let us surrender, we will help to re-advertise the flat and find a new tenant, and hence they will have no void period. But if they don't agree, we will probably leave anyway, return the keys and formally abandon the tenancy. At this point, I understand that a landlord should/must take reasonable steps to re-advertise the flat and find a new tenant, and that our liability to pay the rent ceases at the point they do. We would also be liable to pay any reasonable charges they incur - all of which I am happy to do. Another alternative is to sublet the flat in breach of our agreement. I think we could find sub-tenants quite easily but obviously becoming a landlord myself for five months or so introduces another layer of risk to the probable eviction etc.! I'd be very grateful for any advice or experience from you, so that I can come to a good agreement with the landlord over the next few weeks. Many thanks.
  8. Hi All, I’ve created this post in the search for some answers on a few finer points of my AST Agreement that has recently ended. The LL/LA has come back to me requesting £378 of charges for cleaning and gardening. In my opinion I have left the flat in a clean and tidy condition so much so that the pictures taken on the day of me moving out have been used online to show new tenants! However, the two points I am curious to have answered are: 1. My moving in inventory states that “although untidy at the beginning of the tenancy the garden is to be completely tidied shortly after move in therefore must be tidy at end of tenancy”. Whereas my AST Agreement says “To keep tidy..as at commencement of the tenancy”. Can an inventory be used to state terms different to the AST Agreement? Also I have never had a copy of the check in inventory and the copy of the check in inventory i received from the LA isn’t signed by me. 2. My AST Agreement states that “the Agent must tell the tenant within 14 working days of the end of the tenancy if they propose to make any deductions from the deposit”. The LA took 18 working days to notify me of the deductions from my deposit. I have spoken to a local housing charity who said that this doesn’t hold much weight. If this is the case how come this term is included in the AST Agreement? Any help would be much appreciated
  9. Happy 2015 everyone! Hopefully someone can answer this question for me on this forum. The long and crazy background to this question in on another rental forum (can I post a link)? EDIT: Unfortunately, I can't as a new member. Has any tenant or landlord ever been in a situation where they have rented a flat with a written AST, which was then replaced by a verbal AST? The reason I am asking is that the judge found in the LL favour against four tenants stating that a new verbal AST was entered into in 2012 (four tenants signed a written AST in 2011), making all tenants several and liable for a rent increase. The question now remains which baffles me personally, is can tenants who started off with a written AST then enter a new verbal AST while still in the same property????? The judge said so, so it must be true!! I've never heard of any situation where a new verbal AST is created with the same parties in the same property that overwrites the initial written tenancy??? Has anyone ever heard of this? Any anecdotes, advice or pointers toward legislation would be appreciated. Thanks, BoopDMX85
  10. Hi, I'm one of two tenants (spouse and I) on an Assured Shorthold Tenancy (AST) agreement whose fixed term ends at the end of the month. The agency recently proposed a new fixed term agreement, but we now want to continue on a Statutory Periodic Tenancy. We are aware of the risks, and are willing to take them. We made it absolutely clear that we are not signing another document (so no agreed periodic tenancy). However, the agents still want to charge us £70 per head (£140 in total) for every six month period of the SPT. They justify this with our tenancy agreement which reads among the obligations of the tenant: "To pay £70 inclusive of VAT per tenant & guarantor for each extension of the Tenancy." When pressed that this would be for no work at all, they replied: I've read a number of posts like 218974-Fees-charged-for-going-into-Statutory-Periodic-Tenancy or 395672-Rollover-To-Periodic-Tenancy (links removed due to insufficient privileges), but I think our case is marginally different: Our lease does not specify what an "extension" is. The agents claim it's not for them. However I cannot see that this actually in my (and not the landlord's) interest to "renew the tenant references" and to "ensure their insurance is still in place". The question is now: what can I do about it? We will definitely contact the Landlord and see if we can work it out with him directly (this may take some time, as I only have postal address). But with respect to the agency - is there a good strategy to move on? Play the delay game: Just do nothing. Is there a fixed interpretation of the term "extension"? (* see footnote) Dispute the fee as unfair (are there precedents)? What are the consequences of non-payment? I mean £140 is a significant amount of money, but probably not enough to being sued out of the house for breach of contract (I can live with two months' notice, or I would not be going for a SPT, but anything shorter would be a pain. Same holds with any kind of legal proceedings). Thanks in advance! Footnote: (*) Ha. Just found the following at the end of the tenancy agreement: This would imply, that a SPT is NOT an extension. But unfortunately I am not a lawyer.
