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To be bracing myself for landlord to try and take all our £1,200 deposit back

(106 Posts)
Helpmepleasenow48 Mon 08-Apr-19 08:03:51

We are now the proud FTB/owners of our first home. We were previously renting for 10 years and moved to our new home 2 weeks ago
Now the property we were renting was in a state needing decoration when we moved in. Things went wrong as soon as moved in - only minor things like drawers coming out and hinges going and a mirror frame fell apart when we moved it. The upstairs toilet seat broke but it was an an unusual shape so the landlord had to order a new one and even when it was replaced the hinges weren't and ended up going rusty. The garden bricks started falling apart from frost.
Then the bathroom floor got a hole and the oven stopped working and the boiler made s terrible noise.
We reported all these things to the landlord but only the oven was fixed. Over the years she put the rent up from £750 to £995. She never visited and even left her agreement with the rental agency so they all but collected the rent. Anyway about four years ago we knew we were going to come into some money and we communicated with the landlord that we might buy the property. Basically we had it valued but she wanted more than the value, we also had building work and damp proof costed - which would have cost at least £30k.
So we put in an offer on a property nearby in November and now own it. We did our best to clean the property - we gave her a month's notice, but we think she's peed off because we didn't give her more notice/offer her more for the property. When we told her the bathroom floor was broken she told us she expected us to mend it. She said she was renting and made minor improvemts to her home. We know she's on an interest only mortgage because all her mortgage statements were sent to the address. She paid £500 a month and her mortgage is actually more than our new one! She owes £220k and we have £200k mortgage. This I digress a bit but we are pretty sure this income hasn't been declared to HMRC as I set up a limited company and rang them last week to change address they wanted to know who owned the property. I told them we rented through a letting agent.
So now worried I may have dobbed landlord in and we won't get our deposit back.

LordWheresMyShoes Mon 08-Apr-19 08:08:06

Your deposit should be in a protected scheme and technically she shouldn't be able to.

Take after photos, and find any before photos you have, receipts etc and be prepared for the fight.

LordWheresMyShoes Mon 08-Apr-19 08:08:31

Also, stop opening other people's post, it's illegal!

ATowelAndAPotato Mon 08-Apr-19 08:08:36

Right, well her tax situation is not your problem. You answered the questions you err asked, you didn’t call them deliberately to dob her in.
Is your deposit in one of the protected schemes, it should be by law and if it isn’t you have a claim against her which you are pretty likely to win.
If it is in a scheme, then the scheme acts as mediator in the event of either party having a dispute over how much deposit is withheld. This usually seems to favour whoever has the most evidence, e.g. before and after photos, written evidence of raising issues, etc.

barrelohflaughs Mon 08-Apr-19 08:11:08

Were you provided with an inventory when you moved in?

Helpmepleasenow48 Mon 08-Apr-19 08:13:56

Yes we had an inventory - the only thing 'missing' was a cap on a downstairs radiator. But the leaving inventory was more thorough than the one made when we moved in as the cap was missing but wasn't noted on the first inventory.

Laiste Mon 08-Apr-19 08:14:06

This all comes down to:

Is your deposit held in a protection scheme?

If so any deductions she wants to make need to be costed (to an extent) and can be disputed by you.

Anyone renting needs to brace themselves for attempts to retain the deposit.

We've privately rented twice in the past. Both times for 5 years. Both times on good terms with the landlord (happily chatting via email and face to face on inspections), both properties looked after beautifully by us. Both times in the end they tried to fleece us for our deposit hmm

Both times the deposit was in a scheme. So both times they failed grin

Witchtower Mon 08-Apr-19 08:14:54

As a PP said it will be protected.
But the bathroom floor is a bit of a shady area, why is it broken? She may be able to keep your deposit to repair the whole bathroom floor.

palebluewalls Mon 08-Apr-19 08:16:02

Been having a good looks through other peoples private mail haven't you OP 🙄

Helpmepleasenow48 Mon 08-Apr-19 08:18:24

Before we rented the last place we rented for two years from a lovely landlady. She was professional and gave us our deposit back.
This wasn't really so professional and I think she going to try and bill us for everything. We had a swing in the garden which we put in as the garden was quite literally falling apart.
We have photos and emails.

Annonymiss123 Mon 08-Apr-19 08:18:30

We know she's on an interest only mortgage because all her mortgage statements were sent to the address. She paid £500 a month and her mortgage is actually more than our new one! She owes £220k and we have £200k mortgage

Do you know this because you were opening her post? shock

barrelohflaughs Mon 08-Apr-19 08:18:40

Who is the deposit registered with? I'd imagine the TDS if she's using a letting agent.

