Controlling a LA

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    Controlling a LA

    I have had two LAs handing over house keys to unsuitable Ts even before I had the chance to see their references or credit check results became available despite prior verbal promises from LAs that such an event would never happen. In both occasions I had two evict Ts because of non payment of rent. In one ocassion LA gave the keys to T even though the TA had only been signed by T. It was then I found out that with only Ts signature a TA will become valid if keys are handed over at the same time.

    I have to see a new LA this sunday and I am planning to ask him for a formal letter with witnessed signature obliging himself that if for whatever reason LA hands over the house keys to someone without my prior written consent, that LA will automatically become the guarantor of the rent payment for however long T occuppies the property with or without a valid TA. My question is wether LA could be held legally responsible for rent payments(whenever T defaults) in the hypothetical case that he agrees to write such letter. Thanks.

    #2
    Well a LA is suppose to do what you instruct. Unless youre paying extra for guranteed rent, no LA will change their terms of business and make themselves liable for non payment of rent

    Comment


      #3
      Giving keys to T without LA being a client of LL sounds like an LA scam and illegal IMO
      Any reputable LA should provide LL with standard terms of business contract for prior acceptance & signature
      Prior to signature, you can require individual changes eg no T to be agreed without LL approval after LL receives all T application and credit and other refs
      If LA not willing, walk away

      Q. How did LAs obtain keys if not instructed/engaged by LL?

      Comment


        #4
        mrcid,

        Well, yes. LA is supposed to do what LL instructs, although in most written agreements between LL and LA there is no requirement for prior written confirmation that LL approves handing over keys to T. Relying only on verbal instructions is open to abuse and difficult to prove in court. But assuming that LL could prove in court that LA was negligent handing over keys without first seeking LL approval, how can a court assess amount of damage caused to LL if there is no specified penalty in the contract for handing over keys ? This is why I thought that a letter by LA as explained previously could make legal action simpler and work as a deterrent against abuse by LA..

        Comment


          #5
          Do I understand that those issues are in the past and that you are now looking at a new agent and wanting to avoid those problems again?

          Do you really need an agent to let this place? DIY marketing is much cheaper and DIY referencing gives more peace of mind. And you'll do a better job because it's you who will have to pick up he pieces if things go wrong.

          If an agent is essential to you, ensure they are at least ARLA registered. It's not a guarantee, but it at least means they should be abiding by certain trade standards. And put in writing that you expect the following:
          To meet the prospective tenants before signing
          To see their references, credit checks and proofs of identity
          To sign the lease yourself (or if necessary, for them to sign on your behalf only with your written authority)
          IANAL (I am not a lawyer). Anything I say here is just an opinion, so should not be relied upon! Always check your facts with a professional who really knows their onions.

          Comment


            #6
            mariner,


            A. LL ia a client of LA. But LA have hended keys to unsuitable Ts. I have already made LA put in the contracts that no T will have keys without LL approval however a penalty should also be stablished for not following what the contract says.

            My original questions remains unanswered: Can LA be held legally responsible for rent payments(whenever T defaults) in the hypothetical case that he agrees to write such letter ? So far I have not managed to get a LA to incorporare a penalty clause in their contracts. But would the penalty be enforceable in court if spelled out in a letter separate from the contract that does not mention a penalty? Could someone answer this specific question please? Thanks.

            Comment


              #7
              I need an agent Grr as I do not have the time to show people round and collect references etc myself. I have been let down by two apparently well reputes agents registered with their trade associations etc. Thanks,

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