T painted/recarpeted; L now wishes to end tenancy

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    T painted/recarpeted; L now wishes to end tenancy

    New here,
    Our LL let a house through an agency to us on a long term let. They live abroad. We took it on asking if we could paint (very dated old house) as were looking for a long term situation. They agreed, all in writing.
    We waited nearly a year to see if they would come back/up rent etc as been stung before.
    We called in September and asked if we could paint and put a basic new carpet down, but only if they could assure us that they had no plans to sell in near future.
    All fine - we worked hard and updated the place which we were happy with.
    They came back early Jan and said nice job, thanks we are selling. Okay bit harsh but its not viable for them to keep it on as not making enough money for them.

    Now - we feel a bit cheated though understand may have no leg to stand on.

    The house was dirty and smelly when we moved in, we cleaned it ourselves. There is no double glazing which was to be looked at, and we reported the oven (circa 1920) as it was heating the house not the food, no loft insulation at all so bills are high but we make sure we only have it on when necessary.

    We have been asked to have it professionally cleaned which in our area costs in excess of £250 standered.

    We wnat to come to some arangement with the LL as we can deep clean it ourselves inc hiring a HSS carpet cleaner (we did this before) and not pay the £250. Considering we just paid out £300 for the house on their word of not returning in near future.

    The letting agent agrees we have improved the property.

    Whats the best way to approach this and do you deem it fair to clean ourselves rather than pay a company.

    #2
    There's no obligation to have it 'professionally' cleaned (see many other posts on this). You are only obliged to return the premises in the same condition as at the beginning. I suspect the agent didn't amend the TA as they were too lazy to remove it, or didn't know that such a clause is unenforceable.

    It depends on what documentation there is from the commencement of your tenancy as to its condition (i.e. inventory) then, as to what it is like now.
    The advice I give should not be construed as a definitive answer, and is without prejudice or liability. You are advised to consult a specialist solicitor or other person of equal legal standing.

    Comment


      #3
      Originally posted by Paul_f View Post
      There's no obligation to have it 'professionally' cleaned (see many other posts on this). You are only obliged to return the premises in the same condition as at the beginning. I suspect the agent didn't amend the TA as they were too lazy to remove it, or didn't know that such a clause is unenforceable.
      Read that as 'potentially unenforceable'. The obligation is valid but open to challenge on the grounds of:
      a. uncertainty; or
      b. the OFT guidelines.
      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


        #4
        It is inadvisable for tenants to decorate landlords’ properties. Tenants feel aggrieved when asked to vacate or are evicted soon after. Please in future rent properties in good decorative order or (if you can be bothered with the hassle and/or believe in promises) have your prospective landlord agree in writing to decorate using their own resources before you take sign the tenancy agreement.

        Also, why did you accept a property that was dirty and smelly when you moved in? The vast majority of landlords take a great deal of care in presenting their properties well.

        You need to examine prospective properties more carefully to avoid disappointment.

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by 22mitzy View Post
          New here,
          Our LL let a house through an agency to us on a long term let. They live abroad. We took it on asking if we could paint (very dated old house) as were looking for a long term situation. They agreed, all in writing.
          Bit confused here

          If you had a long term let in writing then surely this means you a let period of say 2 years - in which case they can't ask you to leave.

          Out of interest I've tenant who's done up rented house( decorated & carpeted). We agreed to alter AST period fron 6 months to 2 years.

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by bullybantam View Post
            Bit confused here

            If you had a long term let in writing then surely this means you a let period of say 2 years - in which case they can't ask you to leave.

            .
            I think OP means the LL agreed in writing to let them re-carpet and decorate.
            '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


              #7
              Originally posted by 22mitzy View Post

              We have been asked to have it professionally cleaned which in our area costs in excess of £250 standered.

              We wnat to come to some arangement with the LL as we can deep clean it ourselves inc hiring a HSS carpet cleaner (we did this before) and not pay the £250. Considering we just paid out £300 for the house on their word of not returning in near future.

              The letting agent agrees we have improved the property.

              Whats the best way to approach this and do you deem it fair to clean ourselves rather than pay a company.
              Yes, perfectly fair, the most LL can expect is to have the property returned in reasonably clean order. It also sounds like this isn't even a provision in the tenancy agreement. I would simply refuse to have it professionally cleaned - if LL disputes this and it ends up in deposit scheme arbitration or court, then it's highly likely you would win. Take extensive photos of the property just before you leave, to ensure you have evidence that you left the property in good order.

              Like Poppy I'm a bit mystified as to why you chose to rent a dirty smelly house in the first place; and I suggest that in future you ask to see the energy performance certificate before signing the contract - this will give you information on insulation and fuel efficiency etc.

              As for your improvements, TBH I don't think £300 is a huge investment over the course of a year or more, (there was a post on here from a T in a similar situation who'd spent thousands) and as you had no written agreement for LL to reimburse you, and only a verbal 'assurance' that LL had no plans to sell, you should have been aware that you were taking a risk.

              Comment

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