The things you have mentioned in your OP sound like fair wear and tear to me; especially since you have lived there for 10 years! I very much doubt she will be able to retain anything from your deposit.

notapizzaeater Mon 08-Apr-19 08:20:20

Most houses need some sort of repairs in 10 years, hopefully she sees sense and returns it all. Did you take lots of photos?

screamifyouwant Mon 08-Apr-19 08:22:59

Stop opening other peoples post and her financial situation is none of your business.
What's the issue your worried you won't get your deposit back ? How do you know have you asked when you will get it?
It's my understanding that deposits are put in some sort of secure bond with the agency . Unless you breach your terms of residency you'll get it back . Repairs are wear & tear so should have nothing to do with your deposit.

Helpmepleasenow48 Mon 08-Apr-19 08:23:37

Bathroom floor was reported to her five years ago. It was peeling away from the shower cubicle when we moved in and the hole got bigger and bigger.
DH (who has a lot of integrity) opened the mortgage statement letter by mistake - he saw the logo on the envelope and it the same company he uses for some his business stuff. Yes we did look at it because she had just pushed our rent from £750 to £995.
It meant we were able to push back on the increase for a few months - as I had just had DC2 as an self employed as was on maternity leave.
I wasn't proud of the fact tbh

Laiste Mon 08-Apr-19 08:25:15

So is the deposit in a scheme?

Helpmepleasenow48 Mon 08-Apr-19 08:26:18

We told her we had seen it and she told us she was renting in an expensive area and her rent was more than the rent we paid her so she couldn't afford to do big repairs. She said she was very much an accidental landlord.
We were in okay terms with her - for someone who didn't fix things and left us with a noisy boiler for three years!

Helpmepleasenow48 Mon 08-Apr-19 08:26:38

Just checked deposit is in a scheme!

Helpmepleasenow48 Mon 08-Apr-19 08:27:21

scream she made it our business - see my post!

NW2SW Mon 08-Apr-19 08:27:56

Pretty sure there's a time limit to returning deposits in a scheme. If LL fucks you about too long then they can owe moe than the deposit.

Babygrey7 Mon 08-Apr-19 08:30:04

Sorry but the one who sounds dodgy here is you!

Laiste Mon 08-Apr-19 08:31:33

Yes if it's one like ours they have to declare how much they want to retain, itemise it and say why. You then reply through the scheme and if it's contended you all have to wait for it to be looked at by one of the independent people on the scheme panel. If she's taking the piss they'll refuse the claim from the LL and you'll get an agreed (between you) amount.

BarrenFieldofFucks Mon 08-Apr-19 08:32:51

She didn't 'make it your business', your husband opened her personal mail and then you used her confidential financial information against her confused

mishgs Mon 08-Apr-19 08:33:13

We had to fight for our deposit back too!!! We did some online research for approximate prices for the repairs/work and miraculously the amount the landlord requested was reduced by about 50%

ScarletBitch Mon 08-Apr-19 08:35:13

So you opened her mail?

palebluewalls Mon 08-Apr-19 08:35:25

@BarrenFieldofFucks

Yes exactly that!

HundredMilesAnHour Mon 08-Apr-19 08:36:12

DH (who has a lot of integrity) opened the mortgage statement letter by mistake - he saw the logo on the envelope and it the same company he uses for some his business stuff. Yes we did look at it because she had just pushed our rent from £750 to £995.

Surely anyone with integrity would immediately stop reading when they realised their mistake. Not continue to read someone's private mail and then use it to make judgements about their financial situation - and then post some of the details on an internet forum!

smallereveryday Mon 08-Apr-19 08:37:37

There is also the the issue of 'fair wear and tear' . LLs cannot rent a property to you in 2009, replace a dodgy cooker and then expect to withhold your deposit due to their lack of ongoing maintenance. Obviously if you take a six month let and the brand knew carpets need replacing- that's quite a different scenario. It's about what is reasonable over that period.

I wouldn't be having any truck with 'poor little me - my rent is more expensive, I'm an accidental Landlord ' (subtext is - don't expect me to stick to the standards required because I don't really want to be one) - it's bollocks. She can sell the house and put the money towards a house somewhere else. Certainly wouldn't feel sorry for her !
Can't afford to be a landlord with all the responsibilities AND the rent ? Don't be one .

If it comes to a fight OP - your length of tenancy works in your favour.

