Our landlord seems not to own the house- is that OK?

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  • Our landlord seems not to own the house- is that OK?

    Hi

    Will give you a bit of background first:

    I posted on here in Feb about our current rental property having mould, poor heating and being unfit for habitation.

    We have decided to move out of our current house which we have signed a 12 month AST (7 months into this), we are supposed to give 2 months notice but have written to the LL and asked for a mutual surrender of the tenancy, we also did not pay the rent at the end of dec as the LL has not secured our deposit in a goverment backed scheme.

    The letter stating our intention was sent before xmas and we heard nothing by new year so I called his office to speak to him and was told that he was away till the middle of Jan but he was ok with us leaving the property. We have still not heard from him, should I try and contact him again?

    Also a friend of mine has done a search and found out that the guy we thought is our LL and the owner of the house does not own the property, does this mean that our LL is just an agent even though we found the house through another agent? he is also down as the LL on the tenancy agreement?

    When we moved into the property we were asked by our LL to keep mail addressed to a certain person as they are renting another of his properties but this turns out to be the property owner. Not sure if this has any bearing as we are requesting our deposit returned and if its not we will claim through the courts as it has not been protected? Also we are concerned as we think that this is a bit dodgy, what does any one else think?

    Cheers

    Matt

  • #2
    I should add that I have now done a Land reg search my self and it does show that the guy we have been told to keep mail for is the owner of the property. Any help on the above questions would be great.

    Cheers

    Comment


    • #3
      You do not necessarily need to be the owner of the property to be the landlord. The owner of the property could have rented out to someone (with permission to sub-let) and your landlord may actually be this tenant, therefore making you sub-tenants.
      It is strange however that the owner's mail is still arriving at your address.

      Comment


      • #4
        Plus land registry aint the quickest to update their records, sometimes changes in ownership don't show for up to 6 months!
        My views and posts are based on my opinion and any advice given is just that, advice. If you decide to act on any advice given it is with the full knowledge that I am not perfect and anything I say could be wrong!

        Comment


        • #5
          Or it could simply be a case that the person who acts as your landlord infact has a virtual freehold of the property for say 150 years. In truth it doesn't actually affect you.

          Additionally is it you that has assumed the property is unfit for habitation or did you actually get a surveyor in to say this? I'd also ask for LL's corgi test cert if its gas fired central heating. I'd be quite nervous to exit a property based on verbal agreements alone.
          [I]The opinions I give are simply my opinions and interpretations of what I have learnt, in numerous years as a property professional, I would not rely upon them without consulting with a paid advisor and providing them with all the relevant facts[I]

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Sorrel View Post
            Plus land registry aint the quickest to update their records, sometimes changes in ownership don't show for up to 6 months!
            Not so. Once an application arrives there, the usual turn-round time is 2 or 3 working days (although, if a new registered title is involved, the default estimate is always 'five weeks'). It's very rare that an application takes six months!
            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


            • #7
              Originally posted by Sorrel View Post
              Plus land registry aint the quickest to update their records, sometimes changes in ownership don't show for up to 6 months!
              That can only be because of a failure to apply for registration or because something was wrong with the application.

              Comment


              • #8
                Hi

                we have been in the property for the last 7 months and the previous tenants were here 6 months before that with the same ll, I do not think this is a case of the Land registry not having updated their records.

                If we sub-tenants would this not be on the AST?

                Also who should we take to court when we are claiming for the return of the deposit, the LL or property owner?

                I am worried that something is not right, I mean who else has a LL who does not at least call a tenant when rent is not paid?

                Cheers

                Matt

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Matt1981 View Post
                  Hi

                  If we sub-tenants would this not be on the AST?

                  Also who should we take to court when we are claiming for the return of the deposit, the LL or property owner?
                  I don't think there should be any difference for the AST even if you are sub-tenants - but i am sure someone with more knowledge can tell you for sure.

                  You should claim your deposit from the LL (whoever you had the contract with). Wasn't the deposit held in a scheme? You should have the necessary details of how to claim it from there.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Lawcruncher View Post
                    That can only be because of a failure to apply for registration or because something was wrong with the application.
                    So as i stated sometimes they dont show up for a long period of time, I am only going on the last instance that i carried out a land registry search. The change of ownership hadnt occurred from the time i carried out the first one (17/10/08) to yesterday. After speaking to a nice and slightly apologetic young lady at the land registry she informed me that there are occurrences of the transfers taking longer. Like with any large company things get lost...I didn't state that every land registry takes 6 months to transfer.
                    My views and posts are based on my opinion and any advice given is just that, advice. If you decide to act on any advice given it is with the full knowledge that I am not perfect and anything I say could be wrong!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I bought a place on 31/10/08 and it still has not showed up, so he is correct. It sometimes does happen

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by LandlordLee View Post
                        I bought a place on 31/10/08 and it still has not showed up, so he is correct. It sometimes does happen
                        Well, ask your solicitor why not. More likely, he/she is still awaiting form SDLT5 from HMRC and therefore has not yet applied to HMLR.

                        I mean, have a heart. HMLR cannot register anything without an Application received. They're good but not that good!
                        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


                        • #13
                          So it does not matter that our Land lord is not the property owner, was just worried as he has been the property landlord for over a year and refers to the house as being his. We still receive a lot of mail for the registered property owner, can see that these are bank statements and credit card statements and also a letter from a mortgage company. We also receive a lot of calls asking after the property owner. Thought it may all point to fraud of some sort?!

                          Should I call our LL again or wait until he contacts us about us terminating our tenancy and returning our deposit? Think its a bit weird that we owe a months rent and this dont seem to be bothering him.

                          Cheers

                          Matt

                          Comment

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