No heating- L's duty under s.11; effect on rent?

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    #31
    Given that she has hot water and that you have supplied her with alternative heating (although one heater doesn't sound a lot, how big is the property?) I think you have complied with your obligations under S11. A two week delay in getting a new boiler fitted is not unreasonable.

    Sounds like you are best rid of her; accept her surrender of the tenancy in writing, get her to sign it and let it to a more appreciative tenant once the new boiler is in.
    My advice is not based on formal legal training but experience gained in 20+ years in the letting industry.

    Comment


      #32
      Originally posted by dotturton@hotmail.co.uk View Post
      I rent a property to a single mother with 2 young childre. The combi boiler has been troublsome this year and costly to run. It broke down last week and I decided to replace it to ensure her not being without heat in the winter. The water is still being heated it's the central heating thats broken. I keft a halogen heater in the property. The earliest I can get a new one fitted is 2 weeks, therefore she has no heating for 2 weeks. She has told me she is moving out and given 2 weeks notice and with holding rent due to boiler. Can she do this? I felt I was doing the responsible thing by replacing it!

      I have been very supportive and allowed late payment and even let her off 1 month when her partner left her. I am in turmoil as I don't view mysef as a bad landlord and respond within hours of any repairs.

      Please advise
      If you have only provided one halogen heater for what is presumably a 2 bedroomed property, I can undertstand her frustration. It's cold at present, especially at night, and it would have been a good idea to invest in a convector heater for each room (approx £20 each from Argos) and offer her money towards the extra cost of electricity.

      Having said that, you are getting a new boiler and her reaction is in my view somewhat 'over the top' - she could have asked for more heaters, etc, before deciding to move out.

      I thought she could only withold rent if LL is doing nothing about the heating/not making every effort to get it sorted, but others may know better. I'm not sure, in the circumstances, and if you tried to sue her for the rent she owes, whether a judge would think you had done enough.

      Might be best to agree to end her tenancy officially and find replacement tenants as soon as boiler is installed?
      'Pause you who read this, and think for a moment of the long chain of iron or gold, of thorns or flowers, that would never have bound you, but for the formation fo the first link on one memorable day'. Charles Dickens, Great Expectations

      Comment


        #33
        As far as I'm aware (unless the property is unhabitable) there is NO reason to withhold rent, I agree with oaktree, might be best to surrender and get in a rent paying tenant.
        Any information given in this post or others is only MY opinion and based ONLY on my own personal experiences as a landlord. It is not, and will never be, a substitute for legal advice administered by a solicitor or other qualified persons..................... So don't sue me.

        Comment


          #34
          Sorry but its not that bloody cold! Another few weeks down the line maybe. But if she has hot water then she is OK for now.

          If she is chilly she should whack a jumper on! She should try having NO heating from March until December 22nd!! Now that's damn cold in a house that was HUGE! I used to wrap up so warm! And no-one would come babysit for me lol!

          SHe has no reason to get out, you are doing what you can and any Environmental Health officer will see that and tell her where to shove her ideas!
          GOVERNMENT HEALTH WARNING: I am a woman and am therefore prone to episodes of PMT... if you don't like what I have to say you can jolly well put it in your pipe and SMOKE IT!!

          Oh and on a serious note... I am NOT a Legal person and therefore anything I post could be complete and utter drivel... but its what I have learned in the University called Life!

          Comment


            #35
            1 months rent

            My opinion is this and after letting properties for ten years now i will categorically say that losing a bad tenant and one months rent is by far cheaper in the long run than trying constantly to please their every need. let them go and be thank full you didnt have to evict

            Comment


              #36
              Yes, let her go! What's the matter with people? I haven't turned my heating on yet this year. It's nowhere near the period when a house without heating is uninhabitable.

              Frankly she'll be lucky to find a landlord who treats her as well as you appear to have done. Perhaps she's using this as an excuse for a move she planned to make anyway? Is there a man involved??

              Comment


                #37
                Thanks

                Hi Everyone, many thanks for your supportive replies. She has now left the property which is in a filthy condition so in the process of replacing carpets and redecorating. I got a new tenant immediately who is over the moon with house and I have been able to secure the going rental rate rather than the reduced rate I charged the one who left. I have learnt a hard lesson and I will not be a soft touch ever again, she even took furniture belonging me! She is also spreading the word that I am a horrendous landlord who won't get repairs done!!! I have homecare cover therefore repairs never a problem!