LostInShoebiz Mon 08-Apr-19 08:40:57

Sounds like you haven’t followed up with the agent to get repairs done. Had they been done then you would have prefect bricks, bathroom floor, etc. and there would be no question of the deposit being retained.

What is a swing in the garden to do with anything? Unless you take it with you, any incomers will likely not want it and it will go to landfill.

And no, the landlord at no time made her personal affairs “your business”. She is entirely entitled to put rent up for whatever reason she wishes, you are entitled to push back but that does not justify opening and then reading her private mail. Appalling.

You sound like an absolute nightmare, totally entitled. Lucky landlords that you’re now leaving the rental market.

smallereveryday Mon 08-Apr-19 08:42:51

Fgs the sanctimonious brigade are up early today.

So she read her mortgage statement . Shouldn't have had them sent there then . ! However the thread wasn't about that - but as usual, if you lot don't have anything useful to say - then you look for any aspect of an situation in which to have a pop at the poster ! It's all very pathetic .
Can she change anything about opening the post. ? No
Can she take it back ? No
Does your high horse attitude assist in ANY way ? No.
Then get over yourselves and get back to chewing wasps for breakfast.

Laiste Mon 08-Apr-19 08:44:16

One of our contended issues was over the downstairs loo floor. This is a bit rambling:

We were on chatting term with the LL anyway, but after the first 18 months or so we emailed him to say that the pale cream lino in the downstairs loo was becoming discoloured around the base of the loo. Spreading an inch or so out from it. We concluded that it was condensation gathering on the china loo cistern during colder months and dripping off and slowly getting in under the edge of the lino round the loo and darkening it. We invited him to come and see what he thought. The handy man who LL sent round occasionally for other stuff agreed with us about the cause. LL never bothered to address the issue. We tried to re-seal the base of the loo.

At the 3 year mark we told him that despite laying a clean hand towel to catch any drips the dark stain was getting unsightly (now spreading out about 10 inches from the base) and that we would be covering it with a new layer of lino leaving the old one down. (Not ideal - but - not our house what else could we do?) Cost us about 50 quid. Looked much better and stayed looking good for 2 years when we decided to leave.

As we were leaving we accidentally scratched the new layer of lino we put down. His old lino was still in place remember. He tried to charge us £200 to repair the scratch!!

He didn't get any money for it in the end.

lyralalala Mon 08-Apr-19 08:45:47

Make a list of all the issues and all of the dates that you reported them and followed up on them.

Don’t wait for her to dispute the deposit, have it ready so that if she does you can reply straight back with all the dates.

Also regarding the post it’s only illegal to open someone else’s post deliberately to deprive them of it

”A person commits an offence if, intending to act to a person’s detriment and without reasonable excuse, he opens a postal packet which he knows or reasonably suspects has been incorrectly delivered to him.”

A bank statement from your bank isn’t an unusual thing to open.

A LL’s buy to let mortgage statement shouldn’t be going to the tenants address so I’d bet as well as not declaring to the tax people she has a residential mortgage. No sympathy here - LL’s like that give LL’s a bad name

butteryellow Mon 08-Apr-19 08:47:25

after 10 years, loads of that stuff is out of its expected life time, so you would owe nothing (carpets, paintwork for example) - your landlord is not entitled to new for old - just for the percentage of wear expected to be left - so if a carpet should last 20 years, and it was brand new when you moved in, and you've ruined it, then you'd owe 50% of the replacement cost (note that 20 years for a carpet depends on where that carpet is, and the original quality of the carpet - cheap stuff would not be expected to last that long)

Also, if your inventory doesn't note the condition of things, your landlord can't claim anything about it - ie. they can't prove it was brand new if it doesn't say so on the inventory.

In any case, my advice here, as ever is 1) don't make any offers - the TDS will likely just take your offer if it seems fair 2) contest everything, with all your evidence.

I've been on both sides of the TDS, and they've been very fair in my experience.

Witchtower Mon 08-Apr-19 08:47:56

I guess it really depends on whose dealing with the case. My neighbours just lost £200 for mould in the bathroom. They were amazing tenants. I know landlord so this was confirmed.
But as others have said you have had a long lease and have complained about repairs so you may be lucky.

Thehop Mon 08-Apr-19 08:48:05

Is the deposit held in a scheme?

Vertigoo Mon 08-Apr-19 08:48:21

As we were leaving we accidentally scratched the new layer of lino we put down.

