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Washing machine broke... landlord problem... want to cry


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Hello... this forum is my only hope to save my sanity.

 

Last week our washing machine stopped spinning. It got 'fixed' and worked for a couple more spins and then broke again. This time the company that fixed it the first time diagnosed it as old and kapoot. They phoned the landlord and he said he'd replace it and would ring the following day (which was yesterday).

 

So at midday yesterday I rand the landlord seeing what he'd done about the problem and he said he'd not got round to it but he would. Last night I rang the company to see if they'd heard from him and they hadn't.

 

This morning I rang the landlord again to tell him that if he put the order through today we'd get the machine the same day and I could finally do some washing (it's backing up and I've just got a new job - you can imagine how stressful this is for a girl like me!). He told me he had rang last night and ordered one, so I rang the company and they'd not heard a thing.

 

I waited an hour and rang the landlord again telling him that they'd not got his order and that I'd keep ringing him until it was fixed as it was a desperate situation. Each time I rung him he'd say the company weren't answering his calls, but each time I rung the company they said they'd not had a phone call from him and that they couldnt ring him as it wasn't their problem.

 

Now it's got to the point that I'm had a massive arguement with my landlord because basically he's just playing us off and not actually ringing the company (I know this because each time I've rung them they've answered straight away) and the company are stressed because I keep ringing them.

 

I dont even know what my rights are, all I know is that this landlord is totally useless. I've mentioned before on here that we keep getting shocks off the light switches and that we've got the council involved (who have found out that the landlord doesnt have a proper licence).

 

I'm almost in tears over this, I know it's just a washing machine but I really dont have time or the money to take my clothes to a laudrettes. My friend is letting me use her machine but she lives quite a walk from my house and I'm becoming a burdon on her too (she's had to deal with all 5 of our washloads!)

 

Advice would be so greatly appreciated.... pleeeeeeese help!!

 

Helen

 

Xx

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Hi, I have not read your posts re the light switches, but have you studied your contract with the landlord.

 

There should be clauses in there that state what actions (s)he is to take if fittings fail.

 

What are they?

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Hi, I have not read your posts re the light switches, but have you studied your contract with the landlord.

 

There should be clauses in there that state what actions (s)he is to take if fittings fail.

 

What are they?

It doesnt say anything in it about fixtures and fittings being repaired by the landlord. Is there a basic law that covers this?

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If the washing machine was there when you moved in and/or it's on the inventory list- it would be landlord's responsibility to replace it, unless your actions caused it to break. Speak to the people who deemed the washing machine as broken down beyond repair and ask them to email/fax it to you. You may need it in writing in future- especially the fact that it wasn't you who broke it.

 

If the machine was yours- landlord has nothing to do with it.

 

There is no specific time line in legislation for how soon repairs have to be dealt with- the only requirement is that of "reasonability". I know that you are certain that the landlord is playing silly buggers but you must not lose your rag as this is counterproductive. It is also too soon to call him unreasonable. He was only given this info yesterday (?)

Call him, apologise for your temper, suck up to his wonderful ability to deal with matters and his brilliant understanding of needs of his tenants, explain new job-better money-rent even more assured then before, blah blah blah.

 

Choose your battles- this one is not worth it. Play nice for now in order to achieve what you want. It's not time yet for claws and teeth.

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Hello... this forum is my only hope to save my sanity.

 

Last week our washing machine stopped spinning. It got 'fixed' and worked for a couple more spins and then broke again. This time the company that fixed it the first time diagnosed it as old and kapoot. They phoned the landlord and he said he'd replace it and would ring the following day (which was yesterday).

 

So at midday yesterday I rand the landlord seeing what he'd done about the problem and he said he'd not got round to it but he would. Last night I rang the company to see if they'd heard from him and they hadn't.

 

This morning I rang the landlord again to tell him that if he put the order through today we'd get the machine the same day and I could finally do some washing (it's backing up and I've just got a new job - you can imagine how stressful this is for a girl like me!). He told me he had rang last night and ordered one, so I rang the company and they'd not heard a thing.

 

I waited an hour and rang the landlord again telling him that they'd not got his order and that I'd keep ringing him until it was fixed as it was a desperate situation. Each time I rung him he'd say the company weren't answering his calls, but each time I rung the company they said they'd not had a phone call from him and that they couldnt ring him as it wasn't their problem.

 

Now it's got to the point that I'm had a massive arguement with my landlord because basically he's just playing us off and not actually ringing the company (I know this because each time I've rung them they've answered straight away) and the company are stressed because I keep ringing them.

 

I dont even know what my rights are, all I know is that this landlord is totally useless. I've mentioned before on here that we keep getting shocks off the light switches and that we've got the council involved (who have found out that the landlord doesnt have a proper licence).

