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Deposit deduction - unfair?

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535 views 4 replies latest reply: 30 March 2015
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Tenant

I have just moved out of my rental property that I have lived in for over 9 years. During checkout the inventory clerk pointed out a few issues, crack to inside door of dishwasher, crack in toilet pan and shed window which had cracked during a storm (therefore we boarded it up to stop content/shed being damaged any further). We hadn’t noticed both the dishwasher and toilet pan before. 

The person who has moved in is a inventory clerk herself, and moved in on the same day we moved out, there are additional items which have been spotted since she moved in and the landlady is now claiming over around £780 of of £1350, some of which are compenstory. We replied to this quotations for work and has subsquently come back and offered a reduction in some items where the current tenant will do the work with supplied materials and some discretionary reductions as a good will gesture bringing the total down to £550.

Our main issues are:

1. Toilet pan crack, not something we had noticed before and we had a flood where the cistern mechanism snapped (negligence of the landlord part as we mentioned the flush on the cistern was stiff) which caused the whole of the downstairs to be refloored and the kitchen to be redone. The toilet is a small cloakroom and hardly any room to move let alone try to take something in and damage it. We mentioned it could have either been the builders, manufactuers fault or due to the floor being damaged and pushing up the toilet due to warping. The original quote has now been amended to a lower value. We are still very angry about this as we would have pointed it out if it had been noticed. Any advise if we can fight against this?

2. The door sill on the patio door outside has crack on both ends (which was noticed by the clerk after we moved out). When we moved in the inventory stated that the door was very weathered. We believe that the cracking has occurred due to the weathering and has become brittle (upvc), but we need some advise as it is something we are not too sure about. The landlord claims that if it was weathered/fair wear the inventory clerk would have said that (they are not experts in weathering of material)

3. Gutters were cleaned after we moved out, the landlord has paid for these to be done without informing us of the costs. In the tenancy agreement it states gutters to be kept clear, the main issue of weeds was between us and next door. We ask next door a multiple number of times to have their gutters cleared but never did, we did have ours cleaned multiple times during the tenancy but is something that hadn’t been done lately. The landlord did not obtain multiple quotes and just went with one company. I found one for £65 cheaper with one phone call. Do we have any claim to this?

4. Bedroom door, these were untreated pine doors which on the original inventory stated would mark easily. My children when they were younger had marked the door with a pencil in a couple of places. We sanded these areas down and varnished the door before moving out, however the areas where we sanded are still visible. The landlord is claiming for a new door which the new tenant is going to fit, so is just charging us for the door. If the doors were not treated to start with and mentioned that they would mark easily how can they charge for a new door?

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Administrator

Hi Anon

It sounds like there are some contestable issues here – presumably your deposit was protected with a TDS scheme? Although your tenancy is pre 2007, if it was renewed and a new fixed term tenancy agreed then legally the deposit should have been transferred into a scheme. If so this should all go to the TDS internal dispute resolution service and they can decide. These dispute resolution services tend to use the check in and check out inventories – as well as any ‘proof’ such as photos etc – as a guideline so anything the landlord didn’t note on the check out inventory would probably have to be ignored (after all, that could easily have been done by someone other than you and what’s the point of a check out inventory if it’s not considered comprehensive).

If your deposit isn’t protected let me know.

Alex

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Tenant

Thanks for your advise we have finally come to an agreement so no tribunal required. 

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Tenant

 I have moved out on short notice from my landlord givene two months notice after two and half years. I work full time and have two kids on my own so this was very stressful. Despite this we did a week early.  after two and half years of paying on time and looking after the house. There have been massive issues with the house indcluding a rotten leaking roof and all white goods breaking down. Fridge after two days of moving in took 4 weeks to replace. Windowns at fron of house pouring in water. Heating contorls broke donw in winter took 10 days to replace. list is huge. They want to charge me for a tree I reported was dying with illness they refused to treat. Damage to a floor which was reported to agents and they did nothing, it was pianted floor and cheapily done so paint peeled. The list is huge. The inventory clerk was very happy with the cleaning and was shocked at the all the things that had gone wrong with the house and shocked that all the white goods had been replacved. He signed it off. The landlord who is now riping the house aprt is claiming for cleaning, the tree and the floor with the peeling paint. All of this seems very unfair. The deposit is in the scheme. I was manged by an agent and the deposit shou;ld be realised in 28 days which is next week. The agent is of course on side of landlord. Being very ynhelpful indeed. 

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Tenant

Soory about spelling my glasses broke in move getting mended today!!!

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