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What can I do whilst letting is unhabitable?

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I'll briefly explain the situation here and just wondering where I stand with it all really.


* Started 6 month AST in april 2012 and has now become a periodic tenancy

* Reported rat and damp problems at the end of last year

* Reported to environmental health as issues were not being dealt with

* Rat problems fixed and damp report done and sent to landlord

* Environmental health chased again as damp problem was not being dealt with

* Letting agent has come back to me this week saying to fix the damp I will need to move out of the property for a month whilst they fix the issues, as the property will become unhabitable during that period.


I have no issues with being away from the property for a month (as i can move in with someone temporarily) but just trying to see if i can technically/legally claim for anything for this as it is not my fault the property is in a bad state and the repairs need doing.


Can i claim for moving/storage costs whilst work is going on? I will be able to leave some things in the property but not everything whilst work is being carried out

Can i claim for say water/gas/electic bills whilst not in the property?

Would they have to do another inventory once I move back in?

Can they insist I sign another tenancy agreement or should I be able to still continue using my periodic tenancy?


Any help or assistance with this would be much appreciated.





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What precisely have they agreed. Are they expecting you to pay rent and bills?


Step 1 is to read your contract to see whether it states what the landlord's obligations are should the property become uninhabitable.


Normally, the compensation should exactly match your losses. So for example, LL could put you up for a month in similar standard accommodation, and pay your moving expenses, but still expect to get his rent.


A lot of it is by negotiation, particularly in this case where you have little security of tenure - it could have been reasonably cheap for LL to give you the required two months' notice and done the work after you moved out.


Eg. I suggest that you ought to argue that you should not be liable for utility bills while you are away (they will shoot up if workers put dehumidifiers in). Take readings when you move out and move in.


When you move in you could ask for a new condition report. At the very least you could update the report and send it to LL/agent. You don't have to sign a new agreement - if a lot of your stuff is still in the house then that's a good indication that your existing tenancy is continuing. However, at any time LL/agent may wish you to sign one regardless of this work.

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