                Comment


                  #38
                  No heating- L's duty under s.11; effect on rent?

                  Hi,

                  I'm privately renting an AST flat in London at the moment. There are two of us in the house currently. We moved in in early September, and the boiler hasn't ever worked!

                  British gas came out twice and told us it was sludge, which isnt covered on there call outs. We then told the landlord again, she said she had had a power flush last summer. She then sent over her plumber who said that if we didn't turn the thermostat over 2 the boiler would work, we didn't move the thermostat and once again it worked for a few hours then never came back on again. The next step is that Corgi have been called and visited they ruled that it definitely could not be sludge, British gas are due to come back next week.

                  We have had no heating for almost two months now, it is winter (it snowed here last night and the temperature in the house was 15 degrees!) and the house isn't double glazed = two freezing tenants! The LL provided us with one heater which doesn't work so we bought one ourselves.

                  We have paid the rent in spite of this, but we are thinking of asking for a rebate to cover the extra electricity costs from the heater and having the immersion heater on. Would we also be able to ask for a rent reduction whilst we haven't had any heating/hot water?

                  Wow such a long post! Any information would be so helpful as we do not want to breach our contract but do not want to end up out of pocket!

                  Thankyou all!

                  Comment


                    #39
                    L may be committing a criminal offence by failure to provide heating. See s.11 of LTA 1985.
                    JEFFREY SHAW, solicitor [and Topic Expert], Nether Edge Law*
                    1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
                    2. Telephone advice: see http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=34638.
                    3. For paid advice about conveyancing/leaseholds/L&T, contact me* and become a private client.
                    4. *- Contact info: click on my name (blue-highlight link).

                    Comment


                      #40
                      Originally posted by jeffrey View Post
                      L may be committing a criminal offence by failure to provide heating. See s.11 of LTA 1985.
                      All the section does is to imply covenants.

                      Comment


                        #41
                        Originally posted by Lawcruncher View Post
                        All the section does is to imply covenants.
                        That's true, of course. My last post was elliptical. Besides the covenants implied [s.11], and T's power to seek an Order for specific performance [s.17], L letting a house unheated may be committing criminal offence if it's therefore not fit for human habitation.
                        JEFFREY SHAW, solicitor [and Topic Expert], Nether Edge Law*
                        1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
                        2. Telephone advice: see http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=34638.
                        3. For paid advice about conveyancing/leaseholds/L&T, contact me* and become a private client.
                        4. *- Contact info: click on my name (blue-highlight link).

                        Comment


                          #42
                          Brrrrrrr!

                          I am sorry to learn that your heating is not working.

                          When you say "British gas are due to come back next week" are you basically expecting them to finally fix the boiler?

                          Have you told your landlord that the heater is not working?

                          Telephone your landlord about the non-working heater and that you have bought a working heater and that you intend to deduct that cost from your next month's rent payment. Back up the phone call with a letter to the landlord to inform her of your actions.

                          Keep communications open with your landlord. She doesn't sound like she is trying to shirk her responsibilities to you.

                          Comment


                            #43
                            Well I am hoping that they will be on their way to fixing it! but they have been twice before un-successfully, if they need to order parts that could be another 6 weeks yet!

                            We talk to our Landlord at least once or twice a week, she knows the heater isn't working, we told her the week we moved in. It just feels like it has been going on for way too long now, 9 weeks, whilst she brings all these different people in as well as the fact that she rented out the house with a boiler that wasn't working at all!

                            We therefore feel that it wouldn't be unreasonable for us to recoup our costs but have some sort of rent reduction for the time that we have had no heating. (we did write to her last week explaining our intention to do this once the boiler is fixed) Do others feel it to be reasonable and if so is there any guide for how much to ask for?

                            Thanks

                            Comment


                              #44
                              sorry that should be Recoup our costs AND, rather than but!

                              Comment


                                #45
                                If you had a working boiler, you would be paying the heating bills regardless. So to my mind, there is not much point in trying to reclaim the heating bills.

                                If you are seeking compensation, please tell us the level of compensation you are thinking of. Maybe then someone will respond to that with their opinion.

                                Comment

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