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timetoshine

Debt to previous landlord - what to do? Please?

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Hi everyone,

 

I am hoping someone can advise me with some problems I am having with a previous landlord.

 

As I have explained in other threads I have in this forum I was diagnosed with bipolar affective disorder in August this year.

 

First of all, my employer, the NHS and my friends/family have been brilliant in helping me; however, as you can probably imagine I am currently living on a greatly reduced income. Essentially, on a monthly basis I do not have enough money to meet my expenses. In response to this, I have been able renegotiate with my creditors/utility providers (with the exception of NPower but that is another story lol).

 

My problem is that I am paying off a circa £500 debt to a previous landlord in outstanding rent and really do not view this as a priority debt. Because I have to prioritise council tax, rent to current landlord (which is fully in order) I can no longer afford to pay anything to my previous landlord. The payments I have made so far have been made direct to them but negotiated by a small time debt collector who is working on their behalf.

 

I am regularly reminded that they will take court action if I do not continue my payments; however, it is getting to the stage now where I am thinking that I should just let the matter go to court, accept the debt and let the judge order me to pay what I can afford - I firmly believe that this would be significantly less than what I am paying now. I know that I would get a CCJ but I am still very young and my credit is already blown to bits. I would certainly have time to recover financially. In the new year I will be starting a course that will very hopefully lead me back in to work but this wont happen for a while.

 

What does everyone think - should I just fold and let them take court action.

 

Please remember that this is not a case of wont pay it is simply a matter of can't pay (literally)

 

Thank you all,

 

timetoshine

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Take control, write to him by recorded delivery and tell him you can no longer afford the amount you are now paying and it will be reduced to £1 per week until such time as you can afford more.

Don't be afraid that he will take you to court, the court will ask why you are being brought in front of them when you are already making a payment. The most important thing to remember is to keep up the payments, don't have a breaks.

 

The first thing to do after Christmas is to get a Council Tax claim in, if you are only getting an amount barely enough to live on then you should claim all that you are entitled to.

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Thanks Conniff,

 

What I think I will do is make the £1 a week standing order arrangement today and write to the landlord to let them know the situation. By doing that, the new payments will start going through before they receive my letter.

 

Thanks for your advice, really is very much appreciated.

 

timetoshine

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If a repayment scehdule was drawn up by the debt collector and you agreed (by making subs payments at agreed amount), then paying less now, without further agreement, could render the remaining debt payable in full, on demand.

The ex LL may have 'factored' your debt ie sold it to debt collector.

I think you will get your opportunity to put your case to a Judge if you take the action you propose, and he will not be impressed that £500 at £1/wk will take 10yrs for you to pay it off. The lowest repayment I have heard being offered by a Judge was £5/wk, full amount due if only 1 payment is missed.

 

As Conniff says, first step is ensure you are getting all avail Benefits to raise your avail income, however slightly.

CAB can be helpful with debt management.

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Hi Mariner,

 

Thanks for your post.

 

The debt has not been sold to the debt collector as I still pay the ex landlord direct.

 

As I mentioned before, if the ex landlord wants to take me to court then so be it. I am very young, not long out of uni and have no assets. I have no bank accounts of any value worth seizing, I have no assets that would even probably pay 10% of the outstanding amount, I have earnings for an attachment of earnings order. Overall, there would be no real point in the landlord taking me to court but I guess that is up to them.

 

timetoshine

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If a repayment scehdule was drawn up by the debt collector and you agreed (by making subs payments at agreed amount), then paying less now, without further agreement, could render the remaining debt payable in full, on demand.

The ex LL may have 'factored' your debt ie sold it to debt collector.

I think you will get your opportunity to put your case to a Judge if you take the action you propose, and he will not be impressed that £500 at £1/wk will take 10yrs for you to pay it off. The lowest repayment I have heard being offered by a Judge was £5/wk, full amount due if only 1 payment is missed.

 

As Conniff says, first step is ensure you are getting all avail Benefits to raise your avail income, however slightly.

CAB can be helpful with debt management.

 

Judges frequently award £1 per week payments where claimant is on benefits, as benefits are the minimum amount required to live on. I've even known one to suspend any payments at all, with 'liberty to restore' when claimant is back in employment.


"Then they came for me--and there was no one left to speak for me". Martin Niemöller

 

"A vital ingredient of success is not knowing that what you're attempting can't be done. A person ignorant of the possibility of failure can be a half-brick in the path of the bicycle of history". - Terry Pratchett

 

If I've been helpful, please click my star. :oops:

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Hi LaughingGirl,

 

Thanks for your input - very much appreciated.

 

You make a good point because I do not intend to be on benefits for life, hopefully only another 3 - 6 months.

 

I have bipolar which is an interesting condition. In mania, I have achieved some of my greatest successes whereas in a depressive state life has been very difficult indeed.

 

Once stabilised I look forward to returning to some form of employment and will naturally be in a much better position to honor my debts (don't actually have that many). I am happy to pay my debts and when possible will always do so.

 

Thanks,

 

timetoshine

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Well, I really do wish you every luck with getting yourself stabilised. Once you're working, you'll clear the debt in no time at all. At the end of the day nobody can take what you don't have...it's that simple.


"Then they came for me--and there was no one left to speak for me". Martin Niemöller

 

"A vital ingredient of success is not knowing that what you're attempting can't be done. A person ignorant of the possibility of failure can be a half-brick in the path of the bicycle of history". - Terry Pratchett

 

If I've been helpful, please click my star. :oops:

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Hi all,

I would be very grateful to receive some advice on the following matter.

 

Last year my partner at the time and I rented a property together for a period of six months under an assured short-hold tenancy agreement. The property was let through a letting agent but was managed by the landlord. Shortly after moving in to the property I found out that my partner had been fooling around and this caused a pretty much immediate breakdown in the relationship.

 

I was completely devastated and returned to my family home for a while. As I am sure you can all understand I did not want to be alone in the property that I intended to share with the person I found out to be cheating on me. Consequently I wrongly used the money I should have used to pay rent on petrol so that I could commute to work. My intention was to return to the property and make good the arrears. One day I drove to the property and found that the lights were on and that people were walking around inside.Consequently I drove on as I felt very awkward.

 

The problem I now is that I am being chased for rent when I was not living in the property. I know that my tenancy agreement obligated me to pay rent for the whole duration of the tenancy; however, I was informed that the property was going to be re-marketed and that I needed to return my key to the letting agent that was marketing it.

 

This issue is that I am now being chased for outstanding rent on a property that I was not living in yet the landlord did not obtain any form of possession order nor did I sign any deed of surrender for the property. What I would like to know here is whether I have any rights here please.

 

Thank you all for your interest

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It is albeit from a different perspective so I didn't want to confuse the two if that makes sense....

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If those offering advice dont see the whole story, then they will not be able to advice properly !


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