Tenant blackmailing landlord, to avoid paying rent

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    Tenant blackmailing landlord, to avoid paying rent

    background info, it's a very long story but basically 5 tenants took a 3 bed place then kept trying to get the rent reduced (despite me having let it several times at the current rent). We offered to enlargen one of the rooms so they could fit a double bed, basically turning it from 2 doubles and a single to 3 doubles and keep the rent the same. They made this a condition of taking the property but also made a deal with the leaving tenants as to when they would move in. This date was much sooner than allowed us to do necessary works to prepare the property. In fact it was on the same day the last tenants were moving out.

    I reluctantly agreed but explained works would need to be carried out while they were in occupation, which they accepted at the time. Now they are using these works as an excuse not to pay rent saying they have not been given free undisturbed use of the property because workmen had to visit the property on several occasions.

    I spent around £1000 enlarging the room, redecorating, laying a new carpet etc... Because the tenants sleep throughout the day (all of them!) till very late in the afternoon EVERY DAY! workmen had to keep rescheduling to avoid disturbing them.

    Anyway this is what they are proposing and right now I'm madly keen to get them out, because since I have done improvements on the flat I could be getting more rent. Ungrateful *censored*'s!

    Is signing up to such an agreement dangerous? What bits are ok or not if any?

    thanks in advance...


    [edited by slyrubies - personal details removed - thanks for the advice]

    AGREEMENT BETWEEN LANDLORD (me) & TENANTS (them) Dated 28.10.05 Version 2

    The Landlord reluctantly agrees at the Tenants request to:
     Replace the Tenancy Agreement of 9.9.05 (which may not have ever taken effect?) by this Agreement of 28.10.05
     To the tenants not paying the unpaid rent of £1191.67 overdue to Landlord 9.10.05 as their way of taking back their entire deposit of £1191.67
     To forgiving the Tenants all rents that are due to Landlord for the full Fixed Term 9.9.05 to 8.3.05 after the date the leave.
     Where the terms of this Agreement leave subsidiary matters in any doubt reliance guidance to still be had from the remaining terms & conditions of the original Tenancy Agreement.

    We ask for possession with judgement for unpaid rent, a charge for past use and occupation, future rent, a future charge for use and occupation until property recovery date and landlords cost.

    The Tenants have suggested that in return they will agree;:
     To make strenuous efforts to leave the Property on 8.11.05, either returning all keys or paying for a new Yale lock barrel & an extra 5 Yale keys.
     Thereafter to pay £275 per week rent weekly in advance should they – despite their efforts to move out – have to remain in the Property an extra 1 or 2 weeks.
     That if they fail to leave the Property by 22.11.05 that they will not oppose but will support the Landlord making immediate application to the court for expedited possession of the Property with judgement for unpaid rent, a charge for past use and occupation, future rent, a future charge for use and occupation until property recovery date and landlords cost.
     In the absence of the Deposit - to pay all outstanding utility bills ie gas, electricity, water, TV licence, council tax from 9.9.05 to the date they leave the property. In the case of fixed bills like council tax, water and TV licence to pay before leaving as soon as the leaving date is known. Or if token meters are installed for gas and electricity before the Tenants leave the Property to immediately pay the gas and electricity bills up to the date of installation of the token meters. Also to pay the Landlord for any damage, currently believed to be only replacement of the single broken balustrade strut, & to replace any contents broken or missing. All four tenants accept that they remain jointly and severally liable should the Landlord be obliged to seek a county court judgement for any rent, utility bills, contents or repairs not immediately paid by the Tenants
     To permit the Landlord and/or his agents to advertise the Property and show prospective tenants over the Property from now on and to permit them to clean and/or tidy the Property prior to showing.
     To permit the Landlord to urgently arrange that the gas and electricity service providers install token meters operated by pre-payment cards if possible before the Tenants leave the Property.
    Last edited by slyrubies; 05-11-2005, 15:54 PM.

    OK first point, please please dont do page long posts, no-one will read them(apart from me apparently!).

    And why in gods name are you even considering making that new agreement??? I see no benefit in it for you. You have them over a barrel. Apply for Section 8 at the courts, as long as they are over 2 months in arrears. I fail to see any reason why you would forfeit the rent owed to you. They are obliged to pay the rent for the 6 month term(albeit you are supposed to attempt to mitigate your losses if they actually leave), so make them pay it!

    Even if you were considering agreeing with that agreement, which as you may have guessed I strongly advice against, you cannot do so in its current form. It is so vague in areas that it would never stand up in court. And I am unsure if it is proposed to be a new tenancy agreement, or a seperate agreement from your tenancy agreement, but I suspect the former, and if so some of the terms are totally against the tenants statutory rights.

    Do not agree to this load of rubbish. Serve a Section 8 on their ungrateful behinds and get all of your owed money.
    Any posts by myself are my opinion ONLY. They should never be taken as correct or factual without confirmation from a legal professional. All information is given without prejudice or liability.


      Well I have to say posts by SlyRubies are getting to be repeated tales of getting into situations and discussions that would be real no-go areas to the experienced landlord. Extending houses & recarpeting because 5 tenants can't fit in? Letting tenants agree with previous tenants what the move-in date is? Worrying about whether they have paid their bills or not and changing meters over? (A reply to a previous post from SlyRubies established that the landlord has no liability for tenants' bills).
      I appreciate you come to this Forum for advice - you need to make a few choices - do you really need this aggro? Are you prepared to go by the book next time and not be told 'the way it's going to be' by your tenant? Would you be better off going through an agency who won't get themselves tied up in the sort of knots you seem to manage?


        Do you think it is a good idea to paste peoples personal details onto a public website accusing them of things?

        Hope they don;t get to see this site or they will be taking some more money out of your pocket.
        NOTE: Steven Palmer BSc (Hons) MRICS MBEng is an official LandlordZONE Topic Expert and a Director of Davisons Palmer Lim Any advice given by Steven in this Forum is of a general nature only and should not be acted upon without first obtaining advice specific to your problem/situation from a professional.


          If you go ahead with this you may as well bend over and offer yourself to them. With jam on top.

          This won't be the end if they get their own way here. You need to be strong here and say no. They are living in [b]YOUR[/] property. How can you even consider letting them dictate terms to you?

          Get rid now.


            My response would be

            "Dear loosers

            Heres your section 8.

            Please enjoy the next 6 years in CCJville

            Good Bye"


              ok thanks, their blackmail is based on a very long list of complaints, which we have mostly discounted, but nevertheless I would prefer to avoid a court battle and move on with getting replacement tenants who will be paying a higher rent (since the property has been significantly improved since the current tenants moved in).

              I will try and get them out as fast as possible on a friendly basis if possible WITHOUT giving up my rights to pursue them for the original agreement.

              I do much appreciate the advice from you all. Apologies for the length of the post and my obvious inexperience as a landlord!

              Thanks again all, your responses have given me much ammunition, all fantastic stuff.


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