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'Unpredictable' Landlord

(7 Posts)
DrMcDreamy Wed 15-Dec-10 17:25:46

Little bit of background, my partner and our 2 children were renting a property previously that the Landlord decided to sell and we were given notice. We found a property to move to but none of the promised work was carried out and the place was uninhabitable so we pulled out at the 11th hour. We luckily found another (better) house for the same money in the same village (where schools etc are)and moved in last Tuesday.

It took us over a month from viewing the property to moving in as the LL decided to go with a management company who happened to be away when we agreed to tke the property. We lived with my parents during this time. We eventually moved in last Tuesday. On Friday we received an email from the management company saying they were no longer dealing with the property and to deal with the Landlord direct.

The LL came to visit us on the weekend very stressed out saying they felt the management company had been a barrier to efficient communication and would be happier to just deal with us from there on in. We discussed a couple of minor issues re small adjustments to decoration etc (they were heavy smokers and paintwork needs freshening up as yellow from nicotine) and following the meeting i felt that we were both happy.

As the LL left we noticed that the porch had developed a leak in the roof (probably due to weight of heavy melting snow), LL said to contact someone to fix it and get them billed. So far so good.

On Sunday the shower began to leak into the kitchen quite badly, we contacted the LL via phone, stressing that we understood stuff like this would occur at the beginning of a let and we were happy to work with them to solve this.

LL arrived on Monday morning, fixed shower leak and attempted to fix porch roof leak, seemed affable chap (DH to the DW we met at the weekend) and talked about us enjoying the property for years to come and how they were mortgage free and did not need to sell the house (had previously been on the market prior to being let).

This morning I wake to an email asking if we had considered selling our house to buy theirs (we rent out a 2 bed property that we used to live in but as we now have 2 children we rent a larger property as unable to afford to buy and don't want to lose that foothold we have on the property market). I was a bit WTF but responded kindly along the lines that if it was an option for us then we would have considered it. I also add on to the end that the porch roof continues to leak despite his repairs and how did he wish me to proceed.

I receive in response an email that basically says he does not need this hassle and he will be putting the house on the market once the 6 month tenancy is up. I respond along the lines of how that is a bit of a shock and how we'd appreciate the opportunity to discuss this (we've only been in here 8 days!!) and how if that were to be the case if he'd be kind enough to give us plenty of notice as we are getting married in 6 months and the day our tenancy expires we fly on honeymoon and he replies, it is best you look for somewhere else for your family as I will be selling the house in 6 months as opposed to it being an ongoing problem for us.

I just don't know how to respond. I'm gutted. How would anyone else deal with this?

BigBadMummy Wed 15-Dec-10 17:32:10

Your landlord is a prick.

That's a technical term btw.

Warning bells ring that the management agency have dumped him, or vice versa.

I would suggest you do not try and deal with this landlord, he is unreasonable and does not sound like a professional landlord. He actually sounds slightly unhinged if he thinks "he doesnt need the hassle".

Normally I would suggest you try and reason with him, do the "having the place empty will cost you money" "you many not get the same rent" type line but actually you need to take control.

What happens, say, if you agree with him that you can stay and then he serves you notice anyway, or changes his mind?

I would say that after four months you serve Notice and you move out before going on your honeymoon if you can.

YOu really dont need the stress.

This is of course a simplistic view and I dont know if financially you can do this. HOwever, I do think you need to be shot of this landlord if he is showing his true colours after 8 days.

LIZS Wed 15-Dec-10 17:34:36

Sorry. Is this his only rental ? I suspect he is only now finding out that renting out your own property ios not as easy as it sounds and in the long run may not pay for itself so he wants to cut his losses. I can understand you feel let down but would you really buy it if you were able to ? Sounds like it may not be in that good condition. Maybe he'd give you first option but tbh I suspect he may prove awkward and want to get best price so put it on the open market. Your best bet is to negotiate on the date he markets it from so that you are not having that stress in the run up to your wedding at least. 6 months is a minimum period and you can roll on month by month until you find somewhere and/or he sells (ll usually has to give 2 months notice and you 1).

DrMcDreamy Wed 15-Dec-10 17:37:44

Thank you for your response. I'm sitting here in tears. I thought we'd finally found somewhere we could settle and I feel like the rug has been completely pulled away from underneath us. As I understand it we are tied to the contract for 6 months as is he, is that correct?

We're both employed but moving house and all the associated costs mount up and we can't afford to be doing it every 6 months, not to mention how unsettling it is for our lovely children and the fact we're rapidly using up all of our goodwill with friends for helping us move! We had to shift everything into storage and then out again in the space of a month and I'm sure you know how much crap a family can accumulate!

DrMcDreamy Wed 15-Dec-10 17:42:32

LIZS yes this is his only rental, it was previously on the market for a year but did not sell. We are not in a position at all to buy the house as at the moment it is way yout of our budget but in the future that may well change.

I think you are right in that he has panicked that renting a property is not easy but to be honest the things that have gone wrong are minor and he would have had to deal with them regardless of whether he had tenants in or not. Especially the porch roof, I suspect with that one day he would have come to check on the property - or the estate agent would have come to show someone round to find the ceiling on the floor thus making it a bigger job than it is at present.

The property in the main is in good condition although a bit dated and I suspect is why it didn't sell - also an unrealistic price.

I can't believe someone hasn't spelt out to him before now the responsibilities of a LL and the fact that at the beginning of a let teething problems often occur. I guess I just feel quite let down.

BigBadMummy Wed 15-Dec-10 17:47:55

I suspect the management company did spell out to him what his responsibilities were and that is why he got rid of them. He didnt like what he heard.

You are right that you are tied for six months. But you need to check your Tenancy Agreement. I hate to tell you but if it is a fixed yearly contract then you are there for a year.

YOu need to read the terms of your Tenancy Agreement.

By all means talk to him, or attempt to. Show him that you are reasonable and do want to set down roots.

What will he do if you leave? Have to pay for another tenancy, maybe have a void period, lose rent? If you can make him see that he will see that you are the better option.

DrMcDreamy Wed 15-Dec-10 21:37:46

Thanks, it is a standard 6 month AST so we are here for 6 months at least. I'm half expecting that in a couple of months when things have hopefully been trouble free he will change his mind again, however a bit of me has also had the house tarnished a bit. I thought it was going to be a home for us and our kids and we're just getting dicked around by another LL. I'm a lovely LL, why can't everyone be the same?!

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