Help with Court Letter please

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    Help with Court Letter please

    Hi, im very new to this and hoping for some assistance.

    I have been living as a tennant in a house for three years. In january 2016, i recieved a phone call stating we had to leave the property at the end of our tennancy agreement due to the homeowners needing to sell.

    Natuarally i was annoyed as we had just decoarted the house due to being told we could renew a few weeks earlier.

    It started a heated debate as they hadn't protected our deposit (throughout 3 tennancy agreements), no valid section 21 and other valid points etc.

    In february 2016 we were contacted by a management company who informed us that the situation was bad on the landlords point and they had been instructed to step in and take over.

    They came over and informed us that the landlords could not evict us due to the depsoit situation. They also said that the reason they wanted to sell was due to owing money etc etc.

    They sat us down and offered us a new 6 month tennancy agreement, stating that the landlord was now just a name on a piece of paper, and the bank had stepped in. Therefore the landlord now had no control of any decisions anymore. It was between the management company and the bank, the landlord would then get whatever pennies were left over.

    We were told that we could renew in 6 months, and extend to a 12 month, as long as we paid on time and kept the place in good condition.

    They protected our depsosit on the spot, and also done a few checks, replaced the ovan, done a gas safety check and a few other things around the house as they said the landlord didnt have a choice anymore, they had to do what the management company said.

    Everything seemd finally back on track.

    Well scroll to june 2016 and we askd to start the renewal process although a little early, and behold....sorry landlord doesnt want to renew.

    Everything that was stated in february was clearly a lie. We asked them could the landlord kick us out back in february and they said no, but clearly that isnt the case.

    They are part of the property obumdsman service if that helps.

    My question is do i have any legal way around this or is it just a harsh lesson learnt the hard way (dont trust people)

    And also, my deposit was protected in february with this new agreement, but can i claim for all the previous agreements when it was not protected? There have been 3 seperate ones over the past few years with different agents and private. Or would the fact it has now been protected over ride this?

    Sorry its so long winded but obv although we are not owners, this is still our home and we feel abit lost.


    The protected deposit for the most recent tenancy allows the landlord to issue a s21 notice this time.
    And they could have served notice "last time" if they'd simply given you the deposit back - so, while it looks like they were being clever, they possibly weren't.

    Until they serve notice, you don't have to do anything, as, so far, they're just telling you what they plan to do, as far as I can tell.
    They will have to give you a minimum of two month's notice, that expires after the initial fixed term does.

    You can claim the penalty for the non-protection of the deposit for up to six years after the failure to protect.
    However, it sounds like the landlord has no money (which makes actually collecting anything unlikely).

    You have a very tentative case against the agent for misleading you about the length of the agreement in order to get you to sign, but I don't really think that there's much practically you can do about that.

    For the avoidance of doubt, the s21 notice doesn't actually end your tenancy, and, if you don't leave, the landlord will have to go to court to evict you.
    That will take some time (maybe a couple of months), cost you a few hundred pounds in court fees, but, eventually, you'll have to leave.
    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).


      Thanks for the reply.

      Yes basically what i thought.

      Going for the money is one option, but as you said theyre clearly short and collecting would be an issue.

      Basically its just a lesson learned the hard way. I had a funny feeling the entire time and i was proven right.

      Thanks anyway


        Best of luck.

        One helpful question when renting is to ask the agent how many properties the landlord has in their portfolio.
        It's asked far too infrequently.

        Professional landlords, in the main, value long term, decent tenants and don't experience changes in circumstance that forces the property to be needed for some other purpose.
        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).


          This landlord wasnt a professional. As far as im aware they originally moved out due to personal circumstances within the street (themselves and a neighbour).

          The original letring agents seems good enough but they didnt protect the deposit, then again the secind and finally the landlord themselves when we eventually went private.

          As states its a lesson learnt the hard way. We put alot of money into the place making it look really nice, under the understanding we were safe, only to be duped and landlord reap the benifits whilst they sell.

          Final question, if a check in sheet wasnt done, do they have any right to retain any deposit as nothing can be proven? There was damaged doors and carpets when we took over. We did our own inventory and sent it the original letting agents, but the agents didnt have an 'official' version. After all this hassle last thing we need is being scammed out of our deposit aswell.

