Landlord defaults on mortagage

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    Landlord defaults on mortagage

    Hi every one!

    This question may have been ask before, but here goes.

    I have a friend who is renting a flat in a block. He came home to find all his electric off. He called the agent who said the problem is between him and the landlord, as they only found a tenant for the landlord. The landlord has not been quick to reply to this issue, so my friend called the company supplying the electric who charged a call out fee and connection.

    The past three days his freezer has been off and food wasted. I think he has not bought content insurance. He has also learnt the landlord has not paid the mortgage, for a number of months. He is due to pay rent at the end of the month, but feels the banks are in the process of repossessing the flat.

    Last time a problem raised it’s head he deducted it from the rent, having notified the landlord in advance.

    How can he recover his money?

    He has signed a contract for three years; can he get compensation, as he will be homeless if forced out?

    How long can he stay in the flat legally?

    Thanks in advance!

    #2
    Originally posted by FRESH View Post
    I have a friend who is renting a flat in a block. He came home to find all his electric off. He called the agent who said the problem is between him and the landlord, as they only found a tenant for the landlord. The landlord has not been quick to reply to this issue, so my friend called the company supplying the electric who charged a call out fee and connection.

    The past three days his freezer has been off and food wasted.
    Why was the electricity turned off? Who turned it off? Is your friend responsible for paying the electricity bills and if so, has he paid?

    He has also learnt the landlord has not paid the mortgage, for a number of months. He is due to pay rent at the end of the month, but feels the banks are in the process of repossessing the flat.
    Rent is still due to the landlord until your friend is informed otherwise.

    How can he recover his money?
    What money?

    He has signed a contract for three years; can he get compensation, as he will be homeless if forced out?
    If he is evicted, he will be given ample notice. I do not think he would be entitled to any compensation if evicted via the proper legal procedure.

    How long can he stay in the flat legally?
    Until he is lawfully evicted.

    Comment


      #3
      Thank you for your reply!

      It was an electrical fault. He paid for it to be fixed so he wants the money refunded.

      He has always paid the rent upfront, but having dealt with his LL before he doesn’t want to incur that loss.

      Thanks

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by FRESH View Post

        He has signed a contract for three years; can he get compensation, as he will be homeless if forced out?
        What compo is he wanting? A landlord who can't pay his mortgage, won't be paying a compo claim.

        Tell your mate to look for a place to live now, as it looks like he will need to sooner or later.
        Allow tenants to protect their own deposits. I want free money when they do it wrong

        Comment


          #5
          Hello Everyone,

          I am the friend above with the landlord problems.

          To fill you in, there are really two problems here, an immediate electrical problem and a longer-term eviction problem.

          The electricity in the flat was turned off for safety reasons by the electric company without warning because the neighbours had reported receiving electric shocks from radiators etc. This happened because the landlord is extremely dodgy and did a cowboy job on the flat's wiring, earthing everything to pipes. In order to get the power turned on I had to call out a private electrician (at my expense) to inspect the flat's wiring. He partially disabled the flat's electricity disabling the lights and most sockets which made the flat safe and allowed the electric company to restore power. However, I only have partial power (and no lighting) so the flat is thus barely habitable right now. The landlord has told me to pay for repairs myslef and take it off next month's rent, but as there probably will not be a next month's rent (see below) I am reluctant to do this. He does not reply to phone calls or emails.

          The longer term problem is that I have received a letter from lawyer's representing the landlord's mortgage company informing me that the flat is being re-possessed and that I should "find alternative accomodation immediately". Thus it is extremely unlikely that the landlord will pay for any repair work on the flat. I have received no communication from the landlord regarding this repossession.

          I rented the flat through an agency, but the flat is privately managed by the landlord. I signed a 3 year contract with a 15month break clause, I have been there 5 months. I have contacted the agency who have agreeed in principle to find me a new flat, but it's unclear at present exactly how this will work in terms of contracts, deposits etc and when I can or have to move out.

          I believe the flat is not in a habitable condition at present and that repair work will not be done, thus I would like to move out asap. As I understand it, legally the flat has to be deemed uninhabitable for 1 month (as judged by the landlord, incredibly!!) before I am allowed to break the contract and move out. Until these pigs fly, I am obliged to put up with the lack of electricity and cannot move out until I receieve an eviction notice.

