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Horendeous Expereince Advise Required

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399 views 6 replies latest reply: 05 August 2015

Hello All.
We have been private renting a property via a Letting Agent (LA) for 2 years, first 12 months was contracted, then this expired no other paper work was signed or agreed with, so assumed this went on to a rolling month by month. We have never missed a days rent and have had regular inspections every 3 months where by the LE at no point was there any issues raised or points of concern mentioned in how we managed and maintained the condition of the property.

Our deposit was £800 + £750 Rent Upfront.

At the very end of May 2015 we were issued a section 21 notice, advising us the Landlord as taking ownership of property on the 29th July. Due to our naivety and lack of knowledge on housing regulations and in the way this was conveyed to us, we assumed that we were being evicted. We now know what section 21 actually means however….

Our monthly rent is taken on the first of each month, due to my wife finding out she was pregnant and myself suffering from a long term disabling medical condition which means i struggle to walk or bare any weight through my legs we panicked and found a new property that weekend. We called the LE up and wrote to them informing them that our last day in the existing property will be the 29th June, They received this written notice, hand posted through letter box on that weekend, thus they would have picked it up on Monday 1st June. We then proceeded to sort the house out, and handed keys in on the 22nd June (existing LE provided references to new LE) We heard nothing for 2 or three weeks when we got a phone call explaining that rent had not ben paid for July. We tried to explain the above and LE denied ever receiving letter. LE made entry into the property and made initial inspection.

LE is claiming that we broke contract by not giving due notice, and that they were not happy with the general state of the property. We agreed to revisit the property during July in order rectify issues, and offered to pay an additional days rent for the inconvenience caused. After much trouble LE gave us access to the property in the last week of July where we made good our remedial work. We held the keys for a single week or less than 7 days during July.

On the 29th of July the LE performed a final inspection and has provided a list of problems and issues reflecting to both the condition of the property, this list is extensive and has taken us by complete surprise, I have agreed with some points within this list and offered to pay for a cleaning company to come in this weekend to remedy the items that I agree are not up to standard. However LE has refused our offer and has stated the have already contracted a cleaning company to resolve the issues and ill will be billed over £300 for cleaning alone.

They have also stated that we had access to the property for the entire month of July and these issues, which where not raised before the 29th should have been resolved then, this again is not true.

This list provided on the 29th also includes issues which where contained within the original Inventory provided by the LE to us, and our original amendment to it when we moved in. They are expecting us to pay for issues previous to our tenancy.

LE is now billing us for decoration of the property, replacement of carpets, replacement of lock on front door, replacement for back door, the decorating of the master bedroom. The list goes on and on and is causing us major distress

We as a tenant at every juncture have offered to resolve any problems or issues. but no matter what we have done its simply not good enough.

Can anyone advise on where we stand with any of the above? We feel as though we are going to have to pay £1000’s we simply do not have this sort of money. I’m happy to surrender the Deposit, but faced with these other potential bills we are deeply worried.

Any question please ask we will be happy to answer. We look forward to your replies…



Additional Information.

We have now been informed that we have to pay for the bathroom room ceiling to be painted and gloss the stairs. neither of which have been mentioned in any inspection.

The running total is now as follows
Months Rent £750
Replacing Stairs & Landing Carpet £700
Decorating Bathroom and Stairs £350

We have been told to expect other costs.



Hello Geoff

Your landlord cannot take anything from your deposit without your consent – that money remains yours until you agree to a deduction or until the tenancy deposit protection scheme holiding the deposit finds that a suggested deduction is fair. So, firstly, which tenancy deposit protection scheme is holiding your deposit? The first step is to raise a dispute with them and let them handle the process.

If your deposit is not lodged with one of the three main schemes then your landlord has broken the law. This means you would be entitled to the return of your entire deposit and compensation of 1-3 times the amount of the deposit. It also gives you great bargaining power “you – the landlord – have broken the law. Return the entire deposit, without any deductions, or face a claim you’ll lose for not fulfiling the most basic of landlord requirements.”

Your deposit is for damage ONLY. This doesn’t mean redecorating – that’s for the landlord to pay for – and it doesn’t mean they get to replace the carpets because there’s some light wear and tear. In fact, they can’t charge you at all for wear and tear, only for something you have actually damaged.

I’d go back to the landlord and find out if the deposit is registered with one of the three schemes. If not, then simply demand the return of your entire deposit or go ahead and seek compensation from the landlord. If it is registered with a scheme then remind the landlord that they will have to justify all their costs as reasonable using evidence gathered before you moved out (date and time stamped). If they can’t do that then a scheme is very unlikely to find in their favour.



Ps I think because you have shown some willingness to hand over money and because you’re obviously in a slightly vulnerable position this landlord is taking the proverbial. They aren’t within their rights to do this no matter how much they demand, bully or shout. 

If you do want to pursue a claim against the landlord for an unprotected deposit, here’s how.


Pps I don’t understand why you owe a month’s rent? Surely if you were given a two month section 21 notice that required possession of the property on 29th July then that officially brought the contract to an end on 29th July?


Hello AP, thank you so much for your comments.
I have managed to get in touch with the DPS and our deposit is with them. They have been very helpful and helped us gain access to our account so we can contest the Letting Agents / Landlords claims.
To answer your question regarding the additional month rent, the answer is in two parts, I have since learned this. It’s still very disputable but the law on section 21 states it’s just a forewarning that the landlord wants to take ownership of the property on a set date, which has to be two months in advance of the being issued the notice. Technically It’s not an eviction notice, only the courts can evict you from a property. However we were naïve and didn’t have this knowledge when it was issued to us, and also in the way it was issued that we believed the LE/Landlord expected us to vacate asap and we had no option to comply.This brings us to the rent. The initial contract we signed was for 12month, which expired in December 2014, it is assumed that this contact if not renewed or signed for again proceeds in to a month by month rolling contract, with the standard notice period of 4 weeks. Thus, despite being issued Section 21 on the 29th of May for 2 months’ notice of repossession on the 29th July, Technically we were only contracted until the 30th of June, as we paid on the 30th of May for  Junes Rent in advance. Thus we handed in notice on the 30th May which was a Saturday, Making the 30th of June our final day.They received this notice on the returning to the office on Monday 1st June.  Due to the weekend they are claiming they didn’t receive notice till the 1st and thus 4 weeks’ notice takes us into July and thus due to the ‘contract’ you have to pay for the full month. So they are billing us for Julys rent also
I hope that clears the rent / date questions little?GT


Hi Geoff

No, it’s not an eviction notice but you do need a good reason not to comply with a section 21 notice as most tenancies will require you to leave when given two months notice. Strictly speaking the landlord has to get a possession order to actually remove you but – unless there’s a good reason or the landlord hasn’t complied with certain conditions – your legal right to occupy ends on the expiration of the section 21 notice. If you’re just waiting to be evicted then you’re likely to end up paying costs if the landlord does have to go to court to get rid of you.

In terms of the notice, what does it say in your tenancy agreement about when notice is received? A periodic tenancy (the type of tenancy your tenancy becomes when the old one expires) takes its terms from the previous tenancy so this will still apply. If it states that for a notice to be received it needs to be sent by tracked postage so you have proof of receipt then you’ll have to do this for it to be effective, for example.


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