"Lodger" with live-out landlord

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  • Nowler
    replied
    mariner,

    I signed the lodger agreement on the 9th of this month when I got the key. The energy bill is now in my name but says from the 11th. I got a quote for the energy bill and it's £80/month! There is only 2 of use there and we work a lot,so are not there to run up a bill. The landlady has a dehumidifier in our livingroom which doesn't turn off... so is on 24/7. I don't watch tv but if I did, the constant noise from it would bug me. Surely that's why our bill is 80 a month and not the 40 the landlady quoted me before I moved in?

    I'm going to suggest to the new housemate that we go find a new place together. It might be easier together... as opposed to the difficulty I have on my own (cost).

    If we do stay, I'm telling the landlady to either pay for the running costs of the Dehumidifier, or drop our rent to counter it.

    Leave a comment:


  • Logical.Lean
    replied
    That receipt is Hilarious. Only it won't be. Because You'll never see that Deposit again. (Probably).

    Either the LL is as bent as a 2 bob note, or is totally stupid.

    The first - she's renting the flat from someone else, and under a false name or got a residential mortgage and has moved in with a bloke or her mother.
    The second - she doesn't realise how much pain you could give her if you choose to.

    Leave a comment:


  • mariner
    replied
    When did you sign your 'lodger agreement'?
    Her receipt is adequate as an acknowledgement of cash received from <name>, but is unhelpful to you in a dispute.
    If you want a specific format, compile your own, with space for her to sign,

    Leave a comment:


  • MdeB
    replied
    Originally posted by Nowler View Post
    Any suggestions of cautions for me for when I give my LL my months notice that I'm leaving?

    I have to give it in writing, but what I did for my last temp LL was email it and ask for an email back to state reciept of it. In that email I state as much as I thought of such as deposit amount, move in date, move out date, rent was up to date etc...

    My current LL probably won't do this via email, so how do I do this via paper?
    Send it first class to the LL address in your agreement and get a "proof of posting" receipt from a post office.
    Allow at least 4 days over the month for delivery (there could be weekend/bank holiday in the way).
    If you are really worried, then you might be able to take 2 copies (use printed, not hand-written) to post office and get the staff to witness one saying that they saw you put an identical copy in the post to your LL (but only likely to work in a small post office, like in my village).

    Also, if you have LL email address, once posted email giving notice and asking for acknowledgement, and state that a signed paper copy of your notice is in the post.

    Leave a comment:


  • MdeB
    replied
    Originally posted by Nowler View Post
    The lodgers agreement says: EARLY TERMINATION - any party may at anytime end this agreement earlier than the end of the term by giving to the other written notice of 1 month

    PS: The term on the contract is 6 months.
    I believe that if, as seems probable, you have a tenancy, then the notice clause is valid for your notice to end the tenancy before 6 months, but not for the landlord.
    i.e. you can give 1 month notice to landlord, but landlord must follow S21 or S8 rules.

    Once the 6 months is up, if you stay, then you would have a statutory periodic tenancy (a new tenancy, so deposit laws apply again) and you would have to give at least one month's notice ending on last day of a rental period.

    Originally posted by Nowler View Post
    It's a 2 bed apartment with me staying in one room, and currently a guy who is moving out in a few days in another.
    There is another person moving in the day he moves out, so both rooms are being rented by people who are not the landlord.
    Originally posted by Nowler View Post
    I will be collecting the other renters part of the energy cost, as the bill will be in my name.
    Ensure that guy leaving has paid for his share of all bills before you take on responsibility, and take money from new guy monthly to cover his share.
    Requiring you to take on responsibility for energy bills is further evidence that you are not a lodger.

    Leave a comment:


  • theartfullodger
    replied
    Unless the agreement states rent must be paid in cash then from now on pay by cheque. Take a copy before handing over cheque.

    That she doesn't pay it in is her problem.

    Yup, tax cheat, grass her up to HMRC. If you think she gets benefits (MOST adults do..) grass her up to DWP also for her extra income.

    Leave a comment:


  • HantsAgent
    replied
    jpkeates,

    I totally see where you’re coming from and, as ever, only a judge will decide for sure.

