Chasing non eu tenants for back rent and damages after they have left

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    Chasing non eu tenants for back rent and damages after they have left

    Hi all,

    Pretty new landlord (15 months) based in Glasgow.

    I rented out my flat in Glasgow via an established national letting agent in March 2016, to a non-eu national and his family. He is from one of the more wealthier arab states, and had a government scholarship to come here (net income of >4k per month). The agent carried out the requisite checks, but did not get a guarantor. He was a PHD or post-doc student, I understand, and came with his wife and two kids.

    At first it all went well, but after a few months his rent was regularly late, and at the end of his 12 month contract, he was a couple of months behind. On the day of the checkout, he was already not present, and the flat was a bit of a mess (serious damage to bathroom and kitchen, pretty much every wall he had drilled some holes in).

    All in all it cost me a month of time and then builders fees etc to get the flat back up to spec. It's now almost re-let, and I have received all of his deposit, which was uncontested by him.

    I am now considering taking him to small claims (simple procedure) to get back the rest of my expenses. It comes to just under 4k. I have not included any of my own time in sorting the place out.

    I have a couple of problems, though, which are:

    1. I intend to ask for the missing rent + builders expenses (less deposit) + time that the flat could not be let because it was undergoing all of the work to get it fixed (letting agent could only relist it one month after he left). Is this OK?

    2. Reading through the simple procedure, I should try and contact him first. I finally got all of his ID and references from the letting agent, so I now have a reference from his embassy in London, and copies of he and his wife's passports (tenancy agreement is in both their names). I have no idea if he is still in Glasgow / Scotland / UK. I will contact his embassy first but am unsure what I am legally allowed to say to them about the former tenant.

    If anyone has any input to help me solve this problem, I'd be much obliged. Maybe templates for letters to his referees (I already found a good one to send to the tenant, if i find him, on the which? website).

    And any comments from any of your past experiences in similar situations.

    Many thanks in advance!

    Forget court my friend. A UK judge would be reluctant to award most of those items.

    The only thing I can think of is maybe to write to the country's ambassador here and ask for your letter to be passed to guy's employer in home country. Maybe, just maybe, they will pay up to avoid souring the relationship with the UK.


      Thanks JK0,

      I am still mulling over my options, the loss is quite a lot for me, but I am keen not to throw good money after bad!

      Indeed I will start with an email to the embassy (I have their email address from the reference), but I'm not sure what I can legally say about the tenant to them. The wording of the reference is words to the effect of "he's good for the money but its his responsibility to pay". I'll do some more reading tomorrow before I pen the email.

      Thanks for your advice, really appreciate it!


        I wouldn't be reticent about setting out your losses if I were you. This is your only chance to make your point.


          Reticent I wasn't! Sent a pretty verbose e-mail this morning.

          I shall update here if anyone is interested to follow the progress of this one (please comment below if so).


            Yeah, I'd be interested to hear how this turns out. I hope you have success.


              Sending an email to an embassy is close to useless in the best of times.

              In your case it'll be like writing to Buckingham Palace to complain about one of Her Majesty's subjects.


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