Missing rent/deposit dispute

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    Missing rent/deposit dispute

    Hi, please help me

    Last September I rented a room in a 10 bedroom house on an 11 month tenancy. I had to pay one months rent as deposit when I moved in plus £175 fee for things such as inventory list, standing orders, deposit schemes etc and I had to provide an individual rent guarantor.

    During the tenancy, my landlord was fairly difficult, she didn't reply to any emails/phonecalls left with her and didn't keep the house in a suitable condition (a freezer stopped working and she just ignored calls about it for example).

    When she did decided to sort an aspect of the property out, she'd turn up without notice and just let herself in.

    When I initially moved in, no inventory was completed and I wasn't provided with a copy of the tenancy agreement I signed.

    Due to these constant annoyances during my tenancy, I stopped my rent 3 months prior to completion of my tenancy. Recently, she has informed me that as it was a joint tenancy, she will take the missing rent out of my housemates deposits, something I want to avoid.

    I'm not sure it was a joint tenancy, several housemates had lived there for over a year prior to me and some joined the house later than me. When I signed a tenancy agreement, it did not specify the type of tenancy it was and there were no other names on the tenancy I signed.

    I have also contacted MyDeposits, who I was told the deposit would be protected with, and they have no record of it at all.

    Can she take the missing rent out of my housemates deposit or not? Could I possibly have a strong counter claim on her to force her to let the missing rent slide? Please help

    Thanks for any advice given

    #2
    If you are listed as the only tenant on the agreement you signed then obviously there is no joint tenancy.

    From what you said you have no justification for withholding rent...

    Comment


      #3
      On the ageement you signed, how was the property descrbed? Was it something like:

      Room 7, 25 Seymour Gardens, London; or just

      25 Seymour Gardens, London?

      Have you been rpovided with any information to indicate your deposit is in a government approved scheme,and if so, which one?

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by Big Fudge View Post
        Can she take the missing rent out of my housemates deposit or not?
        Not if you have an individual tenancy for your room (and it sounds like you do). But LL can claim for the unpaid rent against you and/or the guarantor.

        Could I possibly have a strong counter claim on her to force her to let the missing rent slide?
        On what basis? Nothing you have told us indicates that you have a claim against LL.

        Also note that, if you and the other tenants have individual contracts, you only have exclusive possession of your rooms, and the LL is entitled to enter the communal areas to make repairs.

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by Snorkerz View Post
          On the ageement you signed, how was the property descrbed? Was it something like:

          Room 7, 25 Seymour Gardens, London; or just

          25 Seymour Gardens, London?
          I can't remember and I can't check as I was never provided with my copy of the tenancy agreement which she told me I'd get

          Originally posted by Snorkerz View Post
          Have you been rpovided with any information to indicate your deposit is in a government approved scheme,and if so, which one?
          On the application form to rent a property with the landlord, it says she uses the MyDeposits scheme. However, I checked with MyDeposits using their online checker and they have no records for the deposit ever being lodged with them. That info on the initial application form is the only info provided by her on deposit schemes.

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by westminster View Post
            On what basis? Nothing you have told us indicates that you have a claim against LL.

            Also note that, if you and the other tenants have individual contracts, you only have exclusive possession of your rooms, and the LL is entitled to enter the communal areas to make repairs.
            I suppose my basis would be that I don't believe my deposit was ever protected with a scheme, therefore aren't I entitled to 3 times the amount or something like that (I read that on the government website)

            I'm aware that she'd be entitled to enter the communal areas without notice, which is what she did, if it was an individual tenancy. However, she's claiming it's a joint tenancy.

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by Big Fudge View Post
              I suppose my basis would be that I don't believe my deposit was ever protected with a scheme, therefore aren't I entitled to 3 times the amount or something like that (I read that on the government website)

              I'm aware that she'd be entitled to enter the communal areas without notice, which is what she did, if it was an individual tenancy. However, she's claiming it's a joint tenancy.
              Oh, now I see why you didn't pay the last 3 months rent.
              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 Big Fudge View Post
                I can't remember and I can't check as I was never provided with my copy of the tenancy agreement which she told me I'd get
                Are you in touch with any of the other tenants who shared the house? Would they be able to tell you what theirs says, it will give us a pretty good idea of what yours will have said.

                Was the property higher than 2 storeys? Was there a HMO license displayed anywhere?

                Have you now left the property?

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by Big Fudge View Post
                  I suppose my basis would be that I don't believe my deposit was ever protected with a scheme, therefore aren't I entitled to 3 times the amount or something like that (I read that on the government website)
                  Theoretically, but 1) you'd have to claim for it in the county court (you can't just decide to award it to yourself), and 2) following a recent court of appeal judgment, tenants can only claim during the tenancy and have no claim for non-compliance with deposit protection after the tenancy has ended (and your tenancy has ended).

                  In short, you owe the LL three months' rent.

                  I'm aware that she'd be entitled to enter the communal areas without notice, which is what she did, if it was an individual tenancy. However, she's claiming it's a joint tenancy.
                  Claiming it's a joint tenancy doesn't make it a joint tenancy if it isn't/wasn't.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by Snorkerz View Post
                    Are you in touch with any of the other tenants who shared the house? Would they be able to tell you what theirs says, it will give us a pretty good idea of what yours will have said.

                    Was the property higher than 2 storeys? Was there a HMO license displayed anywhere?

                    Have you now left the property?
                    I'm still in contact some and the ones I have contacted can not remember what they signed as they'd been living there for a year before me.

                    The property was only two storeys. We constantly had the council round looking for our landlord as they believed there was more than 6 people living on 2 storeys which apparently isn't allowed. I wasn't aware of any HSO license, I don't believe one was displayed and I never heard of there being one.

                    I have left but I believe my tenancy is supposed to end at the end of this month.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by Big Fudge View Post
                      I'm still in contact some and the ones I have contacted can not remember what they signed as they'd been living there for a year before me.
                      So no one in the property has a signed copy of the tenancy agreement? Was the tenancy agreement the only document you signed? Would you remember if it was a newly printed document, or something that others had signed before you?

                      The property was only two storeys. We constantly had the council round looking for our landlord as they believed there was more than 6 people living on 2 storeys which apparently isn't allowed. I wasn't aware of any HSO license, I don't believe one was displayed and I never heard of there being one.
                      It is vaguely possible that your property required a HMO license from the local council. It would be sensible to phone the HMO Officer at the council and ask if the property did need a license, and f so, if it has one. It will only take them a couple of minutes to check this. If it should have, and hasn't, report back.

                      I have left but I believe my tenancy is supposed to end at the end of this month.
                      But proving it without a copy of your tenancy agreement is not going to be easy.

                      Presuming your tenancy is over, you can forget your 3x. As you owe 3 months rent, it would be pointless suing in the small claims court for your deposit back.

                      Comment

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