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I've had an anonymous text about my tenant

(151 Posts)
ChristinaRussell Sat 04-Jul-20 16:40:06

Some background as it gives weight to the claims in the text:
A young couple have been renting a house from me for nearly a year (it's my only rental property and I'm kind of an accidental landlady). A couple of weeks ago the woman contacted me wanting her partner's name taken off the lease as they had split up and she really didn't like his behaviour - drinking too much, being argumentative, not paying his share etc. The rent has always been paid (on time) from her account and she has a steady job. They're currently both still living there but he is going to move out and she will renew the lease solely under her name as she really likes the house and wants to stay.

Anyway, this afternoon I receive an unsigned text complaining about the man's behaviour - he was seen urinating against the wall of the house, and he and his friends were allegedly being very rowdy and unpleasant. I don't like receiving anonymous messages on my personal number so I challenged them as to who they were but they refuse to say, just that they 'think I should know what's going on'. My suspicion is that it's the NDNs who we've never really got on with; not sure how they'd have my number but it's possible I gave them it years ago when we first bought the house. That's a side issue though. Had I not had the conversation with the female tenant earlier I probably would have dismissed it, but it does all fit. I've asked her (female tenant) for her partner's phone number so that I can berate him directly, and she's sent it. And now I don't know what to write to him! It pisses me off that he's abusing my property in this way but then again he's leaving in a couple of months anyway. And as a landlady I can't police his verbal or moral behaviour, can I?
(By the way, I haven't completely disregarded the thought that it might be the FT texting me anonymously from another phone in the hope that I'll evict him before the lease is up. She was pretty quick to respond and give me his phone number).
Should I say/do something? And if so, what?

OP’s posts: |
MawnyStannit Sat 04-Jul-20 16:43:04

Nah, it’s her texting you.

anon5000 Sat 04-Jul-20 16:43:21

If he's moving out anyway I wouldn't do anything.

Fatted Sat 04-Jul-20 16:44:53

I would go back to your female tenant first off, because she has been the one to discuss him leaving with you. Has she given an indication of when he will be leaving?

If it is soon I would let it go. But if he is going to be there for a while, I would contact him to say that you've had complaints and the sooner he goes the better.

Yankathebear Sat 04-Jul-20 16:46:19

What would you want as an outcome?

anon5000 Sat 04-Jul-20 16:47:22

I wouldn't get involved in their arguments and it sounds like the FT is trying to involve you. Keep your eye on the situation.

MistyMinge2 Sat 04-Jul-20 16:50:26

I reckon it's the female tenant texting from a friend's phone. Too much of a coincidence otherwise. If they've been there a year and he's an antisocial asshole, then surely the neighbours would have contacted you before now.

I think I'd arrange a time to carry out a property inspection, and if alls well then I'd not get any further involved.

OscarWildesCat Sat 04-Jul-20 16:52:28

I’d leave it, it’s hearsay as it stands and he’s going anyway.

ChristinaRussell Sat 04-Jul-20 16:53:46

Fatted The tenancy is up at the end of September. They have agreed with each other to find new places to live individually - she hasn't told him she's staying on in the house.

If it is her texting me then I'm a bit stumped as to what I'm supposed to do about it. I can't evict someone for being lairy. I'm not thrilled about him pissing up the house wall but at least it's outside! I don't live nearby but I was in the area last weekend and popped in - the house seems fine and the FT is really sweet.

I'm sorry about the voting by the way, didn't mean to enable it!

OP’s posts: |
thecatneuterer Sat 04-Jul-20 16:54:46

Don't do anything. He's leaving anyway.

thecatneuterer Sat 04-Jul-20 16:58:37

And lol at anyone hoping he might be evicted before September. Even if you started the process now wouldn't stand a hope of getting an eviction within 6 months and probably, with current Covid backlogs, it would be nearer 10 months.