 

I'm almost in tears over this, I know it's just a washing machine but I really dont have time or the money to take my clothes to a laudrettes. My friend is letting me use her machine but she lives quite a walk from my house and I'm becoming a burdon on her too (she's had to deal with all 5 of our washloads!)

 

Advice would be so greatly appreciated.... pleeeeeeese help!!

 

Helen

 

Xx

 

Dear Helen

 

Tell your landlord that you will stop paying rent untill the situation is resolved and that he is in breach of contract.

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Must disagree with that Monty...not a good course of action to take. Perhaps they could use their right of offset, but that is slightly different to withholding rent.

7 years in retail customer service

 

Expertise in letting and rental law for 6 years

 

By trade - I'm an IT engineer working in the housing sector.

 

Please note that any posts made by myself are for information only and should not and must not be taken as correct or factual. If in doubt, consult with a solicitor or other person of equal legal standing.

 

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Dear Helen

 

Tell your landlord that you will stop paying rent untill the situation is resolved and that he is in breach of contract.

 

Ouch; dangerous waters. Wth security of tenure being so very weak, this situation does not warrant such a strong action. Withholding of rent should be left as a very last option, when all other avenues are exhausted. Whilst this may be a very stressful problem for the tenant, broken washing machine is nowhere near the top of the scale when it comes to disrepair problems.

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Given the OP's statement in respect of trying to effect remedy I would suggest this as a position to adopt, and execute if there is no resolution. She has tried to get amicable resolution and under the AST is not able to make full use or enjoyment of the property if the landlord has breached the agreement in not making repairs to the white goods.

 

So I disagree with you too!!

 

Pick the bones out of that!

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There are enough avenues to pursue without ever having to resort to withholding rent in this fashion. For example, the tenant can use their right of offset, and perform the required repairs and deduct the amount it has cost them from the rent.

 

Withholding rent is not only in severe breach of the tenancy(much more severe a breach than the landlords disrepair breach), but as Joa says impacts seriously on the security of tenure.

 

As there is(as I have outlined) no reason to ever withhold rent unilaterally, no experienced advisor on the topic(or certainly none I have ever known) would ever advise this course of action.

7 years in retail customer service

 

Expertise in letting and rental law for 6 years

 

By trade - I'm an IT engineer working in the housing sector.

 

Please note that any posts made by myself are for information only and should not and must not be taken as correct or factual. If in doubt, consult with a solicitor or other person of equal legal standing.

 

Please click the star if I have helped!!

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Pick the bones out of that!

 

Happily :)

 

 

 

They phoned the landlord and he said he'd replace it and would ring the following day (which was yesterday).

 

So at midday yesterday ......

 

Still think it would be reasonable to risk the tenancy?

 

And by the way; you really don't want to pick bones with me, I am the resident potty mouth mama :lol:

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The other thing you need to bear in mind Monty is that this is, after all, just a washing machine, and not for example no hot water/no front door. This is not meant to belittle the OPs situation, at all, just to put it into perspective.

7 years in retail customer service

 

Expertise in letting and rental law for 6 years

 

By trade - I'm an IT engineer working in the housing sector.

 

Please note that any posts made by myself are for information only and should not and must not be taken as correct or factual. If in doubt, consult with a solicitor or other person of equal legal standing.

 

Please click the star if I have helped!!

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If the landlord does not conform then I still suggest as I stated above:

 

Tell your landlord that you will stop paying rent until the situation is resolved and that he is in breach of contract.

 

You can of course deduct the amount to remedy the landlords lack of remedy, if you so wish...........

 

This is both reasonable and justified.

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I think i would make a nice landlord, i've been a tenant and had it good and bad over the yrs and would try my best to get problems fixed quickly, and maybe this landlord in question isn't a nice guy, but really, i would not like to be chased over a problem in a short space of time and 24 hrs is pushing it a bit (even for a nice guy like me!)

 

That out of the way, i must say Helen that you need to start from basics here. You need to know your rights before you start thinking about 'assertive action' of any kind.

Find your tenancy agreement (assuming you have one!!?) and go through it. If you need help to find out what your position is and what you can (or cannot) demand of the landlord then try Shelter for advice:

 

Shelter: Renting and leasehold

 

Also you mention 'shocks from the electric switches'. This is a concern and unacceptable. What was the councils opinion and what action was taken, if any. What was the nature of the licence that they said the landlord did not have?

 

Get this down on paper and start from there and if you need to talk to someone on the phone then please ring the free 'Shelter' number for help on 0808 800 4444 - 8am to midnight 7 days a week.

