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The letting agency asked us to produce an inventory


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Just got the keys to a new flat today and fully expected to do an inventory check with the letting agent. However the agent told us that she had not been supplied with an inventory by the landlord. Apparently the agency was only responsible for finding tenants and are not managing the property for the owner.

Anyway, she told us that there might be an inventory at the property (there wasn't) and if not, WE SHOULD PRODUCE ONE OURSELVES!

 

Well, my housemate and I made notes on everything and took lots of photos but I don't think we'll be doing the landlord's work for him. So I'm curious as to why they asked us to produce our own inventory. Apparently the letting agents will do the checkout when we come to leave so is there anything potentially sinister in that, do you think?

Moreover, can an inventory be produced at a later date?

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Not sure how the agent can complete a 'check out' when they have not carried out a 'check in report'?

 

It would be prudent to draw a list (to protect you) + photos as you have done. Write to the landlord immediately, their details should be in the section 48 notice contained within your agreement. You could write something along the lines of 'in absence of you or agent provided an inventory, we list all contents of flat. Again, it would be prudent when doing photographs is to have a newspaper photographed as evidence of when you did this. You could always call the owner and see if there is an inventory in his possession.

 

It is unfortunate that the landlord had proceed to let without an inventory and the agent didnt press him for one, or at least do a check in. cc the agent into the correspondance. As no inventory has been produced, check the landlord has protected your deposit on the appropriate accredited scheme.

 

Regards

 

Pebble - effective landlord solutions.

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You should not be advertising your company on this forum - post has been reported.

All help is merely my opinion only - please seek legal advice if you need to as I am only qualified in SEN law.

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Indeed, but if you read the rules of the forum here:http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/forum-rules-please-read/9-forum-rules-please-read.html it clearly shows that you should only be providing advice as a person, rather than a business, otherwise it could be construed as touting for business.

 

I appreciate you are a new user and may not know the forum rules, but IMO this is not allowed under the site rules and so I have reported the post in order that a mod may clarify this situation.

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All help is merely my opinion only - please seek legal advice if you need to as I am only qualified in SEN law.

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Hi Tigs.

The link doesn't show in any post or in the signature, so it's not a problem.

If the link were to reproduced in a post or as part of the OP's signature, then we would need to moderate it.

Thank's for your vigilance.

Regards, Rooster.

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Thanks, Pebble. Our deposit is with the Deposit Protection Service and ,yes, we'll certainly be writing up a detailed inventory of our own and we had it independently witnessed, too. The flat certainly has issues so these things do need to be brought to the owner's attention. We'll also include a note that this inventory was produced because none was provided and that the landlord and letting agent were absent. All parties will get copies with a CD-Rom/prints of the photos. The landlord isn't local and I get the feeling that it will be difficult to deal with him if anything important arises.

 

I don't know how they'd do a check out either in these circumstances.

 

Anyway, the following advice is found on the Shelter webpages:

 

If your landlord or agent won't provide an inventory, you can make one yourself and get an independent witness (someone who doesn't live in the property) to sign it and send a copy to the landlord. You can use our sample inventory form to get started. It also helps if you take photos of the property (especially any existing damage) when you first move in.

 

Shelter: Making an inventory

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No Problem.

 

By the sounds of it you definately have this all in hand. Trust that this can be done, without too much 'hassel for you'. Additionally, when you send him 'the inventory' send it via registered post (wait 48hrs and get a print out via royal mail website, as confirmation of delivert), proof of posting and normal post also. As you state in your post ' things may be difficult between you + landlord. At least this way, there can be no absence of doubt that your landlord did not receceive it.

 

Regards

 

Pebble - effective landlord solutions

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you could also charge the landlord a fee for producing this inventory - as agents sometimes do... then if thats not paid withhold the inventory but have it dated/witnessed etc

 

Then the boot is on your foot IF there is any problems with the checkout.

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I'm not sure on what certain ideas are based in the advise given in this thread, but the tenant should, under no circumstances, make out and send to the landlord/agent their own version of an inventory. It is entirely up to the landlord to fulfil this obligation.

 

As I found to my detriment once, any inventory that has not been made by an inventories clerk MAY not stand up in court if the need to defend a claim for withholding the deposit for damage is made.

I had an IC do the original inventory in this case, and when it came to checkout, they weren't available for a few days so I did the checkout myself. The comparison didn't match up due to extensive damage done to the bathroom(ie tiles ripped off, glass broken, toilet actually removed!!!)and that the property had not been professionally cleaned as stated it should be in the tenancy agreement.

I informed the tenant I would be withholding their deposit unless they paid for the damage. Next thing I know I'm being sued for the return of the deposit. In court the judge asked who had done the inventory report. I told him I'd done it and he asked if how I, as the LL, and someone not experienced in inventories, could give a qualified and impartial report. He then stated that as I could not be regarded as impartial I could not give an impartial report and found in favour of the tenant.

 

Basically, what I'm saying is, If the LL or the agents can't be bothered to do things properly, then why should you do it for them. Besides which, any inventory you make, if you have a problem at the end of the tenancy, would be no good for them in court, so it would be deemed that no inventory existed, thus making this a completely futile exercise.

 

If you really want an inventory done, speak to the LL and let him know that there is no inventory and he really needs to get an IC to do one ASAP.

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Thanks for relating your own experience, ShortlyTdwarf.

 

We are quite aware that production of an inventory is NOT our responsibility and that given that the LL and Agency do not have one, they can't prove that any problems with the checkout were caused by us. After all, there is no piece of paper signed by tenant and landlord in which we agree on the state of the property.

 

In the end we have taken this action because there are a few things in the property that need some attention. Our hope is that this will first prompt the LL in addressing these things. Later (should there be any problems in having the deposit returned) we now have it on record that we produced an inventory because none was provided despite requests. In other words, we as tenants have tried to behave responsibly and properly where the LL and Agency have not. We are not going through this exercise for their benefit. The idea is that this reflects badly on them whilst we have tried to do things correctly.

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