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Tenancy Contract Clarification Re Deposit Return

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Author Topic: Tenancy Contract Clarification Re Deposit Return  (Read 88 times)
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« on: September 11, 2020, 04:43:59 AM »

Hello all,

We moved out of our flat on the 20 July 2020. Received an Inventory Check Out report and were informed by letting agent that they would be in touch regarding deposit return (held by DPS).

We have since contacted the letting agent three times inquiring about the deposit and always received the same response- that they can do nothing until they hear from the landlord,

Today (10/09/20) we finally received an email from the letting agent detailing that the landlord would like to propose a professional cleaning charge of £265 deduced from the deposit. Bearing in mind that we did in fact pay for a professional cleaning service, but here is the main issue-

In our tenancy agreement it states:

ď6.7.1. The Landlord/Agent must tell the Tenant within 10 working days of the end of the Tenancy if they propose to make any deductions from the Deposit.
6.7.2. If there is no dispute the Landlord/Agent will keep or repay the Deposit, according to the agreed deductions and the conditions of the Agreement. Payment of the Deposit or any balance of it will be made within 10 working days of the Landlord and the Tenant agreeing the allocation of the Deposit.Ē

Does the landlord have any right to propose deductions at this stage? Itís strange that neither our letting agent nor our landlord seemed to take any notice of the above mentioned clause.

Any advice greatly appreciated, thank you.
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« Reply #1 on: September 11, 2020, 10:13:01 AM »

The clause would be valid... but overridden by whatever the Scheme says about it anyway... so double-check that first... the DPS publishes all their own timeframes.

The only potential get-out I can see here is something Covid-related... which shouldn't affect things like this, but has seemed to... and may be (attempted to be) used as an excuse. However, you are in a strong position. Have you gently made them aware of that clause in their own agreement and have they replied, or are you arming yourself? Why have you also waited such a long time yourselves? I would have been chasing this on the 11th day.
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« Reply #2 on: September 11, 2020, 11:34:34 AM »

I would respond quoting the clauses,also enclosing a copy of your receipt for the professional cleaning you had done.As this happened in July,I can't see that they could use any strict lockdown measures as an excuse,so unless the landlord was actually ill with the virus that would be nonsense.
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« Reply #3 on: September 11, 2020, 01:38:17 PM »

Thanks for the replies.

@Hippogriff- We are seeking information before contacting the estate agents/landlord. As mentioned, we did chase the deposit via emails and phone calls previously to no avail. In addition, we started the request for deposit return from DPS over two weeks ago and did not receive a response. The agents/landlord of course received an email when we initiated this via DPS.

I canít find where  the DPS scheme details a timeframe for proposed deductions to the deposit specifically- I will have to give them a call to clarify.

@Heavykarma- This is the route Iím inclined towards- I just donít want the agents/landlord to bat something back to me and try to muddy the waters.
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« Reply #4 on: September 11, 2020, 02:44:36 PM »

You could have already initiated the repayment process with the DPS (at least Custodial) yourself.

Also, maybe look at the DPS Single Claim Process? https://www.depositprotection.com/media/1396/dps_reclaiming_a_deposit_web.pdf - for when - "The tenant or landlord/letting agent contacts The DPS 14 days after the tenancy has ended and states that they would like to use the Single Claim Process as the tenant or landlord/letting agent is uncontactable or has failed to respond."

Their website is full of assets.
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« Reply #5 on: September 11, 2020, 02:46:20 PM »

Having a professional cleaning receipt doesn't mean the property was clean. We must be clear on that. All it means is that the outgoing Tenant expended some money on services... it certainly doesn't qualify the quality of those services. If the cleaning wasn't done adequately... demonstrably, somehow... then it was just money down the drain.
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« Reply #6 on: September 11, 2020, 03:03:48 PM »

If the tenant or the cleaners took photos as well surely that would back up the claim?
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« Reply #7 on: September 11, 2020, 03:56:23 PM »

Received an Inventory Check Out report and were informed by letting agent that they would be in touch regarding deposit return (held by DPS).

What did the Check Out report say about the cleanliness of the property?
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« Reply #8 on: September 11, 2020, 04:02:37 PM »

If the tenant or the cleaners took photos as well surely that would back up the claim?

Yes, surely... but did it happen?
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« Reply #9 on: September 22, 2020, 02:42:59 PM »

Having a professional cleaning receipt doesn't mean the property was clean. We must be clear on that. All it means is that the outgoing Tenant expended some money on services... it certainly doesn't qualify the quality of those services. If the cleaning wasn't done adequately... demonstrably, somehow... then it was just money down the drain.
Absolutely.  I see it all the time when a tenant finds a cleaner online promising a revisit if the job isn't done properly. Problem is once the tenancy is over the landlord or agent is under no obligation to allow the tenant or their cleaners back into the property.

Even if they do who is going to go back to the property to verify the clean has been done properly the 2nd time?
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« Reply #10 on: September 22, 2020, 02:43:41 PM »

If the tenant or the cleaners took photos as well surely that would back up the claim?

Photos do not tell the full story on an end of tenancy clean.
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