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Thomas
Thomas, Lawyer
Category: UK Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 6370
Experience:  BA (Hons), PgDip, Practising Solicitor
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I live with my partner and 9 year old daughter in Reading united

Resolved Question:

I live with my partner and 9 year old daughter in Reading united kingdom for a job we moved for from stoke on trent in January 2011. When we moved we did not know anyone and when we found our rented accomodation we thought everything would be okay. Initially the house was advertised for £100 less than the initial rent but when we said we wanted it the agency told us that it was a typo error and that if we do not want it they can get someone else. We took it and since then there has been wear and tear in the house which was not in that good a condition initially. Since we told the agency about the front door not closing because there was some wear and tear issue to it which they fixed they started saying they need to do an inspection. There is a hole in the kitchen directly below the bathroom because of faulty pipework and still leaks water to the kitchen, the manhole on the drive is in poor condition which the agency told us that the landlord will repair but has not been repaired yet. We recieved a letter today with a quote for wear and tear in the house 1. smoke damage from a faulty plug and a loose living room door £474, hallway walls going up the stairs are marked and need painting, Light fitting needs securing and shade needs reffiting £380. I came home one day after they told me less than 24hours before that they were coming for an inspection to find the light fiiting on the floor. I had told them that we will be at work and noone will be at home but they said that the person doing the inspevtion only works till 12pm so they came anyway without anyone being in the house.Repaint walls in back bedroom £175, the carpet in back bedroom 2 is marked-replace carpet £250. Bathroom panel behind the door is damaged replace and paint £150 that was already damaged but was sealed initially and painted over, The total for repair comes to £1450 if we do not do it ourselves. We can only leave this property in February 2013 and always pay rent on time, we are at a loss and cannot afford it.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: UK Property Law
Expert:  Thomas replied 2 years ago.
Hi,

Thanks for your question.

Have the agency/landlord asked you to carry out all the repairs? If so, why?

Are you asking how you can get all the disrepair mentioned by the landlord so that you don't have to pay...

Kind regards.

TOm

Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Yes the agency has asked us to carry out all the repairs by 7 August when they are coming for another inspection. On the letter they say that landlord is going to fix the hole in the ceiling in the kitchen which is getting bigger because of the water leaking and the manhole outside but have not been given a time frame for those rrepairs. Also two weeks ago thursday i did not go to work because i was not feeling well, i heard a knock on the door one time and the next thing someone from the agency was in the house to do an inspection which we were not told about as the previous letter arrived the friday before on the day that they had said they wanted to come. They said they sent another letter which has never arrived. They seem to just be coming as they please i feel violated
Expert:  Thomas replied 2 years ago.
Hi,

Were all of these items in disrepair when you moved in?

Did you cause any of the disrepair?

Kind regards.


Tom
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
yes but its marks on the wall and a small patch on the carpet which are things that we would obviously fix when we are moving out but do not understand why they want it done. They are not major issues compared to the ceiling and all which is a health and safety concern because it is getting worse and could fall through at anytime. they want to charge us £1450 our rent is £900 am month and we struggle with that already
Expert:  Thomas replied 2 years ago.


Hi

Thanks for your reply.

In respect of the matters for which you accept responsibility for I would rectify these yourself now simply as a show of good faith. The proper recourse for the seller in this regard is to either apply for an order for possession if they consider that this constitutes a breach of a term of your tenancy agreement OR to wait until the end of the term and then request a deduction is made from your deposit. However, if the matters for which you accept responsibility are minor then they absolutely no chance of getting an order for possession on this basis so you can relax in this regard.


If some other matters are simply cosmetic wear and teat (eg carpets, curtains etc) then you may not be able to enforce repaid of these. However, if other matters are disrepair of the structure and fabric of the building or of the installations supplying service (eg water) then you can certainly request that these are repaired).

You should formally write to the the landlord (copying in the agent) specifying the disrepair, making a list of the reasonable repair required and ask that he make those repairs within a reasonable time (eg. 14 days). State that if the landlord does not make the repair within that time you will pay to have the repairs made and will seek to claim the expense from him and are prepared to make an application to court if necessary.


If the landlord does not make the repair you can pay the most serious matters done that you can afford and then write formally to him requesting the payment of the cost, again within a reasonable time). If he does not pay you can issue a claim for the money yourself through Her Majesty Courts Service's online service: http://www.moneyclaim.gov.uk/. Write to them first asking for the money and stating that you will issue a claim if it is not received.

Its pretty cheap and straightforward to use.

Open a file, send letters by registered post, keep copies of everything for use in any claim you may choose to issue at a later date.

If you withhold rent to cover the cost of repairs then this is a good guide, but it is not usually recommended if the amount you are withholding is greater than two months rent because you may then entitle the landlord to issue you with an evictoi notice for rent arrears and find yourself defending an order for possession at Court.



Please remember to RATE my answer OK SERVICE, GOOD SERVICE OR EXCELLENT SERVICE or above if you are satisfied that you have received the correct legal advice (even if it is not the answer you wanted to hear), otherwise I do not receive any credit for answering your question.

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Kind regards,


Tom
Thomas, Lawyer
Category: UK Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 6370
Experience: BA (Hons), PgDip, Practising Solicitor
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