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How unreasonable is it to not pay the last month's rent if you paid a deposit equal to the rent?

(122 Posts)
Rentergirl Thu 06-Dec-12 18:18:30

I used to be naive enough to think that the agent was a go-between. No not at all! There have been a few issues with things that broke, fell off, fell down, were bottom of the range etc.... I quickly got the message that the agent gets their commission from the client, and the client is the one who counts. So I felt bullied at times. eg, 'warned' by the agent that there wasn't much else out there that I could afford and that I shouldn't complain so much.

I have never been more than a day late with the rent. But when I go I won't pay the last month's rent. I will advise them by email that my deposit can be the last month's rent. I will leave the place clean and tidy because I'm not an arsehole.

I don't need a reference. I will put my hard hat on now and prepare to be blasted. Or not. ???

expatinscotland Thu 06-Dec-12 18:47:22

I used to work with students and they all did this after being scammed by landlords and agents. They just cleaned really well and had good videos of the condition of the place when they moved in, video logs of repairs not down and the shite condition of the property and video of the condition it was left in.

Don't blame them a bit. The whole private rental system through agencies is a giant scam to fleece tenants.

AfterEightMintyy Thu 06-Dec-12 18:47:34

Will you please answer the question about the rent deposit scheme? If you are in the UK and you paid the deposit only 26 months ago then it should be.

ChunkyPickle Thu 06-Dec-12 18:47:50

Your deposit should be in a deposit protection scheme. These schemes are very fair about wear and tear.

Do you have a full inventory prepared by an independent 3rd party? Because if you don't and they go to one of these schemes to try and retain some of the deposit then the protection scheme will laugh at them and give you all the deposit back.

Rentergirl Thu 06-Dec-12 18:48:28

but they'd have to give back the deposit when I left, so they're not out of pocket, so WHAT would they be pursuing through the small claims court? surely landlords would only do that if the property was actually damaged by the renter? although, my landlords are awful. I think they bought this at the top of the market and are trying to pass the expense on to the renter.

Rentergirl Thu 06-Dec-12 18:49:29

there wasnt an inventory so they could say anything. shit they could say there were televisions here. omg!

FredFredGeorge Thu 06-Dec-12 18:53:47

RenterGirl It costs nothing to resolve it neutrally, the deposit has to be protected (if it's not protected then it can cost you, but then you would normally get your costs and 3 times the deposit back in penalty).

FredFredGeorge Thu 06-Dec-12 18:54:23

RenterGirl Without an inventory, you'll get the full deposit back in almost any situation. Who is your deposit protected with?

FeistyLass Thu 06-Dec-12 18:55:19

You don't have to go to court to get it resolved if there is a dispute over returning the deposit. The tenant protection scheme includes a free mediation service.
You'll only run the risk of going to court if you don't pay the last month's rent. Then it's likely your landlord will pursue you through the small claims court.
I've never had a problem getting a deposit returned from a landlord so I don't understand why you think there'll be an issue confused

expatinscotland Thu 06-Dec-12 18:55:59

If she's been in the flat for longer than 26 months then it's likely the deposit isn't in the protection scheme.

ChunkyPickle Thu 06-Dec-12 18:56:11

But the last month's rent is due 1 month before your deposit is due to be returned (plus a week or so to actually get it out of the scheme)

No, they couldn't - it's in YOUR favour - an inventory has to be thorough (mine took over an hour and a half - and it was the second time she'd inventoried this house, so she only had to tick a lot of bits!) - your landlord has to prove that it was you that caused the damage, if they have no inventory, they can't do that, so the arbitration will go in your favour

CajaDeLaMemoria Thu 06-Dec-12 18:57:18

Renter -

If the deposit is in a scheme, they would have to send a copy of the first inventory (signed by you both) and the leaving inventory, and request £x amount for repairs. The scheme would then contact you and tell you what they'd done. You could accept, if it's reasonable, or refuse. If you refuse, you can either counter it with a lower amount, or tell the scheme that you didn't cause the damage.

I've used it four times, twice the landlord was....economical, with the truth, and both times I got my full deposit back without paying anything, or going anywhere near the small claims court.

If it isn't in a scheme, you've got bigger problems, but even then you should get your deposit back x4.

(You sound like you live in my old house. Cold, damp and horrible. I do feel for you, but what you are suggesting is not legal)

ISeeSmallPeople Thu 06-Dec-12 18:57:59

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

FredFredGeorge Thu 06-Dec-12 18:58:04

expatinscotland In England and Wales there is no exception unless you've been in a VERY long time (1998 or 2001 if I remember rightly and even then have a non normal lease)

Letting agents and lone LLs have both not paid back deposits to me on propertys they failed to maintain and I left in perfect condition.

Heating systems bodged repeatedly, ovens not replaced, showers not fixed. Yet when I moved out apparently they needed a cleaning company because there was food left in the fridge. There wasnt.

I have learned now. Take pics of everything and keep a diary of broken things that they fail to deal with.

If you do it OP, make sure you take extensive photos of every room. Inside the fridge, oven etc.

ISeeSmallPeople Thu 06-Dec-12 18:58:19

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MoomieAndFreddie Thu 06-Dec-12 19:01:39

YANBU but i bet most will say YABU

landlords / letting agents are piss takers and will do ALL they can to rip you off IME

Viviennemary Thu 06-Dec-12 19:02:31

Well you will be on a list of bad debtors I expect. Still some unscrupulous landlords do keep hold of the deposit even though they have no reason to.

ChunkyPickle Thu 06-Dec-12 19:02:44

FredFredGeorge - April 97 I think!

wannabe - you had flybynight landlords/agents who were breaking the law.

ISeeSmallPeople Thu 06-Dec-12 19:03:03

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Sunnywithachanceofshowers Thu 06-Dec-12 19:04:09


If you are concerned about shoddy treatment when you leave, contact Shelter for advice.

HisstletoeAndWhine Thu 06-Dec-12 19:05:57

Love, without an inventory, they can't prove a THING against you, they can't even prove the place was clean!

Tbh, the deposit can't be used as the rent, the money can't be released to the LL unless they can prove that they are out of pocket.

Basically without an inventory, You CAN'T lose! Don't sweat for a second about any of this.

Your only duty (morally) is to return the property in the condition in which you received it, and even then, the LL or their agent can't prove otherwise. Clean it to a good domestic standard, but that's it. Photograph it, before you leave, and leave it at that.

You have to pay the last month's rent, but you will get your deposit back, if they delay for a second, take the matter up with the deposit scheme.

HisstletoeAndWhine Thu 06-Dec-12 19:06:43

I'm an ex-Inventory clerk btw.

OwlLady Thu 06-Dec-12 19:09:53

yur deposit it with someone else the deposit protection service or something or other

i know it's annoying though, our rental house is falling to pieces, we do most the work and then they moan that we haven't cut the hedges back or similar confused

GoldQuintessenceAndMyhrr Thu 06-Dec-12 19:10:00

OP, I think you should post again in Legal.

I think you will get a lot of advice there regards to your rights in terms of your deposit.

You will get a county court injunction against you and bad credit rating if you go ahead with what you propose. The legal bods in Legal and Property (many of whom are landlords with good ethics) will advice you what you can do to ensure you DO get your deposit.

malinois Thu 06-Dec-12 19:10:57

I've never had a deposit back without threatening court action. No reason given for retaining the deposit, just constant procrastination or complete non-communication from landlords and agents - I think they just hope people will give up, especially students who might be moving back to their home country etc.

The last couple of times I rented, I did exactly as the OP plans to do.

However, the tenancy deposit protection scheme didn't exist at the time.

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