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Did she occupy the premises under an assured shorthold tenancy?
Right, did you serve her with a notice prior to entering the property that the tenancy was NOT to be an AST??
Please also state the annual rent?
In the contract I stated that it would be 6 monthly renewable, so does this constitute an ast? the annual rent at £500 month is £6000.
Yes, it constitutes an AST. All tenancy agreements do unless you serve a notice specifically stating that it is not an AST or the rent is greater than £25, 000.00 pa.
Did you lodge the deposit with a tenancy deposit scheme?
Okay, you're in a difficult position.
All deposites in ASTs must be placed within 14 days of receiving them in a tenancy deposit scheme. If the depoist has not been placed the the tenant is entitled to apply to Court for the return of the whole of the deposit and a fine payable from you to the tenatn of three times the deposit amount. Courts are strict about this because until the protection came in there was a long history of deposit misuse by landlords.
I know it's unpalatable and unfair , but I would advise returning the deposit to the tenant saying that you "just cannot be bothered with the hassle" and hope the tenant does not reaslise their rights and sue you for the £2, 000.00.
If you could prove that the tenant did the damage then you could report her to police for criminal damage and possibly seek compensation but given that it would probably preciptate her taking legal advice I would not take the risk.
Better, in my opinion, to write this off as a learning experience. For future reference, there is information on tenancy deposit schmees here:-
I'm very sorry it could not be better news.
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