References for joint applications

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    References for joint applications

    I have a property which was let to 2 tenants under a joint application for AST.

    The tenants were a mismatch. One was a high earner the other not so.

    During the reference check the agent either by mistake or otherwise reduced the rental amount on the reference form.

    This meant both tenants individually could pass the 40% rental vs income criteria based on one half of the rent each.

    Now if the correct rent had been entered only one tenant would meet the 40% criteria based on one half of the rent each.

    I lodged a compliant but the agent states that only "combined" income is relevant. Thus even though a mistake occurred both tenants PASS on this fact.

    However I maintain that the reference form should note that one tenant with the lower income requires the other tenant to meet the rent. I also state to the agent that the higher earner cannot cover total rent so they've mislead me. The mistake they made has effected my position and I was not in possession of all the facts when I proceeded with the tenants.

    I'm now taking the agent to court as tenants ended up subletting and causing damage etc.

    Question is; is it fair of the agent to only use "combined income" - surely this can't be the case? If they individually reference each tenant why would they only use a combined value?

    Have you suffered a financial loss?

    IMHO as the tenants have joint and several liability then their joint income is what matters.

    The tenants actions are not your agents responsibility - you sue the tenant for any financial loss they caused. If you can not recover from the tenants then you may have a consequential loss claim but only if you can prove you suffered the loss as a result of the agents breach. I am not convinced you would be able to do that - but you have more facts than I.

    FWIW, I took an agent to court in 2009 on a similar basis (well no refs in my case) and won.


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