“Accidentally” eh?! grin

butteryellow Mon 08-Apr-19 08:48:49

Oh, and did you have gas safety certificates each year for that boiler? I'm guessing not if it was also never serviced/had the noise sorted.

That's very illegal.

And yes, if her statements were going to your house, that was likely a residential mortgage, so another contract she's broken.

buzzbobbly Mon 08-Apr-19 08:49:55

In true AIBU fashion, PP are getting very wound up about the mail issue. It got opened, big deal. They weren't trying to defraud her or do anything criminal (which is the illegal part, not the simple act of opening the envelope hmm )

Landlord shouldn't have her mortgage mail sent to her tenant's address. if it was all above board, she'd have told mortgage co she was living elsewhere anyway.

OP - If deposit is protected, ll needs justifiable cause to deduct from it. If you have evidence of condition before and after moving out, and it's genuinely no more than wear or tear - or problems the ll refused to put right, I'd say you were on pretty safe ground. It might behove you to formalise all the issues you requested fixing in a letter and push the onus on her to deny etc.

BarrenFieldofFucks Mon 08-Apr-19 08:53:14

I wouldn't be massively uptight about it, bar the fact the OP says they then used that information to stop a rent increase. That's the point it gets a bit dodge for me.

Helpmepleasenow48 Mon 08-Apr-19 08:53:23

All those having a go at me for being a nightmare tenant! We paid our rent on time and early most of the time. We had visits from debt collectors from Barclaycard, HSBC and Next - whom she all owed money. Coming to our door when I had small children to look after... we even spent hundreds trying to fix the garden...

GETTINGLIKEMYMOTHER Mon 08-Apr-19 08:53:49

It's easy enough to open a letter by mistake, especially when it looks like one you'd receive yourself, so I wouldn't feel too bad about that. The LL should not in any case be having her personal mail delivered to a property she's renting out - it should have been redirected, and she should have informed banks etc. of her new address. The fact that she hasn't makes me think she hadn't informed her mortgage provider that she was renting the property out. If they found out, she could be in a heap of trouble.

If she didn't register the deposit with one of the official schemes, and give you a copy of the certificate within a month, you could legally claim back 3 months' rent - she wouldn't have a leg to stand on.

To be frank, she sounds like a bad, greedy LL and as a LL myself I have no sympathy for such people.

mydogisthebest Mon 08-Apr-19 08:56:23

I know you are not meant to open another person's post but why was the landlord still having post sent to a rented house after 10 years?

My ex-landlord also had post coming to the house we rented (we rented for 14 years and it had been rented out for at least 4 years prior to us moving in). All his mortgage statements came to the address.

We told the landlord his post was coming to the house but he did nothing. I would sometimes just tear them up and throw them away.

When we moved out (not on good terms) I reported him to his mortgage lender (for not declaring he was renting) and to HMRC.

We didn't get our deposit back. It was not in a scheme and we could not be bothered to fight for it just relieved to get out. He did not spend a penny on the house in 14 years

Laiste Mon 08-Apr-19 08:56:34

Vertigoo grin

Genuinely.

At that point the LL hadn't revealed his full wankeryness so we had no reason to be horrible.
(we were forgiving of the fact that for 5 years he hadn't bothered with the lino stain, the mould from the rising damp due to a long term damp course breach, or the broken fence at the bottom of the garden)

Vertigoo Mon 08-Apr-19 09:03:02

@Laiste

Been there, done that so you have my full sympathies. In my case the LL actually tried to withhold the deposit due to the garden being unkempt. Erm, what garden? Oh right, he meant the communal one that was shared by 6 other flats. hmm

Vertigoo Mon 08-Apr-19 09:05:35

OP, to be fair though, if the rent went up and you agreed to pay then that’s not really a sufficient argument with regards to the deposit.

As a PP pointed out, when the rent increased, you had the option of negotiating or moving out.

Navy123 Mon 08-Apr-19 09:09:40

Just log in to the scheme and claim the full amount back - if ll wants to make deductions then they do it through there and you disputed it.

Then move on and enjoy your new home!'

cakecakecheese Mon 08-Apr-19 09:15:26

If you don't receive your deposit back you can claim via the website www.tenancydepositscheme.com/

Foxmuffin Mon 08-Apr-19 09:21:34

The deposit scheme are pretty fair. The landlord can’t recover more than your deposit so I don’t see you’ve got anything to worry about.
HMRC aren’t going to be able to join all the dots up on the phone, I can’t see they’d make the link and start investigating based on your conversation.
Can’t believe you’ve been snooping through your landlords post. It’s totally irrelevant to you. BTL mortgages are more expensive than residential anyway, regardless of whether she has a good deal or not.

lyralalala Mon 08-Apr-19 09:23:08

I wouldn't be massively uptight about it, bar the fact the OP says they then used that information to stop a rent increase. That's the point it gets a bit dodge for me.

