Breaking a lease early due to on going issues with house

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    Breaking a lease early due to on going issues with house

    This is a bit of a book, however I'm at a complete loss as to what to do.

    As the topic states my husband and I are hoping to break our current lease due to issues with the home we're currently in. We've been here for over two years and agreed to renew last September however the actual renewal of said lease didn't occur until December. Our landlord lives just down the road and manages issues herself (in that she contacts a building company that does shoddy work). Since we've lived here we've had contractors out almost once a month for issues that are not wear and tear items. The biggest issue is the plumbing. Our home has three ensuites (which is part of the reason why we took the house in the first place) however each ensuite has had plumbing issues.

    The downstairs ensuite is our "main" bathroom as it has the largest shower in the house. Since we've lived here there has always been humidity/moisture issues within said bathroom however they increased tenfold once we moved in and began using said shower regularly. A fan was installed in an outside wall to help remove some of the humidity, however it's not enough. The walls have begun to crumble, paint bubble, and radiator is slowly rusting. In 2017 our landlord came out with the owner of the building firm that she uses and made a laundry list of the repairs that need to be made in our home. The issue with the downstairs ensuite was noted however the contractor did not come out to repair said bath until roughly Jan 2018. This was quite an involved "repair" that didn't actually "solve" anything. The builders assumed there was a leak in the wall and removed a large portion of wall from the adjoining bedroom. 6 weeks later it was all patched up and they were finally finished. Not too long after this we began to notice that paint was beginning to bubble again in the same areas that had recently been repainted. We decided to begin using the smaller shower in our upstairs however it began to leak through the ceiling of our living room. Shortly after this we had a service call with the plumber regarding our boiler breaking (again) and pointed out the issue with both bathrooms. He stated that the upstairs shower cubicle just required a decent bit of mastic/caulk which my husband said he could do (the plumber stated that it would be a separate service call) solely so we could have a functioning shower room. My husband did as directed however it wasn't enough/not the only area that water could leak, and said shower continues to leak through the ceiling. We moved back to using the downstairs ensuite (which is off of our daughter's room) and the humidity issue only got worse. Knowing how long and drawn out our landlord's preferred contractor takes in doing any job we decided to "wait and see" (because moving our 12 yo daughter out of her bedroom and back with her younger brother was not a situation that any of us want to deal with; also despite having three ensuites this is a very small cottage and we have very limited space to move furniture to/from). Things have finally come to a head as the downstairs shower now floods/doesn't drain quickly enough. Once again we had our landlord out along with the owner of the building firm to go over what needed repaired. We pointed out that walls that were beginning to crumble in our daughter's bedroom during the first repair last year was ignored and painted over and is now worse, as is the downstairs ensuite. At this point we have two showers that aren't fully functionally. We have another ensuite with a bathtub however the plumbing for it leaked through our kitchen ceiling last November. Despite it being repaired I'm not keen on having everything in my kitchen waterlogged once again. At this point the constant repairs (there are numerous electrical issues as well as leaks/plumbing with the downstairs kitchen sink) have become disruptive and the idea of another drawn out repair that would require moving our daughter from her bedroom for who knows how long has finally pushed us to find a new home. The lease was renewed in December and it's only March, however we did not anticipate that the situations with our bathrooms/showers would be this critical. Is it feasible for us to break our lease (there's no break clause) without severe penalties due to the constant issues associated with this property?

    #2
    If you've lived there for two years and agreed to renew the lease, I don't see any reason that would allow you to break the lease unless it arose since the renewal.
    And this sounds like it has been happening since the start.

    Why on earth did you renew for another fixed term?

    You might talk to your landlord about ending the lease and they might agree if you threaten to involve environmental health - which you should do anyway.
    When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
    Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

    Comment


      #3
      We renewed because at the time we were told things would be repaired ASAP and yet.. they haven't- it's only gotten worse. Practically speaking, the level work required to properly fix ALL of the issues that have arisen since we've moved in would require the house be vacated due to the disruption that it would cause. The home is a 1600s cottage that was completely gutted and refitted about 4 years ago. We're the first tenants to move in since the renovation, therefore the guinea pigs.

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        #4
        In which case, I'd write to the landlord detailing everything that's wrong and asking for a formal response outlining everything that will be done to address them and the timescale for the fixes.

        Point out that the property is basically uninhabitable and that you will be forced to contact environmental health if matters continue as they are,

        Say that, if the response is unsatisfactory, you wish to be released from the contract as the landlord is not able to supply the service required.

        Or, get a solicitor to act on your behalf.
        When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
        Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

        Comment

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