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Landlord Help

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Author Topic: Landlord Help  (Read 180 times)
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« on: May 11, 2021, 08:40:10 PM »

Hi

Please help!

I need some advice, but I have just moved out of a property and the landlord is withholding my deposit.

We lived in the property for 3 years with no issues up until now, happy house inspections etc. My landlord served me a section 21 notice (which I now realise wasnt valid) as he wanted to move back into my property.

He is now refusing to return my bond as says there is 2000 worth of damage to the house which is completely unfathomable, we looked after the house, redecorated downstairs and hallway and stairs, with his permission.

He is now saying that he needs to redecorate the whole house, and replace carpets (1 carpet had an issue with carpet moths eating away at a carpet underneath a chest of drawers, we didnt realise this, until we actually moved the drawers to move and told them immediately) but he is now saying all the house needs fumigating, that carpet needs replacing and the kids bedrooms need fully redecorating.

He hasnt taken into account the fact of wear and tear, or the fact the bedroom carpets were at least 5 yrs old, and the other bedroom and living room, stairs etc where put in in 1992.

We cleaned the house from top to bottom and left it in a lovely condition.

Now my issue is he never protected my bond, I asked him to twice at beginning of tenancy, and he said he would, but I never got confirmation, and I have checked all 3 schemes, and the bond was never entered into a scheme from what I can find, so I now have nowhere to go with this to dispute it, except down the small claims court route.

I have contacted him and only after I contacted him, did he tell me that he isnt returning a penny to me and he is being fair in doing so and not asking us for more money!!

I have explained as I have nowhere to dispute this and as he isnt being reasonable, in at least returning half of my bond, I will have to go down the small claims court avenue if he hasnt returned my bond in 10 days.

He has said to go down that route no problem at all, but he will do a counter-claim against me for damages.

I feel like he is completely trying to intimidate me, and I dont know where to turn. I will be calling the CAB.

Can he do a counter-claim if he hasnt protected my bond? I have taken photos of the property after leaving, and the photos show the good condition it was left in .

He is a private landlord, so no agency to go through either and I need some advice as I dont know where to turn.

Thanks for reading x
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« Reply #1 on: May 11, 2021, 09:38:07 PM »

You start something, at least...

As it stands you have lost.

So you must start something... I'd suggest starting with a more formal Letter Before Action. Try the template files available here... https://england.shelter.org.uk/housing_advice/downloads_and_tools/template_letters ...then follow the process. You lived there for three years, was it one single tenancy or were there renewals each year?

What was the value of the Deposit?

Sounds like your bluff is being called. The Landlord has possibly done it before... make sure the Landlord doesn't do it again. Come here for advice, people here will see you straight.
Newbie
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« Reply #2 on: May 11, 2021, 09:58:01 PM »

It's a nightmare!

No we was told it was a rolling contract so actually only signed something the once, I vaguely remember him asking me to sign something after the first 6montha,but he never actually brought anything and said he would just change the dates on the first one?

the deposit was 700.

Thank you, I will do that and send it,however I dont think I will have any luck, as seems to think he is completely in the right. x

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« Reply #3 on: May 12, 2021, 10:14:35 AM »

It doesn't matter what he thinks.Follow the advice from the CAB.He will have to pay you at least 1x the deposit, possibly 3x. He may think he is being clever,but he is actually a very stupid man.
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« Reply #4 on: May 12, 2021, 11:52:59 AM »

Thank you, I will do that and send it,however I dont think I will have any luck, as seems to think he is completely in the right. x

It's your starting point.

If you think there is more than a single tenancy, the penalty for non-protection rises in-line with that number, regardless of whether a new Deposit changed hands.

The onus of proof is not on your demonstrating that your Landlord didn't protect the Deposit, the burden of proof is on the Landlord demonstrating they did... which they didn't. So a penalty will be due (above and beyond the return of the Deposit being held), you just need to start down the path... at all stages of the process ensure your ex-Landlord understands you remain open to negotiation. But - at this stage - I don't think I'd be willing to accept the bare minimum you wanted... the Deposit (or some of it) returning.

Deposit protection legislation is there so Landlords know this is not their money by default... it's not a perk of the job, that they get to take every Tenant's Deposit when a tenancy ends. It has been in place for over a decade now - there is no excuse for a Landlord not complying... other than they probably always intended to steal it from you.
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« Reply #5 on: May 12, 2021, 11:55:10 AM »

In your reply... consider stating that you have "taken advice"... it will add a bit of weight to the situation... and it's true... maybe your ex-Landlord will start to think a bit differently when realising it's not just you knocking at the door any more.

Failing everything you could even hand over the entire thing to a no-win-no-fee Solicitor... you pay nothing, but they will take a cut of anything they 'win' for you. What you really want is for your ex-Landlord to realise the sticky situation he is now in, and start to roll over... unless the things you have told us are entirely untrue then I cannot see how they would ever be confident of success.
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