If the LL has a residential mortgage and no permission to let from their provide, which it sounds like given the statements, then the OP had none of the protections she was paying for as a tenant so I wouldn’t be too upset for the LL.

If the LL had defaulted on that mortgage the OP could have been evicted with no notice, whereas in a proper situation with permission the lender has to go through the proper channels to remove a tenant. LLs like that out tenants in very precarious positions.

RhubarbTea Mon 08-Apr-19 09:49:30

Deposit is protected so you can stop worrying. Fair wear and tear. Even if the LL gets arsey, it all goes through the deposit protection scheme and you can contest stuff, negotiate amounts taken off deposit if there is some dispute. You should be very well protected so don't worry. I have never had any of my deposit taken and I've been renting around 10 years. If you're a good tenant and have reported faults as they arose you are good.

frumpety Mon 08-Apr-19 09:59:54

Why would the bank be sending her mortgage statements to the house you are renting ? I wonder if they actually know that she is renting it out ?

SchnitzelVonKrumm Mon 08-Apr-19 10:13:47

We rented a house for three years, very good relationship with landlords. They tried to fleece us for our entire deposit and more, claiming damage, that the whole house would need redecorating etc (it hadn't been updated for years). TDC adjudicator charged us £150 quid for some blu-tac marks and an overgrown hedge and gave us the other three grand back. We found out later they'd done the same thing to the tenants before and after us.

Mummyoflittledragon Mon 08-Apr-19 10:14:57

Lostinshoebiz
I seriously hope you aren’t a ll with this attitude. Op did the responsible thing by reporting the issues in the first place. It is not her responsibility to chase them up. Of course chase up for example the house is getting flooded or faulty electrics as the email may have got lost. They occasionally do. But in this case these are emergency situations and should be rectified immediately and best dealt with by a follow up phone call. Decent lls regularly inspect properties and get issues fixed. This ll did nothing for 10 years.

Helpme
Congratulations on getting your new home. It’s a shame she didn’t want to sell at market rate. That makes her less of an “accidental ll” more of a cf. I am a ll. A property, which hasn’t been touched for 10 years - and more for the decor - will probably need a lot of work. Your former ll won’t be able to get any money for flooring damaged through use. She’d struggle to get anything very much at all even if you deliberately damaged it. The rest also sounds like fwat.

People think renting out properties is great and you make big profits. You actually don’t if done responsibly as there are plenty of on costs. It’s more of an alternative to owning shares, which also if decent will increase over time. Yes she is only paying a few hundred quid a month. However she needed to use a good chunk that profit to save up and spend on the house. Doesn’t sound like she did that.

I really couldn’t give a fuck about how much her rent is in the area she’s living now. That’s totally irrelevant. Therefore I don’t think you should have used the amount she is paying in mortgage interest as leverage. Rather the state of the house. That is a massive hike. With long term tenants I keep rents well below market rent to reflect the fact the house isn’t up to decorative scratch (also redecorate if very long term). If she was forcing you to pay the market rent for a place in a decent state she was ripping you off. By the sound of it it probably should have been at least £100 less than a house in a good state.

Request the full refund through the deposit scheme. She sounds very dodgy.

littledoll33 Mon 08-Apr-19 10:15:23

@smallereveryday

There is also the the issue of 'fair wear and tear.' LLs cannot rent a property to you in 2009, replace a dodgy cooker and then expect to withhold your deposit due to their lack of ongoing maintenance. Obviously if you take a six month let and the brand knew carpets need replacing- that's quite a different scenario. It's about what is reasonable over that period.

I wouldn't be having any truck with 'poor little me - my rent is more expensive, I'm an accidental Landlord ' (subtext is - don't expect me to stick to the standards required because I don't really want to be one) - it's bollocks. She can sell the house and put the money towards a house somewhere else. Certainly wouldn't feel sorry for her !

Can't afford to be a landlord with all the responsibilities AND the rent ? Don't be one.

This X 1000.

@Helpmenowplease48

You have every right to your deposit back OP, and if the LL hasn't declared the income (from the rent) and she gets in trouble for it, that's her problem not yours.

Hope the deposit is protected.