    I doubt it can be a joint AST as the OP (presumably) didn’t sign up at the same time as the other occupier and/or have any intention to create a legal connection with that person. So I would say that they are each renting a room on an AST.

    It’s far from definite, but I’d be worried for any landlord who came to me trying to help them out of this scenario.

    Leave a comment:


  • jpkeates
    replied
    Originally posted by HantsAgent View Post
    Exclusive possession - check
    That's the bit I'm less happy about.

    There's someone else living in the house, and the contract isn't going to properly define what's being rented because it's an agreement aimed at a lodger.
    It's a big step to infer a joint tenancy for all of the occupants, so two separate tenancies?

    Leave a comment:


  • Nowler
    replied
    Thank you everyone!
    I appreciate your help immensely!

    I will proceed with caution and start looking for a new place.

    I'll let you know how it all plays out...

    Leave a comment:


  • HantsAgent
    replied
    I’m pretty confident you have a lease (tenancy) and not a licence.

    Rent charged - check
    Defined period of time - check
    Exclusive possession - check

    But I agree with others that your best bet is to move out and move on.

    If there’s any conflict over notice, move out date or returning your deposit then you can point the landlord in this direction and threaten to sue for a deposit penalty and/or report her to HMRC (almost certainly a tax dodge).

    Leave a comment:


  • nukecad
    replied
    Thoughts:

    Check here, it should reassure you that you are probably a tenant and not a lodger, regardless of what the LL or any paperwork says.
    https://england.shelter.org.uk/housi...rights_checker

    So you are very likely an 'Occupier with basic protection' (Tenant).
    More about the legal side of that, deposits, ending the tenancy, illegal eviction, etc.
    http://england.shelter.org.uk/housin...sic_protection

    Remember that as a tenant you will also have legal obligations about giving notice, it's not one sided.

    Take photographs of everything now, with a datestamp on them if you camera/phone can do that.
    They will show what the property is like now, making it harder for LL to claim later that any damage was caused by you.

    Wait and see what happens with the deposit.
    A lodgers deposit doesn't have to be protected, so if she does then it is an indication that she knows it is a tenancy.
    If she doesn't or doesn't do it correctly then she's liable for penalties for not protection a tenants deposit correctly.

    Leave a comment:


  • Nowler
    replied
    Thought as much.

    One last question for now.
    Any suggestions of cautions for me for when I give my LL my months notice that I'm leaving?

    I have to give it in writing, but what I did for my last temp LL was email it and ask for an email back to state reciept of it. In that email I state as much as I thought of such as deposit amount, move in date, move out date, rent was up to date etc...

    My current LL probably won't do this via email, so how do I do this via paper? If I write up 2 of them (one for me and one for her) and we both sign each copy. Will that work? Does there need to be a witness?

    I just want to ensure I get my deposit back in full.
    Though, hopefully waiting the 30 days she has to protect my deposit should ensure that, provided she hasn't actually protected it. Or... now that i think of it, if she has protected it then she can say she doesnt have it. And acknowleging that any damage that's current wasnt my doing, she has no reason to withhold it.

    Thoughts?
    Sorry for pestering you with all these questions

    Leave a comment:


  • jpkeates
    replied
    Piece of string.

    Leave a comment:


  • Nowler
    replied
    Cheers for the info.
    I will start looking for a new place soon. I want to settle in somewhere for the medium to long term, but I cant commit to buying cumbersome things when I could be kicked out any time.

    If she was to change the locks suddenly or gave me 1 months notice to move out, this would be in breach of my what seems to be a tenancy (not lodger) contract. In light of thid, how long might it take for the courts to intervene, as well as make a decision?

    Or does this answer vary quite a bit?

    Leave a comment:


  • jpkeates
    replied
    If she wanted to evict you through the courts it would take about 4 or 5 months (unless you'd stopped paying rent).
    Because of the "informal" way your landlord has done things it might take several goes.

    When they won, it would cost you a bit more than £300 in legal costs and then less than £100 if they used bailiffs.
    The landlord would be out of pocket by the £300 each time they lost.

    Which is why the landlord is always tempted to short cut things if they can.

    What I'd look to do is sort yourself out, then find somewhere else to live that's more organised and move there.

    Leave a comment:

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