Please help. Withholding rent or going to court?

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    Please help. Withholding rent or going to court?

    Hello,

    We would like to surrender the tenancy and leave early due to many issues with the flat and the landlord: Boiler broke down on several occasions leaving us with no hot water and heating for weeks – we even had to involve the council, the landlord did not pay the gas bill, cutting us from supply until we paid it (it is her responsibility according to the contract)…

    We paid 6months in advance and have a fixed 12month tenancy. Next payment is due in March which is when we would like to leave. However, the landlord is refusing to communicate with us – ignoring our messages and declining our calls. She also did not include her address in the contract – We’ve asked her to give it to us many times for months.
    It is a HMO tenancy and we have recently discovered that she does not have a licence for the flat. Additionally, one of the rooms is smaller than the required standard. We signed a ‘Resident Landlord Agreement’ but were told by a few people that we should have been given an AST tenancy – our deposit is currently unprotected.

    How can we leave the tenancy early? Is it possible to leave on the grounds that the landlord broke the contract by not paying for the utilities, not giving us an inventory, giving us a wrong type of agreement, etc…? If no, how can we surrender the tenancy and receive our deposit back if the landlord does not communicate with us and refuses to disclose her address? What would the consequences of not paying rent be? We just really want to leave, the flat is horrible... Thank you.

    #2
    Sorry you've got such a terrible landlord. This one does sound unusually based if that's any comfort going forward. You can usually find out who owns the property by spending £3 on the Land Registry website and this will mostly be the same person who is your landlord. If the property needs a licence, (not all HMOs do) you can use a Rent Repayment Order to claim all your rent back. It sounds very possible that the document you've been given is a sham and you really have an AST, in which case you can sue the landlord for a penalty for failing to protect the deposit. If all you want is to leave with your deposit returned these might be useful bargaining positions.

    You are going to need help with this so I suggest you call the Shelter helpline in the first instance and tell them what you've told us. Good luck and let us know how it goes.

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      #3
      Have a read of the latest How to Rent guide on the governments website, this will aid you to your rights as well as your LL's obligations, you should also surrender your tenancy formally in writing.

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        #4
        Please complete & pastehttps://forums.landlordzone.co.uk/forum/residential-letting-questions/66253-useful-information-which-may-be-requested-from-new-posters

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