:!: -Any advise I give is based purely on my own experience. It should not be solely relied upon as I am NOT a legal expert and any major decisions you make should not be based on my opinion alone -

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Just read your 'light switches' thread. Looks like you got some great advice and the beginnings of a positive outcome on that one.

:!: -Any advise I give is based purely on my own experience. It should not be solely relied upon as I am NOT a legal expert and any major decisions you make should not be based on my opinion alone -

HFC Bank - Davey vs HFC

Barclays - Monthly payments made

Cahoot - Agreement received, awaiting 2nd agreement after DCA.

MBNA1&2 - Agreements received. (Currently in limbo)

Halifax - Davey vs Halifax/Cabot

MINT - Davey vs Mint

Amex - Davey vs Amex

Cap1 **WON** £1,500 Written Off Davey vs Cap1

 

Never Sign Anything

 

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If the landlord does not conform then I still suggest as I stated above:

 

Tell your landlord that you will stop paying rent until the situation is resolved and that he is in breach of contract.

 

You can of course deduct the amount to remedy the landlords lack of remedy, if you so wish...........

 

This is both reasonable and justified.

 

:rolleyes:

Little knowledge is a very dangerous thing.

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:rolleyes:

Little knowledge is a very dangerous thing.

 

So I guess you like to pay for services that you don't actually receive?

 

The landlord will be obliged to keep any white good items in good repair and clearly the OP has tried all reasonable efforts to encourage the landlord to conform to his/her obligations. Getting the item repaired and with holding the costs for doing so is reasonable if sufficient time has been allowed for the landlord to remedy the situation. (Personally I would threaten to withold all of the rent).

 

I have been in a similar situation and the mere threat of such action achieved the desired results.

 

Refrain from silly insults........my advice is given on my own experiences and in good faith.

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So I guess you like to pay for services that you don't actually receive?

 

Puhlease, the OP has been without a washing machine for few days. Even if she owned it, I doubt she could have had it sorted within a day or two.

 

clearly the OP has tried all reasonable efforts to encourage the landlord to conform to his/her obligations. Getting the item repaired and with holding the costs for doing so is reasonable if sufficient time has been allowed for the landlord to remedy the situation.

You have hit the nail on the head; sufficient time needs to be given.

 

I have been in a similar situation and the mere threat of such action achieved the desired results.

This is what happens when people had one experience of something and extrapolate it to all similar circumstances. It is called amateurism. It's dangerous and fool hardy. It makes some people think that because their singular experience they are well equipped to argue their point with someone who has many years of experience in housing advice sector- I am of course talking about myself- or who have many years of experience in private rental sector, like Sheddy.

 

 

 

Refrain from silly insults........my advice is given on my own experiences and in good faith.

 

What insult? where? which ones? Huh? :eek:

And you know what they say about good intentions?

 

The only reason I am getting personal (because everyone will start whining in a minute to be nice to each other) is because I personally thing that bad advice ruins lives. Actual, real lives. So please, refrain from making statements but rather offer suggestions and be open to experience and knowledge of others, especially if you haven't been up to your ears in advice sector for past 7 years.

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This serves no purpose. The OP can chose their own course of action given all the posts made on this.

 

You seem to have some problem with others posting their advice and experience and reduce it to insults and redicule. You sad person

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Just to clear things up, it was last weekend the washing maching first broke, and we knew by Thursday that it was properly broken.

 

The licence that the landlord has not got is something to do with HMOs. According to the council, the landlord cannot issue a section 21 without this licence, and cannot get this licence without supplying a recent list of checks (gas, elec etc). As we are still getting shocked, I'm guessing he's not done this.

 

I've not got personal and insulted the landlord, my beef with him was that he tried telling me how he's too busy to sort this out, when one 5 min phone call to the company would have it sorted. He doesnt even need to deliver or fit the machine.

 

Today is Sunday, I got an empty promise last night saying it would be sorted today. Still nothing, and I've text him asking for a rough time as I will be going out shortly (to the cinema, to cheer myself up! (in dirty clothes)).

 

As for witholding rent, my contract states I must pay within 14 days before they can start taking action against me. I've just secured my 3rd year house with the money I was going to use as rent, but I get a bursary on the 13th and will pay him then. Until that day he can think I'm witholding it because of his actions (or lack of!).

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Hopefully this awful situation will not last much longer. I cannot imagine how you've coped since Thursday. I gather you are a student- perhaps there is a launderette on campus or nearby?

 

What will happen if your landlord brings a new machine way before 13th and you cannot pay him? He might think that all this fuss was solely designed to delay the rent payment. I know he has been a bit of nightmare in the past; so no love lost between you two. But in the future, you may wish to take a deep breath and relax a little bit when it comes to really minor issues , like not having a washing machine for few days.

