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View Full Version : Yet another damage deposit question!



Ericthelobster
01-11-2005, 11:12 AM
Tenant has damaged an expensive item - eg a carpet or large mirror - so landlord can deduct the cost of replacing said item with a like-for-like replacement, less an allowance according to the age of the item.

However, what if the LL decides not to replace the item, and either just live with it or have it repaired relatively cheaply (so the next tenant has an inventory showing, eg 'mirror with crack' or 'vinyl floor with patch' or something). Is it then legitimate to still charge the outgoing tenant the replacement cost of the item, even if that money has not actually been spent? If not, what should happen?

MrShed
01-11-2005, 11:14 AM
As I understand it, from something mjpl said, you CAN do this ONLY IF it explains that this may be done in the AST. Otherwise, you can only charge for actual expenses.

Hope this helps.

PS eric check your PM :p

mjpl
01-11-2005, 12:39 PM
the word you are looking for is compensation. If your agreement does not specifiy the right to compensation then you cannot deduct monies without supporting proof that is has been used to rectify damages.

Ericthelobster
01-11-2005, 17:16 PM
That makes sense; rather what I thought. I suppose where I'm coming from is would it boil down to the LL saying "OK, if we get the mirror replaced it will cost you £249.75 off the deposit, for which receipts will be provided; alternatively (if the tenant prefers) we'll just knock off £75 to compensate for the cracked mirror, and call it quits"

Or would that be wrong/nefarious/illegal or something?!

mjpl
01-11-2005, 17:45 PM
Bear in mind that compensation is not a tax deductible expense.

MrShed
01-11-2005, 23:02 PM
Erm....I would suspect that would be ok if the tenant agrees, but I would await further confirmation! You may need to draft an agreement for the tenant to sign stating that this is ok in order for there to be no recourse however.

PaulF
02-11-2005, 17:14 PM
You don't need the tenant's agreement if the deposit is held as "agent for the landlord" or similar wording; only when it's as "stakeholder" need the outgoing tenant be consulted.

MrShed
02-11-2005, 17:18 PM
Agreed paul, but I was thinking further ahead....if you do not have the tenants agreement to take a lower figure "compensation" amount rather than the full amount, then surely small claims court would award the money to the tenant?