Ex landlord asking for money

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    Ex landlord asking for money

    We left our rented house three months ago and we had blocked toilet problems for the last two years of our tenancy. We let them know that the toilet was flushing and the bowl just filled with water. They sent a plumber round but he confessed not knowing about blockages and only fitted toilets. We let the LL know. A friend came to stay and had years of drainage experience. He said it was an air block, moved the large pipe behind the toilet allowing air to escape and the toilet worked straight away. Again I let the LL know that it appeared fixed. Months later it happened again but moving the pipe didn’t work so I let the LL know. The LL’s husband turned up with his friend who was a plumber who fitted a small pipe to the large pipe allowing air to escape but said that he would have to come back to investigate further. He died that night, I know right!

    I did speak to the LL on the phone expressing my condolences and said that there was no rush in sending another plumber due to their grief. Eventually the LL husband turned up with 6 bottles of drain unblocked which seemed to work. A while later the toilet blocked again and I used unblocker to clear it and it was okay on and off. They didn’t send anyone else round and we then moved out but I did tell the LL when we gave notice that the toilet was still blocking.
    Now I received a letter from the LL saying they had discovered a flood caused by the blocked toilet and they were not aware that it was blocked and had to call Dynorod out and they found a compacted lump of tissue, wipes and female pads in the drainage pipes and want us to pay for it as they say it was blocked for the past two years.
    I am will to pay if we are responsible.
    This house was a David Wilson new build four years ago and I know of at least one other person who had to leave their rented house as the drains kept blocking and this LL, who has other houses on this estate, had to change the drainage pipes in a house across the road as the wrong size had been put in.
    would I be wrong in asking them what initially caused the blockage as surely blockages should not occur in new pipes if they are the right size and been laid correctly. Why did it clear and then block again? I had used an auger to see if there was a blockage but there didn’t seem to be anything preventing it from going through to the Main drains.
    Can I ask them exactly where the blockage was found in case it was linked to neighbours?
    Not sure how to proceed so any advice would be appreciated

    #2
    Either ignore ex-landlord or reply politely thanking him for his request, but don't pay.

    He is at liberty to sue for £££ but I doubt he'd win. You are at liberty to sue for substandard housing and wasted time and effort, but I'd doubt you'd win.

    Perhaps landlord will be viewing.

    Ignore.
    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


      #3
      Thanks, I’m sure that she will take us to court as she is that type of person

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        #4
        How did you communicate your earlier issues with the LL ?

        email is very useful for such issues, far better than text or whatsapp

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          #5
          Email for the majority, which I still have

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            #6
            I'd decline any responsibility and point out that the blockage was an issue throughout the tenancy and that you continually brought it to their attention.
            There's no reason to think that the blockage was caused by you.

            If you think that it was caused by you (or that that's quite likely) you could agree to pay,
            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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              #7
              Thanks, I really don’t know if it was our fault as the face wipes she states are within the blockage are a type my wife doesn’t use and she doesn’t flush her ones down the loo anyway...I can’t see how a massive compacted block can let water through one day and not the next

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                #8
                The only things that should go down a toilet are poo, pee and paper. No wipes or ladies items. When you're washing up any hard fats (lard etc) should be wiped off the plates, grill pan etc before washing up. I've just had to have a drain unblocked due to a fat burg caused by hard fat from the washing up. However, this was in old Victorian drains where you have to be more careful what you put down the drain. I would not expect a new house to have these problems.

                A massive block can let water through one day and not the next due to movement within the blockage. Drain cleaner can only do so much. The cause of the blockage has to be sorted out. It sounds like the problem is due to faulty drains not what you've been doing. The drain people can pop a camera down the drain to see what the problem is and you can see this on the screen.

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                  #9
                  Thanks. I’m not trying to get out of paying if it was down to us but I would like to know if there is likely to be any other cause, knowing what new builds are like

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                    #10
                    It could be a fault in the laying of the sewer pipe. If the pipe is joined and the join hasn't been joined smoothly, or has been broken or damaged, there might be a bit where paper, wipes etc can snag on it and cause a blockage. If the damage/blockage is between your house and the main sewer it's the landlords problem to fix, but if it's after the edge of your property then your local water board would normally fix it.

                    When a new estate is built, it's the utilities that go in first. So, I suppose, that gives the sewer pipes an opportunity to get damaged with all the other building work that goes on.

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                      #11
                      Interesting, thanks

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                        #12
                        If you flushed any wipes down the toilet, including the ones that purport to be flushable but aren't, then you may have caused or added to the problem. Whether that's the whole problem is hard to say. If the landlord wants to claim from you they will need reasonable evidence that there was no pre-existing problem.

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                          #13
                          I would write back and enclose a copy of an email highlighting the issue when you were a tenant. And politely suggest that if said LL had acted then the problem would have been resolved.

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                            #14
                            Just ignore, no response.
                            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


                              #15
                              Originally posted by Neelix View Post
                              I would write back and enclose a copy of an email highlighting the issue when you were a tenant. And politely suggest that if said LL had acted then the problem would have been resolved.

                              yes. Try that first

                              then do what I suggest above if they contact you again

                              Comment

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