Check-out/check-in fee responsibility swopped

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    Check-out/check-in fee responsibility swopped

    Hi all,

    Writing as T. Just moved out after second (consecutive) AST in a property. The first had me responsible for check in fee, LL for check out. The second swopped this round. However, no check out and check in was done at the changeover point between tenancies.

    LL now wants to deduct check out fee as per second tenancy agreement. I’m kicking myself that I didn’t spot the switch. I don’t think this was deliberate, just a different template used.

    Unfortunately, making an appeal on fairness is unlikely to have an effect as it looks like we’re heading to ADR (LL refuses to believe that there is this thing called betterment).

    I suspect this is one to learn from, but wondered if it made any difference that the LL didn’t incur any fees, contrary to both TAs?

    Thanks in advance!






    #2
    This is going to become academic in about a month's time, when tenant fees are outlawed.

    Comment


      #3
      Why do you think this is betterment for LL?
      What was the period between Tenancies?

      Comment


        #4
        Thanks, both.

        I don’t think this point is betterment, Mariner; sorry for unclear post. That was to describe the wider context, where the LL is insisting on other deductions based on full costs, ie brand new for very old.

        The tenancies were consecutive with no gap.

        Comment


          #5
          So, if I can. You moved in with an inventory and you paid for the check in.

          After you moved out you realised that in the 2nd AST you became liable for the check out, but did not arrange for one, but your LL did and is claiming the cost.

          First thought is that he won't be getting new for old!

          What evidence has your LL given you for his deductions?

          Comment


            #6
            Hi Stef,

            Yes, that’s right on the situation.

            I’m feeling pretty confident about the position on the other proposed deductions - agree with some; have plenty of evidence to back me up on the others.

            The check out fee is the only one I’m unsure about. I suspect the second TA means I will have to grit my teeth and pay up but wondered if the LL avoiding any cost made a difference.

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by SELondonLL View Post
              Thanks, both.

              I don’t think this point is betterment, Mariner; sorry for unclear post. That was to describe the wider context, where the LL is insisting on other deductions based on full costs, ie brand new for very old.
              .......
              New for old is betterment.

              e.g. If a chair with a life of 10 years is damaged beyond repair for a tenancy started when chair was 5 years old, tenancy ended 4 years later, landlord only entitled to 10% of replacement costs. He can buy a new one, but tenant doesn't have to pay for it.

              Yes, go to ADR.

              I am legally unqualified: If you need to rely on advice check it with a suitable authority - eg a solicitor specialising in landlord/tenant law...

              Comment


                #8
                It would depend on the exact wording.

                There's a difference between "the tenant will pay for a checkout" and "the tenant will pay the checkout fee".
                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


                  #9
                  The best way forward is just to go to ADR.

                  Let the LL put his case in writing, then you'll have a better idea of what you can refute.

                  It is possible the adjudicator will find the change from check in to check out to be a bit too sneaky. But it is more likely that you will have to pay... what is the charge?

                  Comment


                    #10
                    The wording in the second agreement is that we “pay a reasonable sum for the “check out””. The amount is reasonable: £145.

                    Thanks again for prompt replies and the advice.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      I'd argue that a reasonable sum would be the cost of the check-out and if there isn't any cost, the reasonable sum would be zero.

                      It might not wash, but that's the approach I'd take.
                      And I'd also make the point that it was an unexpected change from the first agreement that wasn't brought to your attention.
                      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


                        #12
                        If LL did not provide an inventory at the start of the second tenancy and the agreement did not refer to the inventory at the start of the first tenancy, then LL may not be able to claim for any damages.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by jpkeates View Post
                          I'd argue that a reasonable sum would be the cost of the check-out and if there isn't any cost, the reasonable sum would be zero.

                          It might not wash, but that's the approach I'd take.
                          And I'd also make the point that it was an unexpected change from the first agreement that wasn't brought to your attention.
                          Sounds like there was a check out for the second tenancy, not the first and the landlord is now claiming for that cost. I'd argue that if the landlord wants to claim the cost of the checkout at the end of the tenancy then he also needs to show that any damage for which he is claiming arose during the second tenancy. Pretty week arguments - but if I was deciding the dispute and the change was pointed out I'd be less inclined to agree with the landlords other claims.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Thanks, all, your advice is very much appreciated.

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