Long tenancy, minor points on c/out, LL witholding deposit

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    I'd guess he's doing it to make more money from you.
    It's not a lot of work, and it's very profitable.

    Lots of tenants would just give up and pay up.
    Or pay something when they wouldn't otherwise.

    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).


      A lot of tenants dont know their rights.

      Some tenants dont realise the undisputed amount should be paid back - so they want it settled and some of their money back.

      Some people value their time and will offer something to settle.

      If your landlord doesnt put forward a properly calculated claim supported by evidence they will lose. However quite a few will try it on to see if the tenant rolls over.


        I personally have NEVER had a deposit returned without some sort or posturing or an attempt to money grab from a LL. From my own experience it appears that many LL's view the deposit as a claimable sum in order to mitigate their obligations and expenses in readying a property for the next tenant.

        The advise here is all good, keep records of all communications, photos and details from the check in report, do your own calculations for deductions you are prepared to accept and put these forward formally (it will show how reasonable you are being and then by comparison how unreasonable the LL is).

        Ask for full details and breakdown of the LL's proposed deductions, get a figure because that then crystalises the dispute, should it be less than the full deposit then request the immediate return of the part of the deposit that isn't in dispute.

        My last dispute with the DPS was awaiting adjudication for just under 4 months (in the end I actually settled the matter without their assistance) so just be prepared that the process will take a substantial amount of time (again this could be something that the LL is relying on to dissuade you from pursuing it).

        Above all don't lose hope, if in doubt contact Shelter for more detailed advise, they're not always great (not even available in my area) but they certainly will have a handle on these things.


          Just wanted to provide an update on this. I've submitted the forms and evidence to ADR and I'm awaiting them to accept and proceed. The LL has 10 days to accept arbitration and then a further 10 to submit thier evidence. I've been advised from the agent that disputes with this provider have been getting done in around 6 weeks so hopefully not long.

          The LL has confirmed he's withholding all the deposit, although I've still not formally been told why or how he's arrived at this conclusion. He just said to agent, I'm keeping it all and I'm happy to go to the arbitrator

          Will I be looked upon less favourably for not actively pursuing their information more vigorously and asking if he could explain why and asking for his workings out on the things he think for which we are responsible? It says on the ADR guidelines that you should work to find a resolution before commencing the ADR. Mind you, He did make clear early on he had no intention of returning any of it, and said he wanted arbitration from day one so not sure where that leaves me in terms of working "with" him.

          I reckon if it goes against me this is my workings out:

          Oven new: £239 (checked Curry's for similar on sale now)
          Age: 4 years
          Lifespan: 8 (guidance is 8 to 10)
          Residual lifespan: 4 years
          Depreciation: £29.88
          Reasonable apportionment: £119.50
          Labour: £40 (1 person x 2 hours @ £20 / hour??)
          Note: the oven does not need replacement, it works fine and looks ok.

          Bath sealant
          Cost of replacement: £8.00
          Age: 4 years
          Lifespan: 9 years (??)
          Residual lifespan: 5 years(??)
          Depreciation: £0.89
          Reasonable Apportionment: £4.44
          Labour: £20.00?

          Total if I lose and my labour cost is right: £183.94

          Does the above look right? Do you think its reasonable costs if I lose? If I do lose he still owes me hundreds of pounds if the above works out!?

          I'm all over the place with it, it's really got my head in a fuzz, and it's occupying me something terrible



            Those calculations look quite reasonable.
            As long as you approach it sensibly, the most a rational person/process can do is disagree about the actual numbers.

            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).


              If he does get awarded the princely sum of £180 for his endeavours and I disagree with the arbitrator, am I allowed to follow it up in small claims to get the £180 back?


                You can try, but you almost certainly won't succeed
                You're both agreeing to a binding arbitration process and a court's not going to overturn their decision.
                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).


                  Hi all, just thought I would come back to complete the thread and advise what the outcome of this dispute. The landlord showed themselves to be completely and utterly contemptuous (and a bit clueless - he submitted hardly any evidence). I would consider what has transpired to be a win for me. I hope this entire thread will serve as some solace, and perhaps some encouragement to those in a similar boat - DO NOT GIVE IN, and do not put up with rogue landlords taking you for a ride. Sure it was quite a bit of work (hours / not days) for me building the case but 100% worth it.

                  There was a post on here the other day trolling landlords about chasing their money for replacing 12 year old curtains but this is exactly how my Landlord has acted here (not in that extreme) but just as bad, nearly.

                  The landlord claimed for the following. I've left out the figures just...well just because, but I have put the total at the bottom. Remember the deposit was for a significant sum (nearly, but not quite four figures).

                  TV licence / he said we hadn't paid this - this was just an outright lie. TV licence was paid by DD in full and moved to my new address when we left. I am guessing the standard "this house doesn't have a TV licence" was sent from TVL after we moved out and he has thought it was because we didn't pay?! Idiot.
                  Ruling: Dismissed / Reason: no evidence.

                  Cleaning / he wanted £175.00 - again, a shameless money grab. The adjudicator ruled that the c/out report advised to the contrary and what the LL was claiming for was a full clean which was disingenuous.
                  Ruling: in favour of landlord for a fairly small amount for a tiny bit of cleaning.

                  Redecoration for a wall / he wanted £100.00 - I papered over his hideous wallpaper years ago. Adjudicator took the lifespan into consideration and gave him 25% costs (for what?! about 2 strips of paper?! )
                  Ruling: in favour of landlord, however they stated clearly he doesn't get new for old!

                  Bathrooms (x2) cleaning and resealing / he wanted £200.00 - the old bathroom sealant conundrum (sigh)... the ruling said that they inferred this cost he wanted was for a complete resealing of both bathrooms but they could only see some very limited sealant that needed fixing in evidence. So awarded him 50% of the costs for 50% of the bathrooms, with lifespan considered.
                  Ruling: in favour of landlord for a fairly small amount to have some of it replaced.

                  Lawyers Fees / he wanted £125.00 - this was dismissed out of hand as he didn't submit an invoice or a quote. Solicitor's fees? For filling in a form?! And not even very well, there was no evidence submitted?! This guy is something else....
                  Ruling: Dismissed

                  Oven and washing machine damage / he wanted £400 for new ones - this was again dismissed out of hand as my c/out report said it was fine with a wee bit of cleaning needed on oven. A The above cost for cleaning was deemed enough and he got nothing.
                  Result: Dismissed

                  So all in all he wanted £1,154......one thousand, one hundred and fifty four pounds.....

                  And what did he get.........£118.00!!!!!

                  So bear in mind, I had worked out above I was thinking it might be about £180 and to be honest if he offered £150 odd or so before all of this would probably / maybe have said yes. I hope he's sitting somewhere with a face like.

                  Thanks again for all your help and reassurances. I know some of you LL are mostly all alright, but this guy doesn't help your cause one bit!!!

                  All the best.


                    Thanks for taking the time to come back and update us on how the process panned out.
                    That does sound like a reasonable outcome and it's nice to see that the process works.

                    Well done for sticking to your guns and not just giving up - a lot of people would have done.

                    The best part is that, if there's ever a next time, you know the process which removes 99% of the stress!
                    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).


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