 

And Monty.....erm...are you aware that once you submit a post, it gets emailed to a subscriber? Even if you edit your original post so quickly that it doesn't say "edited" on the bottom? :lol:

Very naughty boy you are, oh yeah- I'll keep that email, in case you forget you really insulted and "rediculed" who. :lol:

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This serves no purpose. The OP can chose their own course of action given all the posts made on this.

 

You seem to have some problem with others posting their advice and experience and reduce it to insults and redicule. You sad person

 

Ordinarily Monty I would agree with you. But here we are not giving advice on how someone gets their TV refunded at Argos or similar, like other sections of this forum. We are talking about someones home. And in this context, the opinion you have given goes far beyond just your opinion, and instead enters the realm of extremely dangerous advice.

 

I welcome your contribution, but much as you ask Joa to not ridicule and insult, I would please ask you to realise when you are wrong - and in this situation you unfortunately are. Not so that me or Joa can look all smug and like "we told you so", but instead to prevent the OP from following a potentially very dangerous road.

7 years in retail customer service

 

Expertise in letting and rental law for 6 years

 

By trade - I'm an IT engineer working in the housing sector.

 

Please note that any posts made by myself are for information only and should not and must not be taken as correct or factual. If in doubt, consult with a solicitor or other person of equal legal standing.

 

Please click the star if I have helped!!

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Hopefully this awful situation will not last much longer. I cannot imagine how you've coped since Thursday. I gather you are a student- perhaps there is a launderette on campus or nearby?

 

What will happen if your landlord brings a new machine way before 13th and you cannot pay him? He might think that all this fuss was solely designed to delay the rent payment. I know he has been a bit of nightmare in the past; so no love lost between you two. But in the future, you may wish to take a deep breath and relax a little bit when it comes to really minor issues , like not having a washing machine for few days.

 

And Monty.....erm...are you aware that once you submit a post, it gets emailed to a subscriber? Even if you edit your original post so quickly that it doesn't say "edited" on the bottom? :lol:

Very naughty boy you are, oh yeah- I'll keep that email, in case you forget you really insulted and "rediculed" who. :lol:

 

Go for it.........

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Monty,

 

What you don't seem to understand is that after a tenant withholds their rent (even with 'good' reason), the most likely next-step for the landlord in question is to begin eviction proceedings. Landlords don't often muck about when it comes to rent, and getting it late or not at all is the quickest way to sour relations. In most ASTs, a landlord can issue a Notice to Quit at the expiry of the fixed term/after the initial fixed term that gives only two months' notice. Having no washing machine may be a problem for the OP, but being evicted because the landlord thinks they're a rent risk is an even bigger one. Witholding the rent, as stated before, should be a last resort to a serious and substantial problem.

 

BK - this really hasn't gone on for long enough to warrant you ringing the landlord or the company like this; I do feel for you, it's hell without a washing machine in your property, but the test of reasonableness must apply. If there's a laundrette nearby you could ask him to contribute to your coin bag. I would honestly give him a few days to sort this out.

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Monty,

 

What you don't seem to understand is that after a tenant withholds their rent (even with 'good' reason), the most likely next-step for the landlord in question is to begin eviction proceedings. Landlords don't often muck about when it comes to rent, and getting it late or not at all is the quickest way to sour relations. In most ASTs, a landlord can issue a Notice to Quit at the expiry of the fixed term/after the initial fixed term that gives only two months' notice. Having no washing machine may be a problem for the OP, but being evicted because the landlord thinks they're a rent risk is an even bigger one. Witholding the rent, as stated before, should be a last resort to a serious and substantial problem.

 

BK - this really hasn't gone on for long enough to warrant you ringing the landlord or the company like this; I do feel for you, it's hell without a washing machine in your property, but the test of reasonableness must apply. If there's a laundrette nearby you could ask him to contribute to your coin bag. I would honestly give him a few days to sort this out.

 

The OP has tried to remedy the situation, possibly one final attempt should be made. I would then have the machine repaired and deduct the amount from the rent (I repeat that is what I WOULD DO). I had a similar situation a few years ago and just the threat of withholding some or all of the rent achieved the desired result. I am a little more direct and don;t take any nonsense BUT always take the gentle approach first before resorting to a fair and expedient resolution.

 

I am well aware of ASTA's, I have drafted several. The key provision I would use relates to the tenants ability to enjoy the use of the premises which is clearly not possible if the white goods are defective. As I mentioned, the OP should try one last time to resolve.

 

Depends how strongly the OP wishes to enforce their rights.

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