          It seems grossly unfair that I have to wait to be served with an evicition notice (which will effectively break the contract) and cannot break the contract myself by leaving early. I would welcome comments on this.

          I would also like to know whether I am entitled to compensation from the agency and what they are obliged to do. Clearly the landlord has no money and pursuing him would be futile. The agency are keen to wash their hands of this and are basically saying that all issues are between me and the landlord. Surely this is not correct? I paid a hefty fee to the agency when I moved in, with the understanding that they had properly vetted their landlords. Surely they cannot now throw their hands in the air?

          Thanks for any help and advice you can offer.

          Comment


            #6
            The agents aren't obliged to do anything for you. Forget about breaking contracts.

            Find somewhere else to live. Sharpish
            Allow tenants to protect their own deposits. I want free money when they do it wrong

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by hirudo View Post
              However, I only have partial power (and no lighting) so the flat is thus barely habitable right now. The landlord has told me to pay for repairs myslef and take it off next month's rent, but as there probably will not be a next month's rent (see below) I am reluctant to do this. He does not reply to phone calls or emails.
              I don't think having no lighting is enough to make the property uninhabitable per se as there are temporary measures you could use such as candles; you could probably claim compensation from the LL for the period without lighting. Having said that, do you have heating, hot water, and cooking facilities?

              The longer term problem is that I have received a letter from lawyer's representing the landlord's mortgage company informing me that the flat is being re-possessed and that I should "find alternative accomodation immediately". Thus it is extremely unlikely that the landlord will pay for any repair work on the flat. I have received no communication from the landlord regarding this repossession.
              I have almost no knowledge of how repossession works, but I do know there is a new Act protecting unauthorised tenants (you may be one) when a property is repossessed -
              see http://blog.painsmith.co.uk/2010/07/...ng-into-force/

              I believe the flat is not in a habitable condition at present and that repair work will not be done, thus I would like to move out asap. As I understand it, legally the flat has to be deemed uninhabitable for 1 month (as judged by the landlord, incredibly!!) before I am allowed to break the contract and move out.
              Who told you this; someone down the pub? Ask the environmental health officer at the council to inspect.

              I would also like to know whether I am entitled to compensation from the agency and what they are obliged to do.
              Your contract is with the landlord, not the agent. You have no grounds to take action against or seek compensation from the agent, and they have no obligation to "do" anything.

              Comment


                #8
                L does have an inescapable duty re installations for mains electricity supply [s.11 of LTA 1985] but not for consumer equipment.
                So the lack of mains power is definitely L's problem. Is the lighting failure a mains issue or a light-bulb issue?
                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


                  #9
                  Originally posted by jeffrey View Post
                  Is the lighting failure a mains issue or a light-bulb issue?
                  Neither: the problem is a dodgy wiring job within the flat which is causing electric shocks to the neighbours. The mains supply is on, but the dodgy circuits, including the lights, have been disabled for safety reasons and need to be repaired by a professional electrician. The landlord will not pay for this.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by westminster View Post

                    Who told you this; someone down the pub? Ask the environmental health officer at the council to inspect.

                    Actually, it was the agency.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by thesaint View Post
                      The agents aren't obliged to do anything for you. Forget about breaking contracts.

                      Find somewhere else to live. Sharpish
                      I am still not clear about my rights. I have receievd a letter from laywers representing the mortgagee advising me to leave, but they do not yet have an eviction notice. The line from the agents seems to be that I am not allowed to leave before I get the eviction notice, despite the dodgy electrics. This is a problem, because I have paid a month's rent up front that I need to get back so I can't just drop everything and run out the door. I need to be sure that my advance rent will be repaid before moving out.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        It is not the 'right' thing to do, but I would stop paying rent in order to recover any money owed to you.

                        By doing this, you can not be sumarily evicted, the landlord, or the mortgage company, will have to get a court order to evict you.

                        I'd only give you a 50/50 chance of getting your deposit back - so another reason to stop the rent.

                        The letter from the lenders solicitor is, at this stage, just a frightner to try and get you to leave voluntarily so that they don't have to go to court for possession once the have re-possessed from the landlord.

                        Does the landlord own the whole block?

                        Comment

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