Unluckily, I lost my keys (electronic gate key, flat key and post box key) of my flat in an apartment house. I reported this loss immediately the next day (a Thursday) to the letting agency. They told me that it will take UP TO 1 WEEK to get another set of keys (I was already wondering back then why replacing keys takes so long, but thought it was my fault that I lost them) and that they don’t have a spare key to my flat. I was offered that the management opens my flat with the master key and so I could at least get some of my essential things. After the weekend, on Tuesday actually, I called the agency for an update regarding the keys and was told that I should get them the next day. On the next day I was told that they couldn’t get in contact with the management, who has the keys due to sickness of both persons (apparently there is no replacement). The same story I heard until Friday and result was that I was another weekend homeless. On the next Monday I was told that they couldn’t contact the landlord and there are still no keys. So, after 10 days I still can’t access my flat.
In addition, I am frustrated because I am always the person who has to call the letting agency and even if I ask me to give me a call back to update me, that never happened. And they didn’t give me the contact details of the management or landlord, so I couldn’t get in contact directly.
I tried to get help from citizen advice, but they were not very useful.
Anyways, I am going to write a formal complaint to the manager of the letting agency, but before that, I was wondering what my rights are as a tenant in this issue:
1) 1) Is the letting agency/landlord obligated to have spare keys for the case that the keys get lost?
2) 2) Is even 1 week for a set of replacement keys not too long? Is there any legal regulation how long it should take maximum?
3) 3) Can I ask to replace the lock to speed up the process? The original one can be put back after I would have the new keys.
4) 4) Can I ask for refund of rent? I just image if I would have to pay a stay in a hotel for the time it requires to get the new keys. But anyways, I think 1 week and more are not appropriate to wait for spare keys.