And can people stop perpetuating this myth that it's illegal to open someone else's mail. It's utter bollocks.

Moreover, why is the LL still having mail SENT there if she no longer lives there?! The LL sounds dodgy as fuck. My cousin privately rented several years back, and her landlady had all her damn mail sent there, including stuff from student finance for her son, and tax and DWP letters; the works! God knows what SHE was up to!

Unfortunately, as with the OP (and my cousin and several others I know,) many landlords/landladies don't give a shit about the property, or what state it's in. They will just get anything done that they have to by law, but they don't care about anything else.

They don't give too hoots that it's a shabby, poorly-heated shithole that's riddled with damp, with curtain tracks, loo seats, and cupboard doors hanging off, windows and doors falling apart, holes in the walls, and dangerous wonky patios! Don't you DARE pay the rent a few days late though!!! hmm

outpinked Mon 08-Apr-19 10:22:18

A tip for anyone renting is to ensure you take detailed photographs on the day you move in and also on the day you move out. I luckily did this so when a former LL tried to withhold the deposit, he didn’t have a leg to stand on.

My former LL tried to keep the full deposit because we replaced a broken blind (and left the new blind there for him hmm), the living room carpet was stained (it was stained when we moved in- luckily photos proved this) and he claimed my DC had drawn on a bedroom wall which they hadn’t, ever. He was stupid enough not to protect the deposit so he had to pay it back after some heavy worded solicitors letters.

Provided you have sufficient evidence that you didn’t damage the property beyond general wear and tear, you will get the deposit back.

Helpmepleasenow48 Mon 08-Apr-19 10:33:17

Thanks for all the help and support here. Checked with Tenancy Deposit Scheme and the guy I spoke to said 10 years counts for a lot of wear and tear. We shall see.
We had loads of bills of hers coming to the house

NitroJenny Mon 08-Apr-19 10:50:47

Op, at the beginning of a tenancy the landlord should give the tenant details about the deposit, where it's held, how much it is etc. That applies now and 10 years ago.
The two deposit protection schemes I know of (TDS and DPS) both have websites where you can log on and check if your ll has started a dispute. If ll has started a dispute you can argue your case, if not you can just request your deposit back from the scheme and ll can dispute it.
Either way, the decision whether to pay you back your deposit in full or not rests with the scheme, not the landlady.
Best of luck!

Alsohuman Mon 08-Apr-19 11:01:50

I researched this for my son. Ten years is 100% for wear and tear for most things. It sounds as if it was furnished, in which case she’ll have been claiming for wear and tear against her tax bill - although I bet she hasn’t declared the income at all.

Dungeondragon15 Mon 08-Apr-19 11:43:15

If you have been there for 10 years and the landlord didn't replace anything while you were there I doubt but they could take anything off your deposit now. They would have to re decorate and put in new carpets now anyway. They can probably only claim for things that they wouldn't normally replace and have been damaged beyond wear and tear.

Helpmepleasenow48 Mon 08-Apr-19 12:33:10

Okay landlord's 'bill' came through. She was trying to charge us £560 including £120 for a dishwasher that didn't work when we moved in; we asked her and she told us to have it removed.
For taking our stuff out of the loft. No inventory was made of the loft and in fact it was a third full of all her stuff. I've replied with all this.
Also trying to charge us for cracks to the glass windows (which happened when next door neighbour extended their property - the extension involved building over 'our' roof and took 2 years. Landlord only complained afterwards and she didn't object or reply when neighbours told her they were doing the work.
Out of the £1,192.50 I've conceded £100 towards cleaning costs...
Waiting to hear what she does now

Alsohuman Mon 08-Apr-19 12:42:19

Take it to TDC, you’ll get all your money back. She’s a chancer.

Mummyoflittledragon Mon 08-Apr-19 12:44:47

What does she say needs cleaning? Does the inventory of 10 years ago talk about the cleanliness of the property? It may well not and if there are no details tough shit on her. Don’t concede if you don’t have to. For example after 10 years I don’t think you should be paying to clean carpets.

TomorrowsDiet Mon 08-Apr-19 13:19:58

I’ve just taken our old landlord through a Tenancy Deposit Scheme claim. Very straightforward process and didn’t cost me anything. We got back nearly all of our deposit. Good luck!

Sitdownstandup Mon 08-Apr-19 13:26:05

She's blatantly not told the bank she's no longer living in the property or declared the income to HMRC. I'd tell her my price for not sharing either of those pieces of information would be a deduction free deposit returned to you, no questions asked.

