Landlord/Agent not honouring offer conditions | The Tenants' Voice
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Landlord/Agent not honouring offer conditions

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164 views 3 replies latest reply: 25 July 2017
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Tenant

So I’ve recently moved to a new flat. It’s a great flat, great agent, landlord’s a little paranoid over damages but I’m reasonably ok with that (she put buffer pads on all the doors and chairs to prevent scuffs after I put my offer in). The problem is that when I viewed the property there were two large wooden wardrobes both of which were quite heavily damaged and I asked to be removed before moving in but they weren’t.

 

So to provide the details the advert stated that the landlord is flexible over furnishings and happy to let the property furnished, unfurnished or part furnished plus I had a verbal offer (sadly not in writing) to rent the property with these two cupboards removed from the agent. The agent informed me that this is fine and shouldn’t be a problem because the landlords flexible over furnishings. All great so I put the offer in with this as a condition and the landlord accepted. Unfortunately when I came to move in the two cupboards were still there. I contacted the agent who then explained they hadn’t actually discussed this with the landlord and it turned out later that she didn’t want to remove the furniture after all and wasn’t flexible with furnishings after all. She even wanted me not to move any of mine in and only use what she provided for me, fortunately that was rejected because she doesn’t actually have that right.

 

So because the flat is simply unusable with the furniture in place I offered to pay for the furniture to be removed, no go, I then offered to pay for the furniture to be removed and stored until the end of the tenancy, no go, so then I offered to buy the furniture off her at a reasonable price (to be negotiated), still a no go. The problem is that I can’t fit all my own furnishings into the flat with these two cupboards present but I’m not sure what I can do if the landlord simply won’t allow them to be removed.

 

EDIT: In my discussions with the agent they have agreed that it was discussed that these furnishings would be removed and that they agreed to this however as they never asked the landlord it never formed a part of the formal offer, how is that my responsibility that they didn’t pass on all details of the offer to the landlord. My sympathies are with the landlord they obviously want to keep the furnishings in the property but surely this now falls into the agents respnsibility and I shouldn’t be penalised because of it. Also when I signed the contract I was assured the furnature was removed but it obviously was not.

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Tenant

Hello, 

Obviously, there is no way to remove the furniture without confrontation, so here is what you can do: 

Option B: 

You disregard the landlord’s wish and move the furniture to storage. There is no physical way for them to stop you from doing it, AND, if you return the furniture at the end of the tenancy at the same or better quality, the landlord will have a very hard time actually claiming something from your deposit. 

Option A:

You seem to agree to pay for the furniture at reasonable price. In this case, you can pay for the disposal of the furniture. When the tenancy ends you can negotiate a fair price to be discounted from your deposit. 

 

However, you can then make a claim that you have been mislead into a bad deal by the letting agent and have them liable for the cost of the deductions. In the end you pay only for the waste disposal service. 

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Tenant

Hi, thanks for the reply.

 

Fortunately the landlord reconsidered once I was able to speak to them directly and bypass the agent, turns out they were trying to play us both for fools so it was a perfectly happy and reasonable ending.

 

That said however I would argue that the above options are not particularly good advice for anyone that finds themselves in a similar situation, in particular option A that recommends disposing of the furniture then claiming you were mislead by the agent. In my digging you CAN claim that you were mislead based on an advertisement or verbal offer and this can be grounds to file a complaint with your local authority. HOWEVER if you choose to remain in the property and continue to pay rent then you have accepted these misleading terms and have waived the right to this complaint. Thus if you were to claim you were mislead at the end of the tenancy you frankly don’t have a leg to stand on (are you saying you didn’t notice the furniture you threw out until the end?) and without the original furnishings to help prove their actual value you are very much left with the landlords word, they could potentially claim the entire deposit for the cupboards alone and as you intentionally removed or destroyed the items you’re pretty much stuffed. 

 

As for option B whilst this is probably the safer of the two options it still isn’t recommended. As much as the landlord can’t physically stop you from removing said items they have directly expressed their wish for them to remain in the property. As you again would be paying rent and thus accepting the furnishings you may be in breach of the tennancy for removing the items. 

 

 

As mentioned from my digging the best course of action is negotiation however if this doesn’t resolve it then it’s probably better to launch formal complaints against the misrepresentation/false advertising than it is to start scheming behind the landlords back.

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Tenant

Hello, 

The only thing that WE actually RECOMMEND is to ensure you get written permission from the landlord to engage in actions that require such permission, like removing furniture and equipment from the rented property. Of course, that can only happen with negotiation and we recommend you to do it BEFORE signing any tenancy agreement. 

The options above are not PERFECT and each has their own drawbacks, one more than the other. HOWEVER, given that you’ve signed a tenancy agreement, which is binding and there is little chance to get it invalidated, AND you can’t get permission to do what you want AND the property is unusable to you without doing the furniture removal, you’re not left with too many options. 

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