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Would you proceed to the small claims court?

(10 Posts)
Flossam Thu 18-May-06 19:44:38

Our landlady moved new tenants into our flat we have vacated 14 days before our tenancy ends. She owes us £345, to be exact. This has been going on for about 3 weeks now, and she has been stalling, 'talking to the agents', last week saying she had 'lost' her copy of the tenancy agreement (we still have ours!!) and she would call me weds (yesterday) no word surprise surprise. She questions whether she owes us the money. She has returned our deposits. We were excellent tenants, rent paid by DD, I re-painted the flat prior to leaving and the place was spotless. I suspected she was going to do this, so phoned her to 'check' we were ok to stay in the flat for the weekend a few weeks ago. Then I was told of the new tenants!! Feel mighty annoyed she is trying to screw us over.

SenoraPostrophe Thu 18-May-06 20:17:39

why does she owe you the money? because you vacated early? not sure you would have much of a claim. You could have just kept hold of the keys and given them to her on the tennancy end date.

Flossam Thu 18-May-06 20:22:56

errm, we did!! she gave copies out to numerous agents while we were still living there, one let himself in once! our contract states we must py rent, if we vacate early, untill new tenants move in.

Flossam Thu 18-May-06 20:24:25

sorry that wasn't supposed to sound arsey. she is not a good landlady and i am cross.

bettythebuilder Thu 18-May-06 20:47:40

Is the money she owes you for your deposit? If so, it's yours and she must either pay or give a valid reason for not stumping up the cash.
Maybe threaten her with small claims court - I was once rooked by a crooked landlord, he gave me a cheque that bounced so I took him to small claims. Turned out he had declared himself bankrupt, and the huge house, wedding car business, rented properties were all in his wifes name and I lost all my money.

hocuspocus Thu 18-May-06 20:52:07


I suggest your first step should be to write a formal letter to your Landlady, enclosing a copy of the contract she has "mislaid". You should set out the facts as you understand them ie the date on which you think the new tenants moved in, and also your calculation of the refund that you are owed. Keep a copy of the letter in case you need to show it to the Court.

Set a specific time by which you expect to receive a cheque - I would say no longer than 14 days.

If this is not successful, the small claims court is an option but time consuming. You will need to stump up the issue fee for the proceedings (although this will be paid by the landlady if you win) and you must be prepared to give evidence at a hearing if necessary.

You sound like a fiesty lady to me, so I'm sure you would be fine.

Good luck.

Flossam Thu 18-May-06 20:59:38

Hocus pocus, that sounds like a really good plan. I will give her untill tues to contact us, and if no reply will do this (although I think she has moved and address on contract is no longer correct).

Betty, she paid us our deposit back, reluctantly, last week. When she called last week she said she thought she ought to have kept it as we left early. Originally she made out we had used our deposit as last months rent, definately not the case. She also changed the dates for the tenants moving in, forward a week, between the 1st and 2nd time I contacted her, after I asked her to return our owed rent money, untill I told her the council needed to know the correct dates when it went back to being the earlier date again.

bettythebuilder Thu 18-May-06 21:17:56

Ah, glad you have your deposit, at least.
I remember your previous threads when the landlady gave duplicate keys out willy-nilly, and the hassles you had then.
She sounds dodgy enough to be scared by an "official" approach, as hocuspocus says sending a legal sounding letter clearly stating the timescale she has to reply, and so on.
Good luck! Let us know how you get on.

Flossam Fri 19-May-06 22:01:45

Well apparently (have yet to check) 200 went into my account today, rest will go in next week! Fingers crossed. At least she is no longer suggesting she dosen't owe it now. Once I have been paid we should have enough to fix our holey roof!

bettythebuilder Fri 19-May-06 23:57:28

well done

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