Deposit funds have gone missing TWICE!

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    #31
    I do not believe that they will ask for the deposit back knowing full well that it has not cleared their accounts. Besides I thought they could only ask for their deposit back directly from the DPS, as that is who they paid.

    I can't think of many people who miss an amount in excess of £1000 going from their account. They simply aren't that silly. However, it is the threat that they seem to think that by accepting one cheque made payable to the DPS which they have confirmed they have cancelled and was written out over 1 year ago, thereby rendering it useless anwyay, we are therefore liable for not protecting their deposit and can be sued for 3x an amount we can prove we have never had. Am I missing something here?

    Certainly, I can say, I will never take a deposit in cheque form again, short of a bankers' draft, and will not allow the tenant into the property or sign the contract until such monies have been paid.

    I honestly believed that the whole point of Deposit Protection Schemes, was that unscrupulous landlords could not get their grubby hands on the funds at any time themselves and to prevent deposits being withheld unfairly. In this belief I was partially mistaken. What appears to be the case is that the landlord can insist that the deposit is paid in cash, or bankers draft directly to him and then can, in practice, do whatever he likes with regard to the deposit, but that not placing these funds in a deposit scheme would be an illegal act and will leave him open to legal action and the possible penalty of 3x deposit being payable back to the tenant, which they would have to chase through the courts.

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      #32
      Originally posted by cazbym View Post
      I did not sign an agreement that a deposit had been paid. Their tenancy agreement simple states that a deposit is payable.
      The agreement will state that the deposit is payable on or before the date they take up occupation.

      You need to find varification via email/letter that the deposit was taken by cheque. Your requests to send the deposit to the DPS. Confirmation that the tenant have posted the cheque etc. A letter from your bank to state that a cheque has not ben deposited into your account between the date requested to the present date.

      I would also impress to the tenant that should an administration error have occured with DPS then that is their responsibility assuming that you registered the deposit within the specified time scale.

      re the property and the boiler - you should not instruct anyone to touch the boiler other than a qualified/insured gas safe engineer. You would not get many tenants agree to live and pay rent in a property should the hot water supply be off for that amount of time. Did you speak to the engineer who visited the property and get a full report from him? If your tenant or his wife had been killed as a result of the fault then the implications for yourself could be as he stated.

      Does you tenant intend to sue you or is he threatening you to release them from the contract?

      Comment


        #33
        Originally posted by cazbym View Post
        Certainly, I can say, I will never take a deposit in cheque form again, short of a bankers' draft, and will not allow the tenant into the property or sign the contract until such monies have been paid.

        Bankers drafts can be canceled

        I honestly believed that the whole point of Deposit Protection Schemes, was that unscrupulous landlords could not get their grubby hands on the funds at any time themselves and to prevent deposits being withheld unfairly. In this belief I was partially mistaken. What appears to be the case is that the landlord can insist that the deposit is paid in cash, or bankers draft directly to him and then can, in practice, do whatever he likes with regard to the deposit, but that not placing these funds in a deposit scheme would be an illegal act and will leave him open to legal action and the possible penalty of 3x deposit being payable back to the tenant, which they would have to chase through the courts.
        There are other schemes which do not hold the deposits - some LL/TT prepare DPS as deposit is held by a third party - in the future I suggest you take cash/or cheque (5 days prior to move in and bank to clear in time) then debit the monies to DPS straight away.

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          #34
          Originally posted by Springfields View Post
          There are other schemes which do not hold the deposits - some LL/TT prepare DPS as deposit is held by a third party - in the future I suggest you take cash/or cheque (5 days prior to move in and bank to clear in time) then debit the monies to DPS straight away.
          Many thanks for the advice. I was not aware bankers' drafts could be cancelled. I will certainly go that way in future.

          The man in question, not his wife, is I believe, not intending to rip me off, but punish me for something I have not done, and prove himself right every step of the way. My main reason for posting to this forum has been to hear other people's views on both his manner and reasoning. There is also the question of the windows which I am quite concerned about. My communications with him have never been rude or officious or long winded, unlike this thread!! But that is what he is accusing me of being by requesting a formal notice to end the tenancy and asking him to check that his deposit has cleared his account. Because we simply can't be there to take out the windows for him and have requested that he makes sure the person doing it is experienced and insured, he is saying he is going to deduct more money for this. Surely, this cannot be right?

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            #35
            Originally posted by cazbym View Post
            The man in question, not his wife, is I believe, not intending to rip me off, but punish me for something I have not done, and prove himself right every step of the way. My main reason for posting to this forum has been to hear other people's views on both his manner and reasoning. There is also the question of the windows which I am quite concerned about. My communications with him have never been rude or officious or long winded, unlike this thread!! But that is what he is accusing me of being by requesting a formal notice to end the tenancy and asking him to check that his deposit has cleared his account. Because we simply can't be there to take out the windows for him and have requested that he makes sure the person doing it is experienced and insured, he is saying he is going to deduct more money for this. Surely, this cannot be right?

