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Moving out - issues/damage but where do I stand?

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48 views 1 replies latest reply: 20 November 2016
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Tenant

I am about to hand in my months notice on my periodic tenancy (have lived here for 2.5 years). There are three issues which I am concerned the estate agent will pick up on at the final inspection, even though I have notified them of the issues at the time they happened. 

1. the timer for the immersion heater has never worked, and the electric is Economy 7. I asked the estate agent shortly after moving in if it could be repaired, they said they’d sort it out (they didn’t). I asked again during two separate periodic inspections, and the estate agent noted it and said they’d get in touch with the landlord. Well after asking three times and no joy, I just got on with it and switched the heater on and off myself during the E7 times.

2. Last year I discovered gnaw marks/damage at the bottom of the bathroom door (interior). No other signs of pests/rodents. I keep the bathroom door closed to prevent steam travelling which is probably why the little sod was gnawing to get out! Looked around the bathroom and discovered how it got in, the toilet pipe disappears into a gaping hole in the wall at the side of the loo, and the lino at the entrance to the hole was a bit chewed too. Clearly I cant be responsible for an easy access to critters that was there when I moved in? Phoned E.A to explain what I had seen, sent photos as requested of the door and suspect entry access, no further instruction as to repair just “keep us informed if you see anything else”.

3. There is a tap outside the flat, and the control /stop tap for this is located inside behind the washing machine, as in directly behind it (discovered by process of elimination) So, after reading the horrors of winter pipes, last November I did the responsible thing and went to close the tap to prevent the pipe freezing/bursting. To do this I had no option but to move the washing machine forward a few inches, when I moved it back, saw the linoleum had a small cut/tear. There is a prominent lip beneath the lino and seems the washing machine has pinched the lino against the lip, cut it (its a really straight neat cut) and then tore it a little. Emailed EA to tell them what happened and supplied photo. Received no response so wasn’t sure what to do after that.

I understand tenants are liable for damage caused by negligence but I really don’t feel I have been negligient here – the damaged door was shut to prevent moisture in the flat and I WOULD have been negligient to not protect the outdoor tap – am I still responsible for carrying out/paying for the lino and the door to be repaired? They would only be small repairs but I would like to know where I stand.

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Tenant

It seems like most of these are okay, with MAYBE some contribution towards the linoleum if the landlord decides to replace it after the tenancy. 

Make sure the property is clean enough when you move out and try to fix as much small things (like light bulbs, power sockets, blocked drains, wall marks, etc) as possible before leaving. 

The first two definitely fall in the landlord’s pile of responsibilities as they regard repairs and maintenance that’s not resulted from YOUR actions. 

Negotiate with the EA or landlord about possible deductions. If the EA is being unreasonable, you can always open a dispute at the tenancy deposit scheme where your deposit is protected. 

Here is some reading:

http://www.thetenantsvoice.co.uk/advice_from_us/deposit-protection-schemes/

http://www.thetenantsvoice.co.uk/advice_from_us/deposit-disputes-3/

http://www.thetenantsvoice.co.uk/advice_from_us/the-return-of-your-deposit/

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