          Thanks for taking the time to reply aswell. Its very helpful


            The landlord/agent can (pretty much) ask for anything as a deposit deduction and lots do.

            What they're actually entitled to is compensation for any loss in value to their property beyond fair wear and tear (and anything specific in the tenancy agreement, like a professional clean for example, which is quite common).

            If they have no check in inventory, they're not going to be able to prove any loss in value, because they don't have the "before" evidence that they'll need.

            If they try and deduct something you don't agree with, use the deposit protection company's dispute resolution service.
            They'll apply the rules fairly.

            It's very unusual for a landlord not to agree to the binding resolution service, but it's possible.
            In which case you'd have to sue the landlord for your deposit back, which raises the whole non-protection issue, so your landlord would be a complete mug to risk that.
            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).


              Yeh sounds good then.

              The property is in very good standard. When we took over it was very tired and outdated, and since we were under the impression that we were staying we completly redecorated, and even recarpeted a few rooms.

              Also have numberous emails stating poor condition of certain things amd asking for replacements, so that can be used as evidence.

              God im making the place sound terrible (the house isnt that bad now haha)

              I guess il just see how it pans out. I presume we will recieve a section 21 towards the end of july for a septmeber eviction, or would they issue that at end of the tennancy?

              Not alot i can do now i supose except accept it, and try and move on. The deposit situation and a complaint to ombundsman service is my only consilation but in the end looks like im loosing my home.



                Some help please regarding deposit.

                Morning all, im hoping for some advice please

                Long story short, been a tennant for 3 years, at first with 2 letting agents, then privatly with the landlord then again with a new agent 6 months ago (all the same landlord, they just moved around)

                I was with the first letting agents for about 9 months, then they split and formed a new was with them for about another 9 months or so.

                This is were things go sour........the landlord asked if i had any issues going direct as she was having issues with agency etc. I had no issues but queried the deposit situation.

                Both previous agency contract agreements stated that the deposit was protected, but after a bit of digging it was found out to be a lie, on both contracts, and was indeed un protected.

                The landlord knew about this and said they gurantee they would pay the deposit as they were ultimatly repsonsible, and therefore we signed an agreement to go private. They still did not protect the deposit, only guranteed it.

                In february 2016, things went really sour and a new agency stepped in, they immediatly protected the deposit and i recieved confirmation by the dps.....2 and a half years after originally moving in.

                I have just moved out and now they are claiming damages etc, disputing the deposit. We checked out and all was signed stating good condition etc, but now the manager says that was just a checkout and its her job to go over the property later?

                There was no original inventory created, amd certainly one not done in the most recent contract with the new agency as we had been living there a few years and made it our home.

                I have logged into the dps website and it says contract start date as march 2015, for 12 months, but it was only set up in february 2016 for 6 this legal?

                A few questions.....

                A. Can i claim penalty for not protecting the deposit on 3 seperate occasions, until finally protected in feb this year?

                B. Can they continue to try and claim the deposit even though no original inventory is available, and the current agency have only been there 6 months whilst we have been there 3 years?

                C. If the checkout states good condition, all rubbish cleaned etc, which has been signed. Can they later say there are issues with rubbish being left etc

                D. If a fault such as a leak causes damage, such as visual damage etc, but is verified as not tennant fault, can they be claimed against?

                E. The house was multicoloured when moved in originaly, and over time we have redecorated etc to make it ours. Can they pursue to claim not neutrel colours even if i have pictures of poor state when originally moved in?

                Any other information regarding the deposit situation would be very handy.

                I'm not an ass whos just trying to make a quick penny. The landlord hasnt been the greatest and even to the end we tried our best with them to be co operative etc. We have just bought our own home and were expecrting this deposit back, so any help would be great



                  The landlord is correct when she says she is ultimately responsible for the deposit. She should have protected it within 28 days of taking it not matter what agent was acting for her. Therefore you could claim 3 X deposit from her. She has acted illegally.

                  No inventory means there is no comeback to you for damages etc.

                  The DPS nearly always comes down on the side of the tenant. Get in touch with DPS and tell them of unprotected deposit and contact landlord+agent saying you will bring a case against LL if they do not compensate you + return total deposit.

                  If you have the stamina file a case and see where it goes but just getting the money owed + some would work for me and teach the LL a lesson.

                  Freedom at the point of zero............