            If you removed the windows at the start of the tenancy at no cost and are now expecting him to remove them at his cost at the end of the tenancy, knowing that this is the only way to get his furniture then yes.

            Personally I'd arrange a date to remove the windows and have done with him and the tenancy, too much has gone wrong.

            Comment


              #36
              Originally posted by Springfields View Post
              The agreement will state that the deposit is payable on or before the date they take up occupation.
              I will have to double check the original agreement regarding that, but idiotic as it may seem, I considered a cheque made payable to the DPS as paid, but this can easily be proved to be not the case.

              Originally posted by Springfields View Post
              You need to find varification via email/letter that the deposit was taken by cheque. Your requests to send the deposit to the DPS. Confirmation that the tenant have posted the cheque etc. A letter from your bank to state that a cheque has not ben deposited into your account between the date requested to the present date.
              I think if you read my previous posts showing his emails to me, you will see that he has stated that he handed over one cheque payable to the DPS, and that the second was posted by his wife. I have copies of all emails sent to me and my replies to him. I cannot get confirmation that the second cheque was posted or cleared as this is in his hands and not mine. Incidentally, there will be A cheque in my account for the exact same sum, which was the 1st month's rental, but it would obviously be for a different cheque number.

              Originally posted by Springfields View Post
              I would also impress to the tenant that should an administration error have occured with DPS then that is their responsibility assuming that you registered the deposit within the specified time scale.
              Again, as shown in previous posts, the tenant is refusing to communicate with me at all at the moment and by the time I have taken adequate advice, he will have left the property.

              Originally posted by Springfields View Post
              re the property and the boiler - you should not instruct anyone to touch the boiler other than a qualified/insured gas safe engineer. You would not get many tenants agree to live and pay rent in a property should the hot water supply be off for that amount of time. Did you speak to the engineer who visited the property and get a full report from him? If your tenant or his wife had been killed as a result of the fault then the implications for yourself could be as he stated.
              Surely this depends what you mean by touch the boiler. They have indeed taken that sentence literally. Do you mean top the water up, clear the condensate pipe into the drain of ice outside the property, (literally break off the ice that was blocking it), or press the reset button, as this is what we did. No seals were broken, much to the frustration of our friend, who although he could have removed the casing and immediately seen the ongoing problem, was unable to do so, due to the regulations. We categorically, did not instruct anybody to carry out any repairs or interfere with the workings of the boiler with the above exceptions. We also checked with Ideal Boilers that these actions were within the law and they agreed. However, the tenants' take on this, is that an "engineer" came out and declared the boiler safe. What actually happened is that we (clearly identified as not gas engineers and unable to do much) came out, managed to restart the boiler and said it seemed to be working. He is even correctly referred to in the emails above by the tenant as a plumber.

              Whilst, I personally do not agree that a tenant should not pay rent whilst a boiler is not working, provided everything is being legally and safely done by the landlord to correct the matter, (nobody pays my mortgage when my boiler breaks down), I DO accept that they can claim for the inconvenience. This was not done, they simply sent me a rude text, which I do not have a copy of, stating that they would not be paying the full rent and this is what they did, which I believe is not legal. I did not argue or respond and decided to take it on the chin. The man was clearly upset and frustrated at the thought of his very poorly wife living in a house without proper central heating and proper hot water.


              Originally posted by Springfields View Post
              Does you tenant intend to sue you or is he threatening you to release them from the contract?
              No, I do not believe he will sue me, and he is not asking us to release him from the contract. What he is doing is name-calling, albeit politely, making false accusations, which have now escalated from using a non CORGI registered engineer (I know that it's GAS SAFE now), to now stating that we have REPEATEDLY used unqualified engineers. Aside from restarting the boiler on the Saturday, the boiler was visited on the Tuesday by Ideal Engineers under our maintenance contract, and finally repaired after endless visits which included a new Heat Exchanger, 2 new PCBs one of which I provided myself from the local Heat Replacement Center and several other parts, each one of which was not identified until the previous one had been replaced. The Ideal Engineer who called on the Tuesday, stated that they could have died from carbon monoxide poisoning and demanded to know whether the last person to work on the boiler was Gas Safe registered to which I replied in the affirmative. The previous engineer had replaced a diverter valve some months prior to this particular tenancy. It did not occur to me that he was referring to the Saturday visit. We did ask Ideal to keep on record all comments and reports with regard to the boiler and also told the engineer not to speak to the tenants directly, as the information was misleading and upsetting. This was back in February, at which point the tenants had threatened to sue us, but we were completely confident that nothing illegal had taken place and could prove it. Although we did ask for a copy of the report from the engineer, we did not receive it, but the details are still on record. This new heat exchanger, we were told wold take 11 days to source. We vigorously attacked Ideal and said that this was not acceptable, as the tenant was unwell and eventually they sourced one from elsewhere and arrived on the Thursday with the engineer who had declared the boiler dangerous to fit the new one, which he did. However if memory serves me correctly the boiler could still not be rendered safe as a pipe needed repairing. A gentleman arrived on the Saturday fitted the part and tested the boiler. All seemed well. He went to put the cover on and asked who had fitted the heat exchanger. I explained that the Ideal Engineer had just fitted the hex 2 days previously. He immediately stated that the hex had been fitted incorrectly and declared the boiler unsafe!! At least 3 more engineers visited before the hex was taken out and correctly installed, at which point the boiler was declared safe. This took a total of some 10 working days. 4 or 5 months further down the line our own gas engineer arrived to carry out the annual safety check, took one look at the boiler and declared it unsafe! Rather than apportion blame and fight with Ideal immediately, we thought that it would be best to simply fit another boiler as soon as possible and leave it to another day to fight Ideal. The boiler was declared potentially unsafe on Wednesday 10th, and a new boiler was up and running for hot water on Wednesday 17th although not fully commissioned, due to wiring set up for underfloor heating. It was fully commissioned yesterday.

