Deposit paid, still no contract or keys in sight

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    Deposit paid, still no contract or keys in sight

    Hello everyone, I'm looking for a bit of advice please.

    I've paid a desposit for rental of a property around the 25th of March. Legally the tennants were due to be out on the 12th April however the letting agent negotiated with them to be out by the preceeding weekend; Good Friday.
    They didn't vacate on this day and in fact handed the keys back on the 14th.
    The story is roughly that they now owe 3 months back rent. They served a 2month notice on them to vacate ending on the 12th.

    The house has damage which will need to be worked on and the outside is littered with rubbish.
    The letting agent is so far leaving this up to the tennant to sort out but they seem incapable of doing it which the agent seems to be unable to understand.

    I've heard a lot of talk from the letting agent but so far not a lot of action. I've been dealing with two people and I've had to remind both of them that when they promise to return calls it's honourable to do so. One seems to have gotten the message, the other keeps apologising for not doing so but not exactly correcting his ways. Therefore I feel like I'm chasing everything. I have been making a log of this as I always do.

    I've not yet got a date for moving in yet I'm assured that it will be by this weekend.

    Currently due to the tennant not moving out and the letting agent having not done the work to the property yet (previous tennant damaged rooms and never cleaned) I'm effectively homeless, living out of a work collegue's spare room with all my belonging's in another collegue's garage. I've made a move across the country of 140miles for work reasons and have vacated my previous property in a timely manner.

    Whilst I've left a deposit I have not signed any letting agreement yet. This I'm told is due when the first month's rent is handed over.
    I have paid for references/searches upon myself which have come back ok.
    Giving up the house and looking elsewhere is sadly not an option. It has a large garage which I need for my hobbies.

    What I'm wondering is where do I stand.
    1) The extra costs and incovienience I have incurred both due to the tennant and the agent taking their time. A verbal agreement is still a contract in law as far as I am aware ?

    2) Getting some form of compensation, say a reduction in rent or first month free, perhaps waiving of the contract fees. I guess this is probably more a goodwill issue than anything legal.

    3) Is there any legal route I should be taking having already paid a deposit. I had thought of contacting the landlord to try and deal directly, but the agent will not reveal their address. I'm aware that I can ask for this in writing and they must give it to me, but do I have to signed a contract or is a mere deposit enough ?

    I don't wish to rock the boat, but I rather dislike being treating in such a poor manner.

    Thanks for reading my essay

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