Charley50 Mon 08-Apr-19 13:51:01

Only got half way through the OP, but she should give you all the deposit back, after 10 years that's all wear and tear. If she doesn't, challenge it and you'll win.

And big deal you opened her mail. As others have said your LL should have got her mail redirected. She hasn't done that so she doesn't need to tell the mortgage company. So she's no shining beacon of ethical light herself is she?

Dungeondragon15 Mon 08-Apr-19 13:55:33

She hasn't got a chance of keeping much of the deposit. If she doesn't agree to your offer of letting her keep a hundred for cleaning try getting all back through the tenant deposit scheme. It's really annoying when landlords try to do this. At least nowadays it is relatively simple to get the money back. I remember having to go through the Small Claims Court.

Dungeondragon15 Mon 08-Apr-19 13:59:55

I'm not sure what the fuss is about you opening her mail either. If someone is fraudulently getting mail delivered to your house in order to pretend they're living there it seems perfectly reasonable to open it to find out what is going on.

LoubyLou1234 Mon 08-Apr-19 14:41:31

Go through TDS. If she hasn't had
your boiler serviced/checked yearly she's also in the wrong....

strathmore Mon 08-Apr-19 14:47:50

Sounds like she didn't tell the mortgage company she was letting or convert to a BTL if the post came to the house.

Charley50 Mon 08-Apr-19 20:39:28

Oh I hadn't read your last update. I wouldn't even concede £100 for cleaning. Can you change you mind and just get it all back through the scheme?

lyralalala Mon 08-Apr-19 21:17:51

I wouldn’t have conceded anything. Your LL has shirked her responsibilities for 10 years. You owe her nothing.

Laiste Mon 08-Apr-19 21:41:04

Interested to see the outcome.

Our landlord tried to claim a similar figure from our deposit. 500 and something. All ludicrous stuff. Including that 200 for the bloomin scratched lino which we bought ourselves for 50 quid! We did concede a figure of £150 because my car had had an oil leak before we left and there were a few drip marks on the (massive) brick paved drive. Didn't mind that. Oil's hell to shift.

AyoadesChinDimple Mon 08-Apr-19 21:57:42

Our landlord tried to keep our whole almost £1000 deposit. He redecorated the whole house and also tried to claim for other things which were all classed as fair wear and tear by the deposit scheme adjudicator.
He was awarded £15.

Helpmepleasenow48 Tue 09-Apr-19 08:58:27

ll is still trying to extract money for the cracked windows so I've said pay us £1k or I will start a dispute with TDS. Prepared to write off £168 which I now feel is more than fair. Given her the end of today and if she doesn't agree will start the dispute.

Alsohuman Tue 09-Apr-19 10:57:44

Start the dispute for the whole lot, you’ll get every penny.

NoSquirrels Tue 09-Apr-19 11:05:56

Just dispute it.

I have been both LL and tenant on both sides. She’s a mug if she lets you go to dispute. If you have an email trail of all issues and you’ve been tenants for 10 years she’ll get nothing (as it should be).

CapeDaisy5 Tue 09-Apr-19 11:06:21

Our landlord took all of ours for non-payment of rent, even though they were the reason our housing benefit was stopped (because they failed to produce the evidence asked of them by the council). I kept asking the landlord for it, never got it. He moved us to another flat as he was redoing our old one - have us the evidence we needed for a new housing benefit claim and everything has been fine at new flat since.

Then got a letter saying he has taken our £1k deposit from the previous flat for the rent. But he was very SLY about it - didn't tell DPS that we had moved address, that HE had moved us to another one of his properties. DPS sent the letter about us being able to challenge the decision etc to out old address. By the time we heard about it all our deposit was gone and the time limit for challenging it had gone. That was undoubtedly the landlords plan.

CapeDaisy5 Tue 09-Apr-19 11:08:08

I kept saying "the money is waiting to be paid for you you just need to show xyz" no luck, but perfectly willing to provide it for the new property when he moved us. Really fucked me off that one.

tenbob Tue 09-Apr-19 11:35:24

OP, I think HMRC and the deposit protection schemes now cross reference data with each other, so HMRC can find landlords who aren't declaring their rental income, so she might already have been found out

Or if she hasn't been and you shop her, she may think it was the deposit scheme rather than you

Agree with others that 'accidental' crappy landlords give reputable ones a bad name, as well as dodging tax

BlessedFox Tue 09-Apr-19 12:32:43

For taking our stuff out of the loft. No inventory was made of the loft and in fact it was a third full of all her stuff. I've replied with all this.