              Comment


                #37
                Originally posted by Springfields View Post
                If you removed the windows at the start of the tenancy at no cost and are now expecting him to remove them at his cost at the end of the tenancy, knowing that this is the only way to get his furniture then yes.

                Personally I'd arrange a date to remove the windows and have done with him and the tenancy, too much has gone wrong.
                It is the date that is the problem. He has only given 6 days notice of this date and my husband who carried out this work himself and really does not want anyone else to touch the property, with it being a listed building simply cannot be there. The earliest he can be about is the 5th September. His wife had previously stated that they would leave the larger items until we could attend, which we were happy with.

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                  #38
                  Having ploughed through the entire thread I am beginning to have some sympathy for this tenant.
                  '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

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                    #39
                    Originally posted by mind the gap View Post
                    I am beginning to have some sympathy for the tenant.
                    I certainly had a great deal of sympathy for the tenant especially his wife (and myself) with regard to the boiler, which was quite frankly farcical. I had to spend a day at hospital whilst my sister underwent a major cancer operation and at the same time, keep running out to check engineers had turned up. On one occasion I had to drive from one side of the city to the other with my sister in her bedclothes to get a circuit board to an Ideal Engineer who did not carry one, as he had agreed to wait 30 mins for me, but who still could not get it working. Both couples were exhausted after the end of it. And I have sympathy for you trying to read all this twaddle. However, it cannot be said that I did anything illegal or put their lives in danger. And I have done everything within my power to make them comfortable. They absolutely love the house and I believe that they were still planning to buy it. They are piqued that we were about to give them notice.

                    I am happy to arrange the removal of the windows at no cost to him, but cannot do it with 6 days notice, which has changed by 1 day since his original email. Even 14 days notice would have sufficed.

                    What should I do? Let him remove the windows himself? Let him pay whatever he feels is correct, when he feels he should? I only want the rent minus reasonable compensation. Nothing more. He has not paid any rent this month. This really is not a facetious question. I am exceedingly angry at being accused of flouting the law and putting lives at risk and additionally being told that I must pay for the removal of my own windows for him to leave the property. Every single engineer who has attended the property has said that he is exceedingly pleasant as I believed him to be, but has later changed their mind having seen his emails.

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                      #40
                      You have asked for opinions and have been provided with them.

                      If you disagree and believe the let has been conducted to the letter of the law and you are not in error, I suggest you start legal proceding to recover outstanding rent owed and the rent owing up until the offical move out date.

                      Comment


                        #41
                        Originally posted by Springfields View Post
                        You have asked for opinions and have been provided with them.

                        If you disagree and believe the let has been conducted to the letter of the law and you are not in error, I suggest you start legal proceding to recover outstanding rent owed and the rent owing up until the offical move out date.
                        I am very grateful for that advice and for the time taken to read these posts. I do realise and was expecting everyone to find this as tedious as I do. I appreciate that you are giving valid advice and have no incentive other than helpfulness to do so.

                        In addition to my own stupidity, over the deposit. I will admit that the let has not been conducted either to the letter of the law or to my own standards. I did not arrange an EPS prior to the tenancy (did not even know that they existed!) and failed to arrange a replacement for a damaged and stair carpet within 1 month of being reported. I completely forgot about it.

                        I have no intention of starting legal proceedings at this point, hoping that I will never have to. I am past caring about how much money we receive. But do care very much about the rights and wrongs of the situation.

                        My intention when posting on this forum was to sound other people out about the correctness of the tenant's position, and what I could do about his accusations. All I have done so far is bite my lip and wear it. Which is what I think you have advised me is what I should do anyway.

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                          #42
                          Tenant has just emailed to ask if husband can attend at 9 a.m. tomorrow morning to remove windows. (Visited tenant on Monday morning to offer removal but it was refused). Cannot get in touch with husband on mobile. What now? Any suggestions?

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