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house rental bond money

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We have moved out of a rental property due to ill health,we lived in the property for 5 years,and in this time asked our landlady for nothing as her husband was ill with a heart problem.My wife asked if we could decorate and paint the bedroom in a pastal green to which she was told treat it as your own home.we rented it from a property agent to who due to the fact that i had no credit rating as such and as i had retired from work said i would have to pay a substantial ammount up front,and that she would ask the landlady if that would solve our problem,with a years bond of £650 pounds and a years rent of £550 a month plus agents fees a total of just over £8,000.Last week we moved into a new council home ,having spent many hours touching up paint marks and the like where pictures had been hung,and cleaning the carpets throughout the cottage.on thusday 9th april on an indipendant final inspection a copy of the report which we were handed read

1. both chimneys had been swept

2.letter box on outside wall left

3.sun room floor has colours coming through

4.damp on walls in sun room

5.Metal shed left in garden

6.a few marks on carpet in bedroom one which he said would be due to wear and tear over five years,i personaly cleaned the carpets with a new vax carpet cleaner.the colour which is on the coservatory floor has come through from what ever was laid underneath as per the report and over five years.On asking about our deposit we have now been told that the landlady now wants tradesmen in to decorate,and replace the viynal flooring in the lean-to and the agent will not release our deposit we left them a metal shed ,a metal letterbox,a bosch fridge,heavy curtains,nets,all new light pull cords,approx 500 litres of heating oil,a tank lock,four trees in large pots.we had told the land lady about damp in the pantry in the past her reply was that it was condensation and woodworm in the skirting boards,her reply was its ants.the cottage was rented to us with the description,that we had several outbuildings in fact there was only one,but the cottage is now up for rent again,with the same pictures as they were 5 years ago,and clearly in the pictures you can see the same carpets with the stains,and our landlady is claiming through her agent that they were new,and so they will not release our deposit,as they are going to have tradesmen in to quote for redecorating,we need advice,we are both in our seventies and dont know if we have any rights or who to turn to

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Did the landlady protect the deposit via tenancy deposit scheme, you can check if they did by checking the deposit schemes through the gov website just search tenancy deposit scheme on google it is a legal requirement from April 2007 that they have to protect it if not you can take them to court and get the deposit back and compensation, on the other hand If they did protect it you can place a sort of appeal through the scheme and they will decide if you can get it back.

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