  11. Help ! Writing on behalf of a friend - with residential rental problem. Friend viewed a flat during the day with a known high street estate agent. Flat seemed nice (internally) and friend agreed to rent it. Agreement was drawn up - AST - for 1 year. As friend from overseas, Agent asked for 6 months payment up front and also 6 weeks deposit. However, upon moving in friend discovered many problems that were not obvious or visible when first viewed: 1) There were ac ventilation machines for the whole block on a roof close to the flat - which vibrate all night and make so much noise that friend is unable to sleep 2)There are heating pipes beneath the flat that cause the internal temperature to be apx 30-32c at night, every night 3) There is a large service pipe outside the living room which creates noise, smell and dust to enter into the flat. It makes friend cough, the smell and dust is so bad. 4) The communal areas are dirty. Rubbish is left out constantly. It is unhealthy and dangerous. Friend has had all complaints acknowledged by both the management of the block and the estate agent - BUT neither has done anything. Management has offered to put in double glazing. But this does not erase the other complaints. Friend just wants to cancel the AST and move. In fact, friend has temporarily left to stay elsewhere just to get some sleep for 7-10 days and hoping in the meantime that the situation gets resolved. What can be done? Clearly the agent has taken the money, received their commission and is holding a deposit (which would be held under the TDS scheme) - so they are in no hurry to cancel this agreement. I suggested that the agent finds a replacement tenant and helps friend find an alternative flat. But so far agent refuses to help friend. Is there anything friend can do to cancel this AST and maybe even get compensation ? I would have thought that if an agent was aware of pipes making noises/smells they should have had a duty to divulge such info to in-coming tenants?? Would be most grateful for advice. Thank you.
  12. Hi there, My husband and I have been left in a bit of a pickle with debts and low wages. After doing much research we have decided the best option for us is to go bankrupt. Also we are going to need to claim housing benefit as his wages have just been cut. We rent our house, and I've looked through the tenancy agreement for any clauses about bankruptcy or housing benefit, but neither are mentioned anywhere. Can I therefore assume that we can go ahead on both counts and legally nothing can be done to evict us on these grounds? We're good quiet tenants and apart from 6 months of late rent payments, we've never been any trouble. The rent has been paid on time for the last 5 months and there were zero issues on our most recent house inspection. I'd appreciate any advice anyone can offer. It's a scary time for us. Thanks in advance.
  13. Hi, apologies in advance if a there has been a post similar to this however i have had a good look and can't see any. My issue is this: I'm currently in a fixed term AST however the letting agents have said i can assign my half of the contract over to a new tenant, there is absolutely no problem with this however my flatmate has now said she wants to vacate the property also. After checking if we terminate the contract we are liable to pay 10% of each months rent for the remainder of the contract. However If i leave and get the contract assigned to a new tenant and then a month later my flatmate leaves by assigning her part of the contract over to a new tenant will this be okay as there will still be a tenant on the original contract even though it is not one of the original tenants? Or does the contract need to still be in one of the original tenants names? Thanks in advance, apologies if its a bit confusing!
  14. hi, i need some urgent advice. I was due to let my flat this friday, signed the agreement, ready to move in with my partner. we have now split and i've been told by the estate agents i cannot back out. This will leave my homeless for the short term. Does anyone know what i can do about this? I know ill be inconveniencing the new tenants but there is really nothing i can do.
