What if I don't have a reference for my last landlord as I was subletting?

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    What if I don't have a reference for my last landlord as I was subletting?

    Hi there, my partner and I have just expressed interest in a new place and the LL had asked us to provide LL references from our previous LL. We have rented a double room in shared flats/houses together for almost 3 years and previous to that both lived with family. We can get references from all of our previous 3 landlords except the landlord at our current place because we are subletting and are not on the lease (we were only informed that the landlord was not aware of this after we paid the deposit and moved in (not the wisest idea on reflection). Would this count against us with the new LL? And should we explain the situation?

    #2
    (Obviously) tell them the truth.
    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...

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      #3
      The landlord who is subletting to you should be able to give you a reference because they're your landlord. Having said that, landlords are not obliged to provide references.

      If your landlord won't give you a reference tell your new LL the truth, as artful suggests.

      Did you get a written tenancy agreement?
      Do you have evidence that your rent was paid in full and on time?
      Do you have evidence that your deposit was protected?

      Subletting is almost certainly against your landlord's agreement and will have made the property a House of Multiple Occupancy (HMO) and they can be in serious trouble for doing that. Perhaps a little subtle suggestion that you know this might elicit a very nice reference?

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        #4
        Originally posted by theartfullodger View Post
        (Obviously) tell them the truth.
        If you read what I wrote again you will notice that I never asked if I should lie. I asked if this would count against us with the new LL, and if we should explain the situation (that is, explain why we weren't on the lease; that we weren't aware that the LL didn't know we were moving in). You've jumped to a conclusion, If you've got any advise on what I actually asked then I'm all ears.

        Edit: We also don't want to ask the current LL for a reference as we don't want the fact that he has found out about the sublet to negatively affect the rest of the house when they ask for references from him.

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          #5
          "And should we explain the situation?" Does sound like you might somehow avoid explaining the situation. Sometimes text can be read in a different way to what was intended.

          Of course you should explain the situation, and tell the truth.

          Many landlords would say that it's not the current landlord's ref that's the most important , but the ones before that, because the current landlord might not give a full picture if you're a bad tenant (I'm not suggesting you are, of course).

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            #6
            If you have lived there for a decent amount of time and paid the rent on time then if you explain to the potential LL as you have to us all here, i see a good chance it will not go against you, life is full of complex events and not everything is straight forward, the LL may give you a reference even though you were not on the lease.

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