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Myself and my girlfriend are having trouble with our

Hi, myself and my girlfriend...
Hi, myself and my girlfriend are having trouble with our landlords who I would describe as 'Rogue Landlords'. My girlfriend has lived in the property for seven years and I moved in six years ago to be with my girlfriend. We rent through these people privately. A number of things have flagged up with our landlords who are married and have a number of properties. We didn`t really question some of the problems because in the beginning they both came across as nice people. It has only been since they tried to put a different clause in a new tenancy last August, that we started to worry. The clause that they put in was making the tenancy a full repair tenancy, meaning that we were responsible for everything, but didn`t stipulate what we were responsible for. This was clearly added by them and also included spelling mistakes. When we told them that we were not happy about this, they got very nasty and even threatened us by text message.
We have looked into the wonderful information on the internet and have discovered that they never secured my girlfriends deposit in one of the deposit schemes. We have pointed this out to them and they only did this last month. They have demanded cash throughout the tenancies without giving us a receipt for our payment of rent. The last three rental payments we have received a receipt as we have had to hand the money to a third party. We have asked them that we don`t want to pay cash because we want proof of rent paid. It has now got to the point where the communication has broken down completely between them. I put a cheque through their door for last month rent with a letter wishing them a merry Christmas, but was contacted by my bank because an unauthorised amendment was made to the cheque. I have received a copy of the cheque and can seen that my landlord has tried to change the name on the cheque without my authorisation. This means that they haven`t had last month's rent. I have texted informing them about this and asking how we can pay the rent so that we have proof of payment and also how we can pay next month`s which is due this Saturday?. I have had no reply to the message even though I know they have been at home. When we have sent text messages in the past, they have had no problem in replying.
I can`t understand why they`re not answering and don`t want to sort out their rent payment. We have the money to pay them and want to pay them the rent. We seem to think they`re doing it on purpose and sabotaged the cheque, so that they could make us look bad and have grounds to evict us. I just can`t understand why they don`t want us to transfer the money to their bank account?. We love living in the property, but the stress of all of this has really got to both of us. We don`t sleep very well at night, my girlfriend is afraid to walk her dogs (She`s a dog walker) around the village because our landlords live in the same village. This is affecting us on all levels. We want to find another property, but it is proving difficult in this area with our four little dogs. My girlfriend doesn`t drive, so we have to be central. We are so worried that they will evict us and that we will become homeless and lose or beloved dogs. We don`t have a lot of money and just would like someone to give us some good advice. I will appreciate any help.
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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
I have just realised that this is a US website. I live in the UK and understand that some laws might be different to the US.
Answered in 42 minutes by:
1/9/2018
Jamie-Law
Jamie-Law, Solicitor
Category: UK Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 7,089
Experience: Solicitor
Verified

Hello my name is ***** ***** I will help you with this.

The site is US, but I am a lawyer based in the UK.

What is it you want to achieve please?

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Hi Jamie, Thank you for your reply. I would like to know based on what our landlord have done, how protected are we? Is there anything else we can do to protect ourselves more? Do we need to report this to any authority, and if we do, who do we contact? Can the authorities step in to prosecute or is that something that we have to do if it came to that? We would really like find somewhere suitable to rent and would like our passage out to be amicable, but our landlords are making this so difficult. We want to continue to pay the rent. Can they try and evict us even if we are trying to pay the rent? Is it OK to not responding to our message? We just want to continue to live our life without being in fear of these people. Kind Regards, Jan

Have you taken any action re the deposit not being protected until late?
Have you reported anything to the Council?

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
No, haven't taken any action with the deposit not being protected. We are both good people and like to work things out with people. Is that something that we should do? We haven't reported anything to anyone as we didn't know who to contact. We are just worried about being evict because we feel they are trying to make it look like we are not paying rent. I just can't understand why they won't accept a bank transfer for the rent? I have the money in my account to pay them and even offered to pay next month's rent early. We have said going forward we want a proper record of rent being paid. Is that wrong to ask that? I'm a freelance tai chi/ fitness instructor, so very difficult for me to talk over the phone. So, I would be grateful to get the advice through here.

Ok - you can contact the Council re the problems with the property. They can come out, look at it and see whether it is an acceptable standard.

If not, then the Council can serve an improvement notice on the Landlord. If the Landlord does not comply with it, then the Council can take them to Court.

As for your deposit not being protected the law says you are entitled to claim for x3 that amount.

You need to write and set out your losses and request compensation x3 within 14 days or say you will go to Court within 14 days. You should make sure you send this signed delivery and keep a copy.

If they do not compensation you then you can issue proceedings in the County Court. You can either do this online at: www.moneyclaim.gov.uk or by completing form N1 http://s3-eu-west-1.amazonaws.com/hmctsformfinder/n1-eng.pdf and take it to your local County Court.

The Court will then issue a claim which a copy will be sent to the Defendant who will have a limited time to defend it, if not you can enter Judgment and enforce.

If the claim is for £10,000 or less it will be a small claim so you will not need legal representation. Over this value, you would need representation for trial.

Can I clarify anything for you about this today, please?

If not, I would appreciate a 5-star rating for my answer. If you need anything further I am available for a follow up at no extra cost.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
That's great advice about the deposit. The property is in good condition and we have no problems with the property itself, just the way the landlords are operating. The main problem we have is with everything that has happened we don't want to pay cash in an envelope without a receipt or proof of rent paid. Are we within our rights to ask for this? . It is not stipulated in the tenancy how the rent has to be paid. Also, if we are trying contacting them to pay the rent, with them ignoring us, does this give them the right to evict us from their property? Are we protected?

No, it does not give them right.

If you have evidence about contacting to pay rent, that is enough to protect you.

Does that assist?

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Thank you Jamie

All the best. If I could ask you to rate my answer before you go today, by clicking on the 5 stars or happy face at the top of the screen, otherwise the site does not pay me for the time spent with you today. It is also an important part of the online process. If you need anything further I am available for a follow up at no extra cost. Thank you in advance and good luck!

Jamie-Law
Jamie-Law, Solicitor
Category: UK Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 7,089
Experience: Solicitor
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