  15. Am I right in understanding that they would need to serve a notice to quit, and once expired they can seek an eviction order? Or is there something I'm missing? Thanks in advance
  16. Hi, I hope someone can help clarify what we should do. I've roamed the internet, but am just confused! We (me and OH) are coming to the end of an AST (we live in London). Back in June, we confirmed that we wished to renew, and agreed to a rent increase (£100 extra pcm- ouch), and the Letting Agent said they would be in touch closer to the date our AST expires (23rd July), to arrange to sign another year's contract. All this was by email, and we've not heard anything since. I understand that if another contract is not signed, then the tenancy becomes a periodic tenancy? Or are we obliged to vacate the property? The rent increase is also troubling us- We've not received any paperwork about the increase, other than the email back in June from the letting agent stating that the landlord was asking for £100 extra, which we agreed to by email, after trying to negotiate a lesser rise (no dice!), also by email. We pay monthly by standing order- should we continue to pay the present amount, or amend it to the inreased amount? If we don't increase the amount, we are worried that the landlord will give us notice- and we cannot afford to move at the moment. But we haven't received anything formal in terms of the increase. Hope this all makes sense. Any advice? Thanks, V
  17. Hi, I need advice on exact breakage date of the contract. I have AST agreement. I have send to the agency termination request on 21 June, and provided a copy of it on 22 June, with request to terminate agreement by 22 July 2013. Afterwards, I have received response from agency with the following: Now, the questions are: 1. Is it lawful for the agency/landlord to force me to pay until 20 August? Break clause says "one month notice". Even given written notice is required (to which email doesn't count), I supplied the notice on 22 June, so tenancy should be given up on 23 July. Is that correct? 2. Is it lawful to force me to pay until 20 October 2013 if they will not find another tenant before the date? As per my understanding, the flat is substandard and I pay more than potential tenant might pay, so it might take time for agency to find high paying tenant. 3. How lawful are the fees imposed on me (early release fee of £114), as well as obligation to pay utilities and council tax, even if property remains vacant. I could not find any mentioning of such fees in the contract. I would be very thankful for your help.
  18. Hi, I apologise in advance as i'm sure this question has been asked before, I really need to make sure my thinking is correct before challenging my landlady (again). I've been in my flat for around 22 months now and began with a fixed term AST for 1 year with monthly payments. The only Termination time was at the 6 months "Break point" and included a 2 month notice period. At the end of the year the landlady and i agreed to allow the contract to roll on a monthly basis (for the past 10 months). On the 12th June I gave written notice saying I'll be out of the flat within one month (also aligned to the date of rental payment). She replied saying that i had to serve two months notice as in line with the original AST. I checked the contract and according to that it states: "16.2 If the Tenant stays in the property after the Tenancy has expired then a statutory periodic tenancy will arise on a monthly basis". Having done some reading around my understanding is that the tenant only has to provide one months notice whilst the landlady is required to provide two months notice in the case of defaulting to a a statutory periodic tenancy. Is this right? I'm hoping to go back to the landlady and say. Here's my contract saying i am on a statutory periodic tenancy, i have no obligation then to serve more than one month of notice following my last rental payment. I have quite a big rental deposit that i could do with so don't want to become embroiled in a war over it! Many thanks in advance.
  19. Currently have an AST due for renewal. Have paid £70 for the letting agent's "contract fees" for 12 months renewal. However, since this me and my partner, whose father was guarantor, have split up. She has moved back with her parents and is looking for her own place, and we have mutually agreed that I can continue living in the property. The contract has not yet been signed and needs to be done soon. The main problem is I have no family who could act as a guarantor, and the letting agents insists on one. My ex partner's Dad has said he would be a guarantor on a 6 monthly basis. It's a nice gesture, but to be honest I'd much rather not put my ex partner's Dad under that sort of potential financial obligation. I'd much rather be splitting any such ties. Should I just sign for 6 months with ex partner's Dad as guarantor? Might not signing and going on a rolling monthly contract be an option? The letting agent has not touted this as a possible option, I guess because of the revenue they make charging contract fees for 2 minutes work. So I suspect the letting agent will be against this idea. Many thanks for any suggestions. Edit: probably appropriate to note in terms of employment, I am almost guaranteed a 12 month contract from September 2013, but a permanent position is a strong possibility.
