Is LL requred to provide flat in a clean state?

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    Is LL requred to provide flat in a clean state?

    Hello, I'm new here so I apologise if I'm posting in the wrong place.

    In Thursday I collected the keys to my new flat. I went and visited so I could plan where things were going to go and I found that the flat has not been cleaned at all (despite the letting agent saying during our viewing that the flat would be cleaned).

    Every surface is dirty: thick dust round the skirting board; large clumps of dust and fluff in the bottom of the built-in wardrobe; leaves, stones, and assorted other bits (e.g. an almond, an elastic band, a scrap of paper...) all over the floor in every room; mud and dust and dirt on the kitchen floor; stains in the bottoms of the kitchen cupboards; crumbs on the work top (which feels greasy); dirt and hair in the bath; cobwebs everywhere. There's also mould in two corners which I'd missed when viewing the property, so maybe that's my fault, but other than that the place is so dirty I simply can't move in.

    Am I correct in thinking the landlord (or rather the management agency) should have cleaned it first?

    I've phoned the agency, who doesn't seem all that bothered. I told my contact on Friday that I had wanted to start moving in on Sunday (today). He said he couldn't get hold of the landlord, as he (the landlord) is in Spain at the moment. He asked me whether I would accept £50 off one month's rent and I answered that that wouldn't cover the cost of having it professionally cleaned and I don't have the time to clean it myself (I work full time and study part time).

    Could anyone please advise me, as I am desperate to start moving in and can't with it in this state?

    Thanks in advance.

    #2
    Property should have been cleaned.

    What normaly happens is you give back the place in a clean condition,
    and if the tenats have not cleaned, then the letting agents clean the
    place, and subtract the cost from the outgoing tenants deposit.

    So there is NO reason why the letting agent cannot get the place
    cleaned up.
    Even if the deposit does not cover cleaning and damages, then the
    agent sues the previous tenant.

    Monday, you raise hell with them, stating "You will get cleaners
    here now". The landlord doesnot haveto authorise you giving me
    a clean and habitable flat. That is your job.

    Unfortunately, if the agent says no, not much you can do at the
    moment till Monday comes.
    And you have signed a contract to rent which you cant getout of,
    just because it needs a clean ( Can't get out of until you discuss
    everything on here for advice )

    Ifyou have a camera, that can show the correct date on pictures,
    then take pictures of the mess, and if all else fails, get contractors
    in have the place cleaned, then argue about the money afterwards,

    there is no promise you will get your money back, butyou are halfway
    there with the agents giving you £ 50 reduction, but demand they
    clean the place as it comes out of the previous tenants deposit.

    assomeone else said, but post disapeared.
    accept the £50 and just clean it up as you have time. You only have to hand it back in the same state as you moved in so it will be less effort when you leave as you won't have to worry about deductions if it is not spotless.


    R.a.M.
    Last edited by ram; 07-10-2012, 10:45 AM. Reason: extra added + extra added

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      #3
      A promise is a promise. If the agent said they would clean it, they should keep their word. But you must hand the property back spotless when you leave or be willing to pay the extortionate cost of professional cleaning.

      If you are concerned, take photos and ask for them to be included on the inventory.

      The problem with the system of 'suing' the outgoing tenant to recover the cost of cleaning or going through the deposit deduction process is always more hassle than the landlord just cleaning the place himself. Tenants never agree to pay professional cleaning costs because they are always an order of magnitude higher than what it would have cost them if they had cleaned the place properly themselves before leaving.

      You can insist on the cleaning as it is your right, but it may be more hassle than it's worth as you may have to fight your agent now and when you move out if you don't professionally clean the place yourself when leaving.

      Your other option is to take it easy and accept the £50.

      You can always get someone you know to help you clean it or have a 'cleaning party' with a few bottles of wine paid for with the £50 and some music and invite all your friends.

      What constitutes a reasonable state of cleanliness can be quite subjective.

      In my experience, tenants who complain about cleanliness are often the ones who don't like cleaning. Hence, the property often gets handed back in just as bad if not worse than the condition they complained about even after it is professionally cleaned at the start. Then, there is usually all out war over any deposit deductions for cleaning. Maybe it's better to take the £50 and not end up in a big deposit dispute when you leave?

      It would of course be better if the place was spotless when you move in and spotless when you move out but it's not the end of the world if you have to do something to make a house into a home.

      Comment


        #4
        Sorry for my delay in replying. Thanks for your replies. The flat has been cleaned! Not thoroughly, but it's in an acceptable state now. When they saw the photos, something was done straight away!

        Thanks again for your advice.

        Comment


          #5
          Be careful when signing any inventory to note the condition when you moved in as that is all you have to do at the end of your tenancy is to return it in similar condition, less wear and tear.

          Originally posted by bureaucrazy
          A promise is a promise. If the agent said they would clean it, they should keep their word. But you must hand the property back spotless when you leave or be willing to pay the extortionate cost of professional cleaning.
          No you don't - see above.
          The advice I give should not be construed as a definitive answer, and is without prejudice or liability. You are advised to consult a specialist solicitor or other person of equal legal standing.

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by Paul_f View Post
            Be careful when signing any inventory to note the condition when you moved in as that is all you have to do at the end of your tenancy is to return it in similar condition, less wear and tear.

            No you don't - see above.
            I didn't mean to cause confusion. I did not write very clearly. What I meant was, if the agent promised to have the flat professionally cleaned to a spotless standard before T moves in, then they should keep their word. If the agent cleans the flat to a spotless standard, then the tenant should return the property just as clean when they leave. If the tenant hands the property back when they move out less clean than when they moved in, the agent is right to make the leaving T pay for professional cleaning to bring it back to the condition it was in the first place.

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