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  1. Hi there, I'm having some problems to get the balance of my deposit back, this is £290. I have sent 3 emails to my former landlord and he said that I'm his lodger, I don't have any right and they are not willing to give me anything back. The problem is I'm not his lodger, he didn't live in the property. The landlord is a business of 2 Spanish guys (agency) taking advantage of other foreigners in London. They rent properties through letting agencies and they sublet every inch in the house to people. We were living in London 8 people in a house with one bathroom. As far as I know the owner of the house doesn't know what is happening in her house, but my landlord doesn't want to give me her details nor the letting agency details neither. The agency who rented me the house keeps partly the deposits of other tenants saying that the walls need to be repainted or things like that. My former flatmates had the same problem as me. In my case, they are charging me for a mould which grew in the bedroom due poor insulation, for the cleaning of that mould and for the curtains (which are dirty because of the mould and they were so high I couldn't remove them to wash them up). They are charging me for the walls (were dirty before I moved there, but they didn't do a check-out to the previous tenant and they are charging me for it) and for one night I did not sleep there. This agency are making fraudulent contracts. My contract says "Licence to occupy" and it says "This agreement is not intended to confer exclusive possession upon the licensee, nor it is intended to create the relationship of landlord and tenant between the parties. The Licensee shall not be entitled to an assured tenancy or a statutory periodic tenancy under the Housing Act 1988 or to any other statutory secure of tenure now or upon the determination of the Licence. The Licensee accepts that this Licence does not confer any statutory protection and/or rights that would otherwise be applicable to an assured tenancy or a statutory periodic tenancy under the Housing Act 1988". I contacted Shelter and they said that the agreement is not legal as I was a tenant, not a lodger, as the landlord is an agency and they do not share the property with us. A legal advisor in Shelter told me that I can go to court and make a claim because the agency didn't protect my deposit despite the agreement says. Does anybody know what can I do in this case? This agency does not want to talk to me nor to reply my emails. They took my money unfairly and they are doing the same to other foreigners as people leave the property and they do not know how to claim their money back. So they keep doing the same over and over again. They are taking advantage mainly of Spaniards who come to the UK without knowing how the system works. Is there any way I can report them? If so, where? I don't mind the money, but I want to stop them to do the same to other people. Many thanks.
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