  20. Hello all, I haven't been on CAG for a while (previously related to credit and debt issues), however, I now wish to clarify the situation regarding unprotected deposits. Briefly, we have an AST (commenced Apr '08) that is now continuing as a periodic and the deposit was never protected at it's commencement. We are still tenants, and will be continuing as such for the immediate future, however, we wish to submit a claim for return of the deposit and, if appropriate, for 3x deposit plus any allowable costs and interest charges as well. However, in reading up on here I am somewhat confused as the law which covers this issue appears to have been subject to various case law interpretations and revisions since it's origination. The sticky threads on here all appear to relate to 2008 but later posts seem to contradict some of those earlier comments. There also appears to be issues between submitting a N208 or an N1 claim since one appears to be for purely return of a deposit and the other for a wider claim. I've been reviewing various posts and it looks like whilst previously, being a continuing tenant did not preclude claiming for return of the deposit plus a penalty, now one can only claim for the penalty. For example the following thread provides useful information but it appears out of date when compared to other comments elsewhere. http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/showthread.php?126261-TDS-Court-Claims-Wording If someone could perhaps point me in the direction of the relevant posts that can shed any light on this I would appreciate it. Many thanks UOTE
  21. I am a landlord that has signed an Assured Shorthold Tenancy agreement with my tenants for a term of 12 months. However, there is a provision in my agreement that states: "It is further agreed that in the absence of a replacement Agreement this Agreement shall be deemed to be extended until such time as at least two calendar months advance written notice is given by either party of their intention to determine this Agreement but without prejudice nevertheless to any claim by either party against the other in respect of any antecedent breach of this Agreement or the conditions herein contained." My question is this: at the end of the 12 month term of the AST can I still insist on 2 months notice being required for the tenants to vacate or am I to understand that since the AST automatically becomes a statutory periodic (or "rolling") tenancy, my original terms are no longer in force, and that the tenants need only give the normal statutory one months notice?
  22. Hi, I'm looking for an Assured Shorthold Tenancy contract to give to my tenants. I've found a wealth of various approaches and companies offering this online for prices anywhere from £10 to £70. But which one to chose?! I wondered if anyone has any recommendations or comments about where best to get a contract from? Thank you!
  23. Hello, I'm really hoping someone will be able to give me some advice, I don't know what to do. I moved into my flat last week (4th Jan). It's in a converted Victorian terrace. When I looked round I thought the flat had a musty smell but the lettings agency told me it was because the flat had been empty for a few months. Despite my best efforts to air the flat, I can't get the smell to go. The carpet lifts up in a couple of corners and I can see that the carpet underlay is pretty black and smells of mould. I can't see any other signs of mould around the flat apart from in the bathroom, which is windowless and has no ventilation (there is some mould inside the cupboards). The bathroom also smells terribly of drains. I've contacted the landlord about both issues but haven't heard back from him at all. What I want to know is, do I have any rights to end my AST early? I hate being in the flat because of the smell. Even if he fixes the bathroom and puts in an extractor fan, the rest of the flat will still smell. Most of what I've read online implies that mould and damp is down to "tenants lifestyles" - but I've only been there a week! Would really appreciate any advice you have. Thanks Kate
  24. hi im wondering if ANYONE can help me..... i have got behind in my rent due to work issues, im on a AST (Assuerd Shorthold Tennancy) BUT im out of the tennany aggreement... my letting agency have given me a section 21 which ran out today at 5.30 - my aggency is now telling me they can go to the court tomorrow morning and apply for a possession order which will take 48 hours and they will be able to remove me on thursday at 9am.... but as far as ive read they would need a possession warrant to remove me? if they get a possesion order by thursday how long will it take them to get a possession warrant..... its all baffal to me... can ANYONE help please......
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