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Thomas
Thomas, Lawyer
Category: UK Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 6263
Experience:  BA (Hons), PgDip, Practising Solicitor
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HI, I am a landlord, and it seems I have been ill advised.

Resolved Question:

HI,
I am a landlord, and it seems I have been ill advised. I understood that I could hold my tenants deposit in my own bank account and pay it over if there was a dispute. However I did not register the deposit( as I now find I should have done ) and the tenants want their deposit back.
I would happily refund the deposit but the situation is this. They were in the property from Feb 2009 and I gave them two months notice to vacate by 23rd July. In turn they vacated on 23rd June WITHOUT giving me one months notice. The tenancy agreement is a standard one which was for six months and monthly thereafter.

Where do I stand with this, should I refund the tenants and then sue them for one months unpaid rent or should I continue to withold the deposit and risk them taking me to court for what it seems can be three times the deposit sum?
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: UK Property Law
Expert:  Thomas replied 3 years ago.

Hi,

 

What was the fixed term of the agreement? and was it an assured shorthold tenancy agreement? Please state how many agreements there were (ie. one copy all signed by the tenants, or multiple copies individually signed) and what the annual rent was.

 

Tom

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi

Yes it was an assured shorthold tenancy agreement, provided from a solicitor ( i think they have a template that they use.Fixed term of six months and monthly thereafter

There was just one agreement between myself ( landlord ) and joint tenants, who were partners. I kept one signed copy and they kept the other.

Rent was £7200 per year ( £600 per month )

Expert:  Thomas replied 3 years ago.

Right.

 

All AST deposit must be lodged in a tenancy deposit scheme and I note you have not done this. This gives the tenants a right to apply for the return of the whole of the deposit amount and a fine of three times the deposit amount from you to them.

 

Putting the deposit in a scheme now is shutting the stable door after the horse has bolted and would not be convincing to a Court. I would advise giving them the whole of the deposit back and not pursuing them for the rent, to hope that they don't look in to their rights and issue at Court for the above.

 

If you dig your heels in about the rent then they are more likely to research or take legal advice on the deposit and issue.

 

Treat it as a learning experience and cross your fingers. The solicitor - if you spoke with him - really should have mentioned about TDSs, here is some information for the future:-

http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/TenancyDeposit/index.htm

 

Sorry it could not be better news.

 

If this is useful please kindly click accept so that I may be rewarded for my time. It will be gratefully received and you will be free to ask follow up questions.


Kind regards,


Tom

 

 

Thomas, Lawyer
Category: UK Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 6263
Experience: BA (Hons), PgDip, Practising Solicitor
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