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Landlord problems - Advice needed

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1378 views 3 replies latest reply: 08 January 2015

Hi all,

I’m looking for some advice with a problem ex-landlord.

The overview of the situation is as follows:

I moved into a property on the 1st of March, moved out on the 22nd.

My reasons being – the property was not in a ‘liveable’ condition – damp, exposed electricals etc.

In my time at the flat – I replaced the damaged locks on the doors as the property was not fully secured, fixed electrical faults. One issue that arose was that I cracked a tile when trying to fit a shower – with the permission of the landlady.

Now. The problems start with the fact that she gave me written promise that the flat would be ready to move into by the 1st March – it wasn’t the condition was deplorable – I have picture evidence, it took her 15 days to get someone to come and look at the damp issue by which time I was looking for another property as I was tired of her lies and the property was not liveable, my posessions were sitting in storage.
She asked me to take days off work – for workmen to turn up and fix the problems, they didn’t turn up some days.

She agreed in writing that on departure of the premises I will not be liable to pay further rent past 31st of March 2014.

She verbally agreed that it was ok for my wife to keep her 2 house rabbits at the property.

During the 22 day tenure I stayed at the property for only 2 nights, the rest of the time I had to spend sleeping on my inlaws floor as the property heating didn’t work and the water was limited, I then had to stay in hotels until the 1st April until I moved into a new property.

She also did not protect my deposit or provide me with the relevant prescribed information, she refused to tell me where the deposit was held and was aggressive at any point I asked her.

Now, we took her to court for the above reason (Deposit protection) and won, the court ordered her to pay out x1 deposit plus court fees.

She is refusing to pay and today she has instead put a letter through my door requesting that I PAY compensation to her for :

the 6 months rent up to the agreed break clause up until she was able to rent the property out – however she agreed In writing I would not be liable past the 1st month.

She is also claiming I broke the clause by keeping pets on the premises- which again she agreed to – saying she had to fumigate the place twice via pest control – invoicing me for this.

She claims she had to replace the locks even though she saw my work and agreed to this to – verbally. The locks never worked properly before I moved in, she told me this.

Then she quotes me a huge amount for repair of a single cracked tile – £650 to be precise even though I sourced her the correct tile for £2 and got a quote for repair for less than £90 – the three workmen I put in touch with her refused to work for her as they deemed her too aggressive and rude.

She also retained £150 of an unprotected deposit.

She has requested me to pay her an amount exceeding £8000 within 14 days.

My question is, where legally do I stand on this?
She was in agreement with everything that transpired.
Does anyone know the procedure on her refusal to pay a court order?

I’m angry as the 14 days she has given me is over the Christmas period – I feel this has been done purposely as I’m unable to find legal help until the first week in January.

Many Thanks in advance.


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Hi Doug

Your best bet I think is to get some advice either from Shelter or from the Citizen’s Advice Bureau. There are also free legal advice clinics all over the country that might be open between now and the start of Jan – there’s a list here.

There is also this article on enforcing judgments which might be useful in terms of any money she hasn’t paid.

Remember that she’s most likely going to have to produce receipts for any works she claims have been done to prove the cost, she can’t just pull figures from the air. You could request these from her now as proof. 

I’m not sure what kind of letter she has sent you, whether it’s the start of legal proceedings or just a letter, but remember that if you don’t pay/respond in that time there will most likely be another step between this and something more serious. She might also be trying her luck (she certainly sounds the type!). Ask Shelter for some advice on all this as they most likely have a lot of experience of landlords who behave in this way. You could also ask them about the 14 days – it would be usual for this to not include bank holidays – or it might actually mean ‘working days’ depending on the nature of the letter she has sent you –  but check with them.

Good luck



Oh wow… I had to read the post three times to get all the facts in… I’ll hold my comments for your ex-landlady.. 

Regarding your case, 

I’m pretty sure she failed to have an entry inventory inspection the same way she failed to protect the deposit. 

You said you have photographic evidence of the state of the property. Contact the Citizen Advice Bureau and supply these photos. I know the CAB can provide an emmergency inspection to rented properties in cases where landlords deny to maintain and repair, as per their legal responsibilities. 

Seeming your case is exactly so, you can have the CAB issue a condition report based on your photos. I’m not sure if they will take them for granted or will ask access to the property. The later might be difficult, since you’ve already moved out. 

Regardless, I’m pretty sure that you will win a case over the lack of maintenance and repair in the property. Having you already won one case against the same landlady for the deposit, I see an easy judgement. 

This is me going theoretical, but I think if you can prove the property was not good for living along with the lack of maintenance by your landlady, you can break the contract without the need to pay the extra 6 months. The damp condition can certainly help you prove the  property was hazardous and not safe for you. 

Having her already broken the contract conditions by not protecting the deposit and not repairing the property, I don’t think the court will rule anything in her favour. You, however, need to have this confirmed by someone with legal background. 


On the note of her refusing to pay, you can apply to the court again and see the help of bailiffs to enforce your debt collection. Furthermore, you can apply to the High Court with your already ruled judgement and seek their assistence to get your 1x deposit money back. 

The landlady can’t actually take 150 from the money the court has ruled her to return. Her doing so is basically stealing your money. 

In the link below you can contact directly to someone that can help you. Read the first chapter about money collection, it features the links and procedures you’re looking for.

Read the contract again and see if there is any pet clause in there. If there isn’t a prohibition for pets and you have her verbal agreement, you can safely dismiss this argument. If you have a written consent, you’re solid safe. 

You generally have to surrender some money for the repair of the tile you cracked, but it wont go as far as 650 pounds… Of course, only pay the sum when you’ve received the bill to be sure exactly what you’re paying for.. 

If you have her consent to change the locks and you haven’t damaged the property in the process, you can safely ignore that as well. 


My personal advice would be to contact the CAB immediatelly and get the facts straight with them about what you can pursue and what now. Them go after her on all points and chapters you can. 

Also, ignore her demand for whatever payment there is, except for the tile repair. If it goes to court on pretext of rent arrears, present all the facts and you should be safe from prosecution. Just to be safe, ask about this problem when you contact the CAB. 

Hope this helps. It’s a rought start of the new year, but all should get better soon. It wont replace the stress caused to you, but  I think the compensation you’re about to receive will at least pay for you expenses through the  whole story. 

P.S. If you need some end of tenancy cleaning done, don’t hesitate to hit me up or visit my company website. All the best !


Audrey @ Move Out Mates – The one stop shop for tenancy cleaning and relocation services. 

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