Eh?! She’s charging you for taking your things out of the loft? confused

Foxmuffin Tue 09-Apr-19 13:18:29

I would not be charging a tenant for cleaning after ten years! You expect to have to clean a property after ten years. After that length of time you’d be decorating and putting new carpets in. Nevermind a clean.

Charley50 Tue 09-Apr-19 13:45:55

Stand your ground OP. Don't let her take anything. And am I correct in thinking she didn't do an annual gas check?

Alsohuman Tue 09-Apr-19 14:30:52

Letting agents now have to tell HMRC about all the landlords they collect rent for too. Tax free rental income is hard to hide now, I imagine a lot of people are going to get a shock.

Dungeondragon15 Tue 09-Apr-19 16:41:31

If the rental income is used to pay the mortgage the landlord doesn't necessarily owe anything to the HMRC though.

Foxmuffin Tue 09-Apr-19 17:06:54

That’s not true re rental income and mortgage payments. In any event, just because there isn’t any tax due doesn’t mean the income doesn’t need to be declared.

Alsohuman Tue 09-Apr-19 17:09:01

That isn’t true. There’s no longer tax relief on mortgage interest. The whole of the income is taxable.

Helpmepleasenow48 Tue 09-Apr-19 17:59:47

I've started a dispute with TDS and asking for full payment wish me luck

Mummyoflittledragon Tue 09-Apr-19 18:14:51

Good luck. You’ll be fine. I’m a ll as I said upthread. She’s totally unprofessional. Shame on her expecting you to pay her this money. I hope you get the full amount.

NoSquirrels Tue 09-Apr-19 18:16:31

You don't need luck. You'll get your money back. It is very unusual for TDS to side with the LL if the LL does not have cast-iron proof e.g. receipts, photos, correspondence etc. If there is doubt, they may adjudicate for a lesser amount but you have tried to be reasonable so it's already weighted in your favout.

Your LL possibly does not realise this. Which makes her even shadier than she already sounds. Accidental landlord or not, once you're letting somewhere and taking money for it you are responsible by law for certain things and it's up to you to find this stuff out and comply with what you need to do.

Mummyoflittledragon Tue 09-Apr-19 18:17:22

Alsohuman
Yeh a family member never used to declare their income. Sold rentals never paid capital gain either. It really pissed me off when I always declared all of mine.

Alsohuman Tue 09-Apr-19 18:19:56

I’m looking forward to your post telling us you have £1200 in your account.

Helpmepleasenow48 Tue 09-Apr-19 18:28:10

I hope so but assuming the worst! Feel guilty - never like being confrontational but this feels like I am! Yuk!

RhubarbTea Wed 10-Apr-19 13:30:32

Gosh you're not being confrontational at all, you're just doing the right thing. As someone said upthread, she's a chancer.

Helpmepleasenow48 Wed 10-Apr-19 17:16:10

Okay she's still pushing us despite the dispute now starting and I've conceded a further £150 so £250 in total.

NoSquirrels Wed 10-Apr-19 17:40:35

Why are you conceding more now that you have started the dispute? Stop! Let the TDS sort it.

Alsohuman Wed 10-Apr-19 19:16:48

Stop conceding, ffs! Dispute the lot and get your money back. Honestly, OP, you’re far too nice for your own good!

Mummyoflittledragon Wed 10-Apr-19 19:20:52

Please stop conceding. Your ll is a snake. Again. I am a ll. I would never treat my tenants like this

Charley50 Wed 10-Apr-19 20:21:02

I don't understand why you are conceding anything. You don't owe her anything. 10 years anything that's dirty, lost or even damaged, is all reasonable wear and tear, especially as she did nothing to the property while you were there.!

Helpmepleasenow48 Thu 11-Apr-19 07:33:59

Okay - LL is going to pay us £920 of the £1,190.50 deposit we paid. I know it's not ideal, but it means we get the money back today. Also - we have worked out she's a mortgage prisoner, unable to get a normal deal.
So she can't sell and is being forced to rent out so she can keep renting where she lives, she doesn't want to move back to the house...
Thank you for all your support here, 99% of you have been kind and it has given me the emotional oomph I needed to get even back what we have. I do feel we could have cleaned the place a bit better...

RhubarbTea Thu 11-Apr-19 10:18:20

You lost £270 when you didn't need to, love. That's a shame. But glad you got the majority of it back. Next time, hold firm and don't concede ANYTHING.

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