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End of Tenancy issues

(6 Posts)
MTBMummy Wed 21-Aug-13 14:56:38

Hi all,

I was hoping someone who know a bit more about tenancy laws could give me some advice on an issue I'm facing with my current landlord.

We're due to move out in October, gave him our 3 month notice as stipulated in the contract, so he arranged to have an estate agent come round and take some photos. The estate agent commented that she would recommend he redecorates the house as we've been here 5 years and it definitely wasn't done before we moved in.

We have caused no damaged to the property other than standard wear and tear - the carpets look a bit more worn, but otherwise given when we moved in the place hadn't even been cleaned, it looks better than the photos we took when we moved in.

There is some damage to one wall in the living room caused by our neighbors water tank bursting, and soaking the adjoining wall, Landlord was informed, and SOHO offered to repair it, but Landlord declined at the time, over the 2 years since it's happened the wall paper has lifted off the wall - although not fallen off - it's still attached, but you can see that it has lifted. Every annual renewal of our tenancy we have notified him of this and he's been fine with it.

So we got an email from him the tail end of last week stating that we can either pay for the property to be completely redecorated before we vacate, or he can do it and take the money from our deposit. We replied that we felt that (as I've already said) we've caused no damage, and any redecoration would leave the property in a better condition than we we moved in. He's coming back saying how about split the cost 50/50.

We've got photos from when we moved in (no check in/ inventory was done when we took possession, so I made sure we had evidence of the awful state of the place) so we can prove the wall paper in certain rooms was ripped, there was damp, stains on the carpets, scuffs or missing woodwork from doors and skirting boards.

Now one of the problems we have is that although we originally rented the house via an agency (the same one that came round), the landlord decided to rent it to us directly after the first year. Our deposit is held in one of those trust schemes, so it's not like our landlord has it.

I want to tell him (in the nicest possible way) to get stuffed, but DP is seriously considering splitting the costs, we're buying a new house so really a few hundred pounds will go a long way especially as I'll be off on maternity leave next year and I'm the sole wage earner.

Anyway - if you made it to the end of that - thank you, I was just wondering if anyone could offer any legal advice either on where we stand, or even what the definition of fair wear and tear

Thanks in advance

Madlizzy Wed 21-Aug-13 15:04:42

It's no problem whether you're dealing with an agency or with the landlord directly, unless it's stated in your tenancy agreement that you decorate every five years and you have already made good any repairs for damage that may have occurred whilst you lived there, then he can't take money from you. Fair wear and tear would be some scuffs on walls, wear on the carpet etc

We had problems with our last landlord making ridiculous claims to our deposit.
As long as its held within a protected scheme you will get every penny back, we disputed the landlords claims and so it had to be decided by the tenancy deposit scheme who took control of the deposit and both us and landlord completed a form and submitted all evidence.
It clearly says in all of their help and advise that if there is no check in inventory then they automatically find in favour of the tenants in full and won't consider any claims against the deposit as the condition of the property before you loved it can't be proved.
Definitely don't let him have any money! Tell him you dispute his claims and will need to deal with it through the tds if he disagrees.

Good luck!

Before you moved in, not loved it! Bloody autocorrect.

MTBMummy Wed 21-Aug-13 16:28:30

Thanks madlizzy and undertheboredwalk for taking the time to read and reply - I really appreciate it

Mad there's definitely no clause that states we have to redecorate, and we're actually a family of neat freaks, so every time we've moved furniture, we've lined the items with sheets and blankets so as to avoid any scuff marks, we've religiously cleaned the walls.

Under thanks very much for that tidbit - that's very helpful.

We've been royally screwed by one landlord previously - they withheld our entire 2 month deposit because the kitchen flooded (due to their own plumbing that they'd done themselves) and then claimed we were responsible for replacing the flooring and the cupboards tha were ruined. This was pre the deposit holding scheme, so short of an expensive and drawn out case of taking them to court we just had to walk away, and I'm not going to let that happen again.

specialsubject Sat 24-Aug-13 20:53:12

this is why the deposit scheme exists. Any disagreements are registered with the scheme and arbitrated.

you do NOT have to pay for complete redecoration, no chance. or indeed any!

find the deposit scheme, read up on the procedure and poise yourself to open a dispute.

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