overpaid rent...worth going to small claims court?

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    overpaid rent...worth going to small claims court?


    i was looking for some advice/opinions on my situation.

    we have overpaid our rent by £125.00 we paid a full months rent before moving out, but new tenants moved in earlier than the full month.

    the landlord has agreed that we are owed this much, and had agreed to pay it back to our account. we never recieved it. we have this in and email from him.

    in the meantime, we've had to sort out our deposit through tds, he had deducted it from the amount he was claiming for, though it still ended up that he was claiming for mor than our deposit...in total £1400.00. our dispute has now been settled, from a deposit of £1030.00 he was awarded £600.00 and us £430.00. they have stated that they are not allowed to award or deduct overpaid rent.

    so we are still owed £125.00 from the landlord. i don't think we're going to get this money from him, he's not paid before when he said he would and i'm sure he wants to keep it to make up for the award we got from the deposit.

    is it worth us taking to the small claims court? i'd like to, just for the hell of it...but would we definately win in this situation? we can't really afford to lose.

    the other thing that concerns me is that if we do this, he will then take us to court for the remaining amount of deposit. are the judges likely to go against what tds have already decided? it wasn't for anything major, we had got slightly less than what we had expected we would...he hadn't taken into account for wear and tear on any items he was claiming for and from the report we had back they've corrected this and i'm happy with their decision, it does seem fair.

    any help appreciated,

    Last edited by fuzzydong; 12-05-2016, 17:11 PM. Reason: typing mistakes

    Maybe look after the property you live in better and you wouldn't have 'lost' £600 you can't afford to lose.

    Pale into insignificance yet?

    £125 is a mere 25% of what you've just paid out.

    I love to award the entire deposit back to Tenants. It means they cared about my property. I've never had to deduct £600 after any tenancy. What the heck were you up to?


      not that it has anything to do with what i wanted advice about...it was a big house we have 4 young kids. repainting and repairing things was obviously quite expensive. we didn't dispute any damage...it was just that he was claiming for the whole lot not allowing for 3 years wear and tear and the state of the place when we moved in. it was pretty bad, i have learned lessons like not accepting an inventory done a month before we moved in (we weren't told when it was taking place, far from where we were living at the time, and so i wasn't present when it took place), i took it in good faith that it was fair and accurate, it was massive, and i didn't go through it all...it wasn't completely accurate, but nowt i can do about that now. it's the first time i'd rented and it was only to be a few years while we settled into a new town.

      it was agreed by both parties, pretty much amiably, to go to mediation to get an independent view. i agree with the decision made. so i'm not sure why you're picking an argument that's not really needed. we agreed to go by what tds said and now he legally owes me £125 rent. i wanted to know the likely outcome of going to court, if he did decide to not accept the decision by tds
      Last edited by fuzzydong; 12-05-2016, 19:56 PM. Reason: add a detail


        The fact that TDS have adjudicated on the deposit issue means it is binding. That is a condition of entering in to ADR by both parties. It is highly unlikely that a judge would re-visit that decision. Thus, you should not expect the LL to up his claim from the deposit at small claims court, and if he did, he would be unlikely to win.

        If you have an email from the landlord stating that he accepts the rent was overpaid, plus he was going to pay it back to you, I would expect you to be in a good position. As TDS have stated, their judgement makes no comment on the overpaid rent, so it is still open to a court to decide upon it. You will need to start the process by sending a letter before action giving the LL 14 days to pay up, then if he doesnt you follow the SCC route. There is a fee to pay but it is added to the amount you claim from LL at the end.

        Originally posted by Hippogriff View Post
        Maybe look after the property you live in better and you wouldn't have 'lost' £600 you can't afford to lose.

        Pale into insignificance yet?

        £125 is a mere 25% of what you've just paid out.

        I love to award the entire deposit back to Tenants. It means they cared about my property. I've never had to deduct £600 after any tenancy. What the heck were you up to?
        You're joking right? You must be.

