Thanks for your quesiton.
The basic position is that you can write to the landlord specifying the disrepair (ie. th cockroaches) and asking for him to carry out the works to get rid of them within 14 days, state in the letter that if he does not do this then you will pay to carry out the works and then claim the money from him via the small claims court www.moneyclaim.gov.uk
You can terminate the tenancy agreement before the end of the term if the property is unfit for human habitation. You would have to have evidence of this that you could produce to Court if he sued you for the rent. Ideally, this would be in the form of a statement from the local authority's environmental control department - call them and ask that they attend the property to view the property, if they declare it as unfit for human habitation then get a written statement to this effect from them, they may serve an enforcement notice upon the landlord and you would be able to use this to safely terminate the tenancy before the end of the fixed term
If you do not have this then you can attempt to terminate based on other evidence - eg. photos witnesses etc - but you would be accepting an element of risk that a Court would not accept that this evidence proves uninhabitability then you will be liable for the remaining rent under the tenancy agreement.
Sorry it could not be better news. Get the enviro officer round as soon as possible.
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