T wants to leave early and withholding rent

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    T wants to leave early and withholding rent

    Hi

    I got a fairly new tenant and he wants to leave because he thinks the property is dirty and in his mind not fit to live in. He's only been there for about 2 weeks and is threatening legal action to claim compensation for stress caused by him having to clean the place.

    The property was cleaned prior to him moving in but obviously not to his standards. I recalled the cleaners to re-clean and he was still not happy.

    He is now intending to withhold rent as compensation and wants to leave before his minimum term of 6 months. He is intending to seek legal advice on the matter.

    Does T have the right to withhold rent and leave early without compensating the LL?

    Thanks in advance.

    #2
    Tenant has no right to withold rent - full stop.

    Even if he leaves, you could, technically, hold him responsible for the full value of the contract.

    I can not see any court awarding him anything for the 'stress' of cleaning a place - especially when you show the court the invoice from the cleaners!

    However, I think it would be best if you agreed to allow the tenant to surrender his tenancy in exchange for the payment of any outstanding rent, this will allow you to re-let the place to someone who will be willing to pay the rent.

    Comment


      #3
      I agree with Snorkerz, but make sure T leaves the place clean. It always amazes me that tenants who complain most about my cleaning standards leave places filthy!
      To save them chiming in, JPKeates, Theartfullodger, Boletus, Mindthegap, Macromia, Holy Cow & Ted.E.Bear think the opposite of me on almost every subject.

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        #4
        The cleaning was done to a good standard, but T insists it was substandard. Not sure what planet he is on. I'm doing all I can to calm him down and rectify things but he wants to pursue matters via legal means.

        I've got no problems for him to leave. In fact the sooner the better because I can do without this hassle. The problem is that he believes he is not liable to pay a penny in compensation for my letting agent fees or the minimum 6 months break. His AST is a 12 month contract. He has paid one months rent so far.

        The question is after his month is up do I allow him to leave, return his deposit and take the loss for the the agent fees?

        Thanks in advance.

        Comment


          #5
          I think it is fair if T pays for time he is in residence plus any letting fees (from deposit if necessary.)
          To save them chiming in, JPKeates, Theartfullodger, Boletus, Mindthegap, Macromia, Holy Cow & Ted.E.Bear think the opposite of me on almost every subject.

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by jamesknight0 View Post
            I think it is fair if T pays for time he is in residence plus any letting fees (from deposit if necessary.)
            I agree that that is fair - however the T may not be willing to agree to those terms (indeed, from the sound of it won't). In which case, T might remain in property, not paying rent, until he is evicted by a court order. I think letting him go and losing a few hundred in letting fees is preferable to not gettig any rent for the next five months.

            Comment


              #7
              Hmm, but would o/p have to spell out his terms before tenant moves out? Hint, hint.
              To save them chiming in, JPKeates, Theartfullodger, Boletus, Mindthegap, Macromia, Holy Cow & Ted.E.Bear think the opposite of me on almost every subject.

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by tsu3000 View Post
                The question is after his month is up do I allow him to leave, return his deposit and take the loss for the the agent fees?
                No, why should you? Certainly do not return the deposit. T signed a binding contract. If you release him from the contract you should not be left out pocket. It's ridiculous for T to expect to get off scot free, let alone for you to pay him! Let him seek legal advice; we all know what they'll tell him. I suspect that it might be nothing to do with the cleaning and he's just decided he wants to live elsewhere.

                Is T employed?

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by Snorkerz View Post
                  I think letting him go and losing a few hundred in letting fees is preferable to not gettig any rent for the next five months.
                  Depends on whether he's working. If he is then ultimately you could get the unpaid rent back.

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