                    A - Yes, you can.

                    B - They can continue to try, but have little chance (but see E),

                    C - They can try, but it's unlikely to be successful. They would have to somehow prove the issues didn't arise after the checkout unless you agree with them. If what they're claiming is true, there isn't really a dispute.

                    D - That's a more complex question and depends on a number of things, including what the issue was and how it was reported, managed and what damage arose.

                    E - They can claim compensation for your repainting unless it was done with the landlord's specific consent. You are not normally allowed to paint rental property. However, they would have to show that there was some kind of loss arising from the repainting - which can be done, but isn't that simple.

                    I'd expect that once you point out that the deposit wasn't protected and all you want is for it to be returned, but are prepared to consider legal action if it isn't returned forthwith for the deposit to be sent across pretty rapidly.
                    It would be an idiot who tried to continue with deductions in that scenario.
                    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).


                      A: Exactly how many instances of penalty you can apply for depends on how many tenancies there have been, not the change of agents. A fixed term is one instance, a new fixed term after the previous one ended is another. Any statutory periodic arising after a fixed term is one, so for example if there was a fixed term, 31 days of SPT, and then another fixed term is 3 total. The deposit is legally considered to have been returned and immediately paid again for the purpose of any new tenancies, and the clock for protection start again.
                      I am not a lawyer, nor am I licensed to provide any regulated advice. None of my posts should be treated as legal or financial advice.

                      I do not answer questions through private messages which should be posted publicly on the forum.


                        Thanks for all your input. I apeciate the help. I have the agents aparently calling later to discuss deductions etc.

                        I started a claimback via the dps the othrr day so just waiting on agents to respond.

                        As for answer 3, yes that was exactly my question. Each time a new agents or private took over a new contract was agreed, creating a new ast. So if i wanted to act harder to pursuade the LL to back off, the legally i can attempt to claim 3x penalty for each contract (so 3 times in total)? Or am i wrong and it would be just for the entire time?



                          Each breaches, not necessarily each contract. Assuming there were a fixed term agreed each time, how long was it for? If 12 months, but you agreed a new contract at month 9 replacing the previous one, then yes, each contract there represent 1 breach. However if the contract was for a fixed term of 6 months say and statutory periodic thereafter, and it was 9 months before you agreed a new fixed term, then that's 2 breaches there. OTOH, if all the subsequent "contracts" was merely "ABC is now the managing agent and you are to pay them from this point on, the tenancy continue otherwise per previous agreement." then new tenancies didn't arise.

                          You can legally claim for a penalty (of between 1x-3x deposit) for each breach of the regulations.
                          I am not a lawyer, nor am I licensed to provide any regulated advice. None of my posts should be treated as legal or financial advice.

                          I do not answer questions through private messages which should be posted publicly on the forum.


                            It's a bit more complicated than that.

                            Each tenancy would be a separate breach, but if the deposit was transferred between agents it would also be a separate breach - as the deposit was "received" again by the new agent
                            The prescribed information would have to be reissued.
                            But if there are three separate agreements (which coincided with three changes of agent) it's still three breaches.

                            So the entire deposit, plus as a minimum 3 times the value.
                            As I said, the landlord would be daft to turn down an offer of just the deposit.
                            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).


                              Well well.....shock, no phone call from the agenst. I'm not suprised.

                              The original agents took tge deposit and said it was protected via the dps, as stated in the contract.

                              The two owners of this agents eventually had a fallout and split up the agencies (hence agency number 2). Once again it was stated in the contract that it was protected.

                              The landlord fell out with this second afency which led to going private.

                              It was then that we contacted the dps and found the 2 previous contracts were not protected. An account had been created at the start but no monies transfered.

                              The LL said she would guarantee the deposit.

                              When the final agents took over, they immediatly protected it, and i was issued with an id number and all details directly from the dps.

                              So by my count, although not 100% the LL fault, she has failed to protect on 3 occassions. Although she was unaware of the two agents foul behaving, she should of protected the deposit when she found out last year, am i correct?

                              How would i look at processing a claim for each occasion? Would i need to claim all together, or sepratly 3 times?

                              Also how would i explain in the letter and to the courts? Because the deposit was £600, is the penalty claim for £600-£1800, or £1800-£5400 due to each instance?

                              Cheers for the help


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