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jollyhelen
31-03-2008, 22:47 PM
Hi All,

This is my first post and basically I am looking for some advice.

I rent a flat but with the permission of my landlord I sublet one of my spare rooms. I have had a problem with a tenant whose contract has ended, to do with deposits so wondered if anyone could help!?!

Basically, when my landlord agreed to let me sublet he just gave me a blank copy of an Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement to use and I did not at the time really think about it. After some research tonight I have discovered that I should just have a license as I am a live in landlord and my tenant does not have exclusive access to any part of the flat.

What I initially want to know is, does this make the contract I had previously drawn up with him invalid?

The reason I ask is that he is trying to con me out of money by saying that he paid me a £350 deposit when he actually paid me £250. He did not ask for receipts and as I do this casually I did not offer (stupidly I now realise). The wording on the contract is rather ambiguous as although the rent is £250 there is also a charge of £100 for bills so I lump it all in together so where it says on the contract that a deposit is payable it just says '1 months rent' and I have (stupidly again) written in £350 against the amount of monthly rent required. So I need to know how well this will hold up if he tries to take me to small claims court!

I would not put this past him as he really had it in for me, he also came in tonight demanding whether his deposit had been in a protection scheme as this was the law - now this I do know about so I told him that as I am a live in Landlord I am not required to put his deposit in a scheme (I am pretty sure this is right?!) but he was throwing all kinds of jargon at me which he had obviously googled today as he was not concerned about any of this when he originally moved in!

Finally, we offered him £250 is cash as his returnable deposit but he refused and it all got a bit heated and we had to eject him from the flat and so basically he has left with no deposit and I am concerned about what he may do.

He is welcome to the £250 which he is rightfully owed but he seemed determined to get more out of me.

Any advice on this subject - especially that of the contract and legal postions, would be greatly appreciated!

jeffrey
01-04-2008, 09:15 AM
As you are a resident L, your sub-T cannot have an AST no matter what the form says. At most, he could be a lodger or licensee; his contractual rights defined by the form might still operate but without it being a tenancy- so, no, it's not wholly invalid.