Tenant won't agree release deposit - please help!

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    Tenant won't agree release deposit - please help!

    We live overseas and rent out our UK property through {Mod - name removed} letting agency. We have had some problem tenants who absolutely trashed the place before checking out. Broken furniture, filthy walls, filthy furniture that had to be thrown out, needles left lying around that had to be professionally cleaned up, broke into restricted locked areas, destroyed the garden with a dog, missing items, the list goes on. The check out report documents how bad it was and the lettings agency have given us formal statements, but when presented with the checkout report the tenant refused to acknowledge that anything was amiss and won't agree to the deposit deduction!

    My agency have been really unhelpful and advised me that we had to wait 91 days from the day of checkout and then pursue it through the small claims court. It seems crazy that this is how it works and I haven't been able to find much clarification on the local area website. Can any other landlords help me out with the best way forward on this? It's really difficult trying to do this from the other side of the world and any help or insights would be appreciated.

    #2
    My ex tenant's deposit is registered with Mydeposits.co.UK (by me, no agent). I have released £900 and kept £200 to replace the bed and thoroughly clean. (This tenant moved into a newly refurbished flat and left after 4 months. I agreed to him leaving and waived my right to rent until I re let the flat providing it was as clean as when he moved in. Needless to say it wasn't)

    As this is the first time I have ever kept any of the deposit I phoned My deposit for advice this week. They told me I do not have to do anything. It is up to the tenant to raise the dispute with them. They will then send me a letter informing me that the tenant has not agreed with my withholding £200. Presumably I then have send photo's, emails etc to prove my case. The tenant has 3 months to raise the dispute

    I don't understand why you have to go to the SCC unless you are sueing for more than the deposit.

    Meanwhile, after taking plenty of photos, I have cleaned up the flat and advertised it.

    Hope this helps, regards, Pat

    Comment


      #3
      thanks Pat. I have since found out that the deposit is held by Mydeposits too so I have emailed them about starting the process. I think {Mod - name removed} have completely misled me about the SCC.

      Comment


        #4
        Presumably you are going to keep all of the deposit due to the expenses you will incur in clearing up the house. The agent should inform the tenant that he will not get his deposit back due to the state the property was left in.

        Make sure you have photos of the mess as well as the agents written proof. Then, as I said, it is up to the tenant to challenge your decision to keep the deposit and My deposits will decide.

        I can't tell you more than that as I am waiting to see if my ex tenant is going to take things further. There is no need to go to the SCC unless you want more money. This can be a lengthy process and only worth doing if you know where your ex tenant lives and has the money to pay should you win.

        Good luck, Pat

        Comment


          #5
          warrington: there are forum rules against "naming & shaming" - suggest you remove name of agent...

          Good luck!
          I am legally unqualified: If you need to rely on advice check it with a suitable authority - eg a solicitor specialising in landlord/tenant law...

          Comment


            #6
            Good tip, how do you edit a post? I will edit out ***** if anyone knows how to do it on an iPad.

            Update from mydeposits is that the tenant had 90 days to formally make a dispute. They haven't done this so in theory I should be able to get the deposit back in full. The tenant is then free to go to the small claims court at their own cost if they want to, but this is unlikely. Everything has been well evidenced and their case would be pretty weak.

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