living in poor conditions

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    living in poor conditions

    I moved into a block of flats in january 2011. One side is an old brewery converted and there is a brand new block with only 4 flats and the whole ground floor as a shared garage for the 12 flats total.
    I moved in when they were not finished completlty as i fell pregnant.
    zw22So i took the flat. got the keys, no carpets! there were holes in the walls! the bathrrom was disguisting and the previous tennants stuff was still in!!! so someone came to remove it. I then couldnt move into it for another 4 weeks because i had to decorate and put carpets ion to make it livable and had to clean the place top to bottom! so i payed rent for a month not living there, payed a £400 bond (for what exactly i'll never no!) then spent all my savings on doing it up. Why i did all this i dont no. i think it was because i was desperate.
    Anyways!! the landlord went "bust" in october and it was taken over by a company called the {Mod - name removed}. ive now found out that the landlord has done this twice and had 2 different companies. he's basically a cowboy builder. Ive paid rent to the {Mod - name removed} since october and nothing has been done to finish or upkeep the building.
    There are no fire exits, fire extinguishers (i've bought one myself for the house) no fire alarms, the staircases are wooden! if my side was to go on fire i would be trapped. there is a large balcony that is not safe! the door doesnt lock to get onto it and their is no drainige system on it so the water seeps through the outside into my hallway outside my flat. so tyhe carpet i bought for there stinks and will have to be removed soon when i have the energy. All the post boxes are in one place, they've all been broken into. the main front door is broken, you have to litrally kick it with the key in to get it open. the garage door broke last week and someones car was in there or 4days and couldn't get it out and eventaully my ex boyfriend had to fix it! there is no lights in the corridoors so i can't go out when its dark!! My neibour split his head open walking through them with a tourch last month!
    the cooker doesnt work properly, you have to press every button for it to come on. the lights trip all the time. the garage is a state as furiture and rubbish is dumped there and nobody owns up to it. there are numerous other things but it will take forever to write them all. Ive contacted environmental health who are coming out soon hopefully.
    Im on antidepressants because of this! i dont have post natal depression. I would have moved out but i simply can't afford it and council takes so long to sort anything out.
    I want to no if i can claim compensation for this. if so how?
    thank you all for your time
    oh and the {Mod - name removed} simply do not reply or answer calls

    #2
    PLEASE REMOVE NAMES - it is against forum rules

    ======================

    It is certainly possible for you to claim compensation, whether you are awarded any by a court is not certain, but doing so will result in eviction.

    As you can't afford to move out, it may be best to get these problems sorted rather than take a confrontational approach that will just result in more problems for you.

    You have done the right thing to approach the environmental health officers. They will conduct an inspection under the 'Housing Health and Safety Rating System' and (in some circumstances) can get things fixed even without the landllords co-operation.

    Some of your issues will not be addressed by the EHO (ie non-safety issues). Once you have found out what they are, you may be able to take action yourself to fix them - http://england.shelter.org.uk/get_ad..._doing_repairs

    Other than that, it is a matter of suing the landlord. You would sue for the difference between the rent you have paid, and the rent that a place in it's condition should have been - so, if you live in a flat with no bath for a month, then you may be awarded 20% of a months rent or similar (pure guesswork).

    If you claim Housing Benefit then such an award will (in effect) reduce your rent liability, so the council may require you to return any rent that has been overpaid to you in benefit.

    As I said above, you have a contract for a fixed period of time, once that comes to an end, the landlord should be able to evict you quite easily. Although it may not be fair, that is likely to be what happens if you sue the landlord.

    Comment


      #3
      Thank you. I don't have a tennancy agreement anymore. It ran out last year and i havent been given another one. dos this affect anything?

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by chris89 View Post
        Thank you. I don't have a tennancy agreement anymore. It ran out last year and i havent been given another one. dos this affect anything?
        No. Assuming your original tenancy was an AST in England/Wales, then it became a statutory periodic tenancy (a.k.a. rolling contract) after fixed term expiry. In other words, the tenancy effectively continued.

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by chris89 View Post
          I want to know if i can claim compensation for this. if so how?
          You would need to engage a solicitor to pursue such a claim. I'm not sure that all of your complaints would provide a strong basis for a claim for damages as many relate to communal areas and/or are arguably not the LL's liability.

          When you agreed to rent the flat did the LL say it would be carpeted before you moved in? Does the contract state that LL is responsible for repairing the cooker? (if not, it's not his liability; and are you sure you are using it correctly?) Do you have an allocated parking space in the garage in your contract?

          As this is a new build, as well as the EHO I would contact Building Control at the council and raise your concerns.

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by chris89 View Post
            Im on antidepressants because of this! i dont have post natal depression. I would have moved out but i simply can't afford it and council takes so long to sort anything out.
            Re-reading this, it has the air of someone rather deliberately planning a compensation claim, the fact that you point out that your depression isn't post natal. How do you know this for sure? Why did you even mention it?

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by westminster View Post
              Re-reading this, it has the air of someone rather deliberately planning a compensation claim, the fact that you point out that your depression isn't post natal. How do you know this for sure? Why did you even mention it?
              i mentioned it as i didn't realise you could claim compensation. it was someone I no told me that because i'm on antidepressants, ive been on them since february because of where im living, that i might be entitled to claim. So now ues i am deliberatley claiming but when i went on to antidepressants I did not no I could do such a claim. that is why I have posted a query asking about this as I wouldn't no where to start.

              Comment


                #8
                I was told that it was al;ready decorated and carpeted so i took it but it does not say in the contract thatanything about it. I also used to get a communial bill for the electricity in communial area's but never recived a copy of it.. just got a letter saying e.g
                electricity used this month is £329 divided by 12 = what i would pay

                Comment


                  #9
                  I would think the only compensation you are entitled to would be maybe some reembursment of rent, which, as has already been said would go back to the council if you are on HB. Perhaps some for water damage to carpets (as they are your own).

                  I'm assuming that if it was unacceptable on moving in then it was in the same condition when you viewed it, so why did you take it? I can understand you may have been desperate for a roof over your head but if you had the means to move into here then surely you could have found somewhere decent?

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by Snorkerz View Post
                    Other than that, it is a matter of suing the landlord. You would sue for the difference between the rent you have paid, and the rent that a place in it's condition should have been - so, if you live in a flat with no bath for a month, then you may be awarded 20% of a months rent or similar (pure guesswork).

                    If you claim Housing Benefit then such an award will (in effect) reduce your rent liability, so the council may require you to return any rent that has been overpaid to you in benefit.
                    Whilst damages might be calculated in proportion with the rent, any sum awarded would not be a 'rent reimbursement' - it would be an award for damages, and as such not refundable to Housing Benefit.

                    Comment

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