Tenant broke lease

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    Tenant broke lease

    Hi there,
    I hope someone who has similar experience can shed light to my situation.
    My AST was signed with a tenant early this year. 6 months down the road, she texted to say that she needed to flee to a women shelter due to domestic abuse. Seeing that, I agreed to look for replacement tenant and return part of her 6 weeks deposit should someone takes it up and return whichever left of her deposit back to her.
    I found a tenant after a month but before I could even get back to her, she lodged a claim with the DPS. I wanted to settle it privately but it seems that resolution with the DPS is what she is after. The deposit is insured and prescribed information is done prior to start of tenancy.
    I have tried to email and text her but she is not responding ? Does she think that she deserved more when the 2 weeks that is left of her deposit ?
    Pls advise ?

    #2
    If the deposit is protected with the DPS, you need to follow the DPS rules on returning it.

    If the tenant is in a women's shelter, it is quite likely that they are not communicating with anyone for their own safety.
    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).

    Comment


      #3
      Since it costs tenants nothing to go to the DPS, and usually results in them being better off, I'm afraid that is what increasingly seems to happen.

      Look where kindness gets you. Just go through the DPS rigmarole, and make sure you put down all your expenses.
      To save them chiming in, JPKeates, Theartfullodger, Boletus, Mindthegap, Macromia, Holy Cow & Ted.E.Bear think the opposite of me on almost every subject.

      Comment


        #4
        jpkeates,

        I would want to believe that too. What was at the back of my mind is that why would she asked for a landlord reference in that case ?
        She didn't leave a forwarding address but she has my mobile number and email if she is fearing for safety.

        Comment


          #5
          JK0,

          I don't know if this is true but it seems that DPS is for tenants, that is the only reason why I am hesitating to go through DPS and prefer the private settlement route. She agreed that I would find a replacement tenant and then to have the remains of her deposit so that I would not be a financial loss due to her break lease. Yes, I have taken the moral route but it worked against me in this case.

          Comment


            #6
            What happens if I chose not to go down the ADR route, what would happen ? The DPS says that I am to apply to Court which really confuses me because what I am applying to court for ?

            Comment


              #7
              The deposit money is the tenants.
              If they don't agree to let you use their money for something, you can't use it unless a court allows you to (or the binding ADR process).

              So, yes, you would have to get the tenant to agree that they owed you money and that it was OK to take it from their deposit, or get the ADR process to agree they owed you the money, or sue them for the money you think you are owed.
              Those are pretty much the only options you have.
              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).

              Comment


                #8
                Your posts are confusing. If you lodge the deposit with DPS, then you have no choice but to go through them for it to be released. They won't release it until either both come to an agreement or you go via ADR.

                Are you saying that she asked for her full deposit back? If so, counter challenge and state that you intend to keep X of the deposit for none payment of rent until end of the fixed term. Ideally, your AST states that this is one of the reasons you can keep the deposit for.

                You will only go to the ADR if you don't come to an agreement as to what you are releasing back/keeping. If you have a clear AST, and she doesn't have anything in writing that says that you will release her of her fixed term without mentioning anything about conditions, then it should be straight forward.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Notyetagain,

                  Thank you for your reply.
                  The tenancy doesn't mention anything about breaking lease and we only agreed on it after she said that she needed to move to a woman's shelter urgently.
                  I have tried to email and text her after I got an email from DPS saying that my tenant has lodged a claim on the deposit. My email to her states clearly that I want to return her the remains of her deposit and there is no response from her. Either she is embarrassed to have done what she has done or she thinks that she deserve more than what we agreed ?
                  Ideally I do not want to go through the ADR route and to solve it between ourselves but no response from her ?

                  Comment


                    #10
                    jpkeates,

                    I was thinking of going down the ADR route as well and see what the adjudicator says.
                    She left no forwarding address so I think small claim courts will be hard to track her down.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Use the ADR, that's exactly what its for.
                      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).

                      Comment


                        #12
                        I don't thinkyou're at the ADR stage yet. You need to go through the DPS process and log in the amount you are prepared to return. The ball will be in her court to agree or not. If she disagree then the ADR starts ( although DPS might suggest to try to negotiate a second time as clearly they rather avoid the ADR process).

                        Comment


                          #13
                          just skimming but I dont see anything about the length of the AST. If it was 6 months then she may be entitled to the deposit back. If it was longe than 6 months then just use the ADR, offering a fair amount.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            buzzard1994,

                            The AST is for 1 year and she broke lease on the 7th month.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              I would firstly double check with a solicitor regarding her notice period as I'm sure there are special rules for victims of domestic abuse.
                              Last edited by Wright76; 27-12-2016, 00:34 AM. Reason: Spelling

                              Comment

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