Landlord not making repairs due to "arrears"

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  • Landlord not making repairs due to "arrears"

    Me and my partner have been renting privately from a landlord for over 4 years and in the last 6 months he has started being very obstructive. We pay our rent by direct debit and have had no troubles in the past however recently there was a spillage of liquid by accident onto the cooker, which has led to the electricity tripping out every few hours.

    When we asked him to repair it he stated he would not do anything as we were in arrears. According to our rent book we are up to date and have no arrears and when asked he will not say how much just that we are.

    Furthermore when we wrote to him requesting the repairs he just blanked the question and asked me if I wanted to hand my notice in.

    Can he refuse the repairs?
    Do we have a right to see his records to prove that we are not in arrears?

    Thanks in advance

  • #2
    Are you suggesting that the LL was to blame for the accidental spillage?
    Normally the cost of accidental damage should be accepted by the person who caused the damage - unless of course, they had accidental damage insurance.
    On the facts as you give them, it is clear that you should pay for the necessary repair.


    • #3
      Never in that question did I state I expect the landlord to pay for the repairs or blame the landlord for the spillage.

      What I asked was if there is an electrical fault in the house that is making it unliveable does that come under the agreement as ensuring that all electrics are safe etc?

      Also can the landlord just make up some arrears? We had some repairs done to the bathroom on 23/10/2011 with no problems at all. Now suddenly we are in arrears despite our bank account record showing payments taken on time for the full rental amount.


      • #4
        But regardless of his claim that you are in arrears, as you have already stated that the "accidental spillage" has caused the electrical tripping, then he is not responsible for the cost of the repairs, you are. As you will likely get the bill anyway, why not get an electrician to check the system out yourself.

        You state that your rent is paid by "direct debit" - is this correct? DDs are set up by the recipient, it is more likely you have a standing order. If you do infact have a DD, the LL's bank are responsible for the payment not reaching him, not you. I would never be happy paying rent by DD, as amounts can be varied and taken early without your control.


        • #5
          We have the money for the repairs etc its the claimed arrears that is the main thing I have issue with. We can pay arrears at any point, we are not "poor" by any standard so we don't know where it has come from and it seems strange that he will not tell us how much we owe...

          In terms of repairs, he is an electrician by trade and just thought he would do it. We never said we wouldn't pay him to fix it or anything - accidents happen.


          • #6
            Ask LL for rent statement covering arrears period. Explain you were unaware of any payment problems. Also check your bank statement to show SO was paid on time and to correct LL account/sort code.
            SOs may not have been paid if there were insufficient funds in your account at the time.
            It is Ts resp to ensure rent is received by LL on date due.


            • #7
              According to our accounts we are completely up to date with the rent. We have bank statements to show this.

              He states that the rental statement is his property and that we don't need to see it. He also claims the arrears date back to Feb this year, £25. Why is he bringing it up now almost a year later, he has done other repairs since then so now I have to question why this one suddenly warrents the finding of arrears and missed payments etc.

              From our side all rent has been paid on time.

              Thanks again


              • #8
                He's going to have to show you a rent statement if he wants to pursue you for it - a court won't be impressed if he doesn't.

                Why don't you type up your on rent statement for 2011 and send him a copy of it? Ask him where his differs? Useful evidence if it ever does get 'legal'.


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