        You have provided no advice to the OP when I think it is fairly obvious he has a reasonable case. OP has provided a deposit to ensure he discharges his duties under the AST and with the payment of £600 he has. I don't see that he has done anything wrong here. Secondly, you neglect to mention the character of the LL who claimed for £1525 from a deposit and was awarded £600.


          From what we've been told it should be noted that OP's case relies only on the kindness (or lack of knowledge) of the landlord who has accepted to refund the rent when he had not legal obligation to do so.

          If he said that and agreed after the end of the tenancy, I am not convinced that this is really evidence that a refund is actually due.


            thanks ryan, that's very helpful advice.

            we've sent an email, now that we have the tds decision, asking him again to refund the money, if i don't hear by monday i'll get a letter sent out saying the 14 days and we may take him to the small claims court...hopefully he will just respond saying he'll pay, same as us, now that he has the report. i was just thinking ahead a bit, he's been a good landlord up until getting this rent back and being overzealous with his claim.


              Originally posted by fuzzydong View Post
              ...we have 4 young kids...
              Is having kids now a reasonable excuse for doing damage to someone's property? Well, I never.

              Don't do damage, don't lose £600. Seems obvious to me that you're on a revenge trip.


                well, we had three conversations with him about this, it took him 2 months to get us invoices and quotes. those phonecalls consisted of us chasing him. on the last phone call he gave me a rough idea how much it was going to cost, i choked, and said i can't agree to all of that, he said fine, i'll get the stuff to you and we can send it to tds.

                that's what we did...

                i am slightly annoyed that he's delayed the process all along with this deposit, and if i can get my £125.00, i will, just like he thought he can get as much as possible by not taking into account the actual loss of value and making us go through this process.


                  Originally posted by Ryan28 View Post
                  You're joking right? You must be.
                  Don't make incorrect assumptions. For the Landlord to be awarded £600 via ADR their original claim was probably completely justified. The OP must have trashed the place. As I said, I've never had to try and deduct £600 from a deposit... maybe the OP should focus on the big wins, the low-hanging fruit. Chasing for £125 is small-minded and, as stated up front, they want to do it "just for the hell of it"...


                    i didn't trash the place...it was a 4 bed house, with a huge kitchen and a living room that spanned the whole of the downstairs...the kids did mark the carpet, mark the walls...i've never disputed that...he was claiming to replace the whole lot for new, to repaint the house when it hadn't been painted for at least 5 years before we moved in. that's where the bulk of the deposit went. the carpets were really old before hand, marked and in some places threadbare, we did put it now out of use, but a lot of families would have...it's not fair that he would then want to claim the whole costs from me....i have not been unreasonable here. i have no idea how much a carpet is worth....i didn't have any choice but to get and independent view.
                    it's fine for him to try and claim it, who knows, i might have paid it all and he's on to a winner. i didn't. now i want to do the same with my £125.00 "for the hell of it".


                      clearly "trashing the place" has a very different meaning in my book...£600 is hardly the cost of repairing a "trashed" property these days. In the OPs shoes I would send the letter before action. Clearly the LL has got what he was entitled to - he should not get the overpaid rent also (if there is proof that this was indeed the case)
                      Unshackled by the chains of idle vanity, A modest manatee, that's me


                        Hi im new to this but really need advice with my similar problem. i live on the wirral merseyside when i moved in i paid my landlord a deposit and a months rent. also near enough straight away my housing benefit began. i got a little confused regarding my shortfall which was £16 a month and instead paid him 65 accidently for 11 months. in the mean time he said nothing about it. i later then realised what what id done and witheld some housing benefit as i worked out what id overpaid. however hes still saying i owe him this back? Im confused as already paid in advance to me if i owed him that id be two months in advance nearly .
                        Please if someone give me advice or post this in the right forum etc be a massive help thanks Danielle xx


                          Create a schedule showing everything you have paid and everything you think is/was due over the entire lease.
                          Send it to your landlord.

                          In most cases disputes like this are about a misunderstanding.
                          When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
                          Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).


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