WhySoSexist Sat 04-Jul-20 17:00:52

I'd suspect it's her (the female tenant) texting you so she can get him removed from the lease without any issues. If it were the neighbours that you don't get on with then they'd have absolutely no reason to hide their identity. She's probably found out that she can't remove him without his consent and is worried he'll have a legal right to stay in the property.

ChristinaRussell Sat 04-Jul-20 17:01:21

The consensus seems to be to leave it, which is my inclination also. However, I am a terrible one for avoiding confrontation so I needed to check that wasn't what I was doing here.

When she first told me he was acting like a prat I gave her various options to do with changing/ending the lease so that he would leave earlier but she then decided that she could deal with it for a couple of months. She has my sympathy but I'm her landlady not her mum!

OP’s posts: |
WhySoSexist Sat 04-Jul-20 17:03:43

I'd be very cautious here as a landlord. If you haven't spoken to him then you can't just remove him from the lease because she's asked you to. You have a contract with him stating that he has a right to stay in the property, if you change that contract without his consent or notice then you could end up in a bit of hot water. If he wanted to be off the lease then he should have told you that, not her.

itswinetime Sat 04-Jul-20 17:05:50

My bet is he has mentioned seeing if he can stay on at the house so she is putting out reasons so you won't do that!

BumbleBeee69 Sat 04-Jul-20 17:09:36

How do you know it's true ? why do you trust the Text implicitly ? seems convenient that so soon after have the 'conversation' that such a thing would be sent.... perhaps the female tenant manipulating the situation by turning You in the bully landlord demanding he move out, making it easier for her to end her relationship.... call me suspicious hmm

Do nothing OP... September is almost upon us... flowers

Slippy78 Sat 04-Jul-20 17:09:49

Don't text anything, it's none of your business

ChicCroissant Sat 04-Jul-20 17:10:02

Don't respond to anonymous messages (I also think it's the tenant that wants to stay sending it). If it was your neighbours they would have said who they were and I think it's unlikely they'd complain about only one tenant.

ChristinaRussell Sat 04-Jul-20 17:10:12

@WhySoSexist The lease was for a year and it runs out at the end of September. I will give them both notice a month before and draw up a new lease with only her name on it. Do you know much about tenancies etc? I'd appreciate your advice on this if so. (I didn't go through an agent)

OP’s posts: |
ChristinaRussell Sat 04-Jul-20 17:11:47


Don't respond to anonymous messages (I also think it's the tenant that wants to stay sending it). If it was your neighbours they would have said who they were and I think it's unlikely they'd complain about only one tenant.

Honestly, the NDNs are a bit weird and have been very unpleasant to us in the past - an anonymous message is just their style!

OP’s posts: |
ladypete Sat 04-Jul-20 17:11:49

I’d bet money the text cane from her.

I would leave it as you know he is planning to move out anyway. You don’t even have proof that he was lairy/did piss on the wall.

It all seems like a weird ploy to ensure you remove him from the lease whilst she secretly renews it under her name.

Atadaddicted Sat 04-Jul-20 17:13:43

He’s off the agreement, correct?

In that case not your problem.

Suggest to this anonymous person they contact the police

AnnaBanana333 Sat 04-Jul-20 17:15:46

* I've asked her (female tenant) for her partner's phone number so that I can berate him directly*

As you just said, you aren't their mother. This is none of you business.

If urinating against the wall causes damage you can try to keep some of the deposit, though sounds like it would be the female tenant who would have paid it.

I would text back and say you can't discuss your tenants without their consent but thanks for letting you know.

Atadaddicted Sat 04-Jul-20 17:15:49

Ah just read

I’d be careful
Your property will be left a mess

I hope you have landlord cover that includes malicious damage by the tenant - because I suspect you’re going to need it

Thinkingabout1t Sat 04-Jul-20 17:15:59

I wouldn't do anything, as he's leaving soon anyway. But it's a warning that he may have given the place more wear and tear than you would reasonably expect. So make sure you do a very thorough inspection in case you need to deduct anything from the deposit.

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