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Lucky_Me
13-02-2010, 10:18 AM
I have rented a property 10 month ago. Soon I realized that there are a lot of non-obvious problems to be fixed like leaking taps, mold in bathroom, flush in the toilet, heating problems, non-working lighting movement detector, washing machine producing water on the floor, door in shower not opening, furniture in need to repair, toilet seat apart from the toilet, awful sagged dirty sofa which I agreed to get rid of etc. Everything was made on cheapest possible parts and materials. I did not know about these problems when signed a contract and I had no much choice at the time.

I kept nicely asked the landlady to fix these problems, she were slowly replying sometimes sending someone fixing one problem a time and advising me to do it myself.
I have managed to fix some of the issues myself. Now I have received a notice that she does not want to extend the contract and I need to leave. And I have found the property advertised for the same price as before in the Internet. I have called her and she said that the reason for this is because I have called her to request a repair so many times (actually about once a month). I was doing it very politely and reasonably. I have not any payment arrears or any other fault.

I do not want to relocate now for many personal reasons, but it would be fine after a half a year. The contract is one year, so she can give me this notice now, but does not the law protect tenants in this situation? Do I have a priority in extension the contract if landlord is clearly advertises it to let, I agree to pay advertised rent and I did not do anything wrong? If I will have to relocate, can I recover the relocation costs from the landlord? Are there any other tips for these negotiations?
Could anyone give me some advice on this?

Thank you

Perplexed
13-02-2010, 10:30 AM
No, you cannot recover the relocation costs from LL and as you already realise he is within his rights to end the tenancy.

But if you are so unhappy and the problems are genuine (and not an excuse on your part to reduce or withhold the rent) then you should be happy to move.

Snorkerz
13-02-2010, 10:41 AM
No priority as such, but bear in mind that the Section 21 notice that has been issued to you is merely a warning that if you don't leave on the due date the landlady will apply for the courts for a possession order.

Until that possession order is obtained, you can not be evicted and the process will take around 2 months after the end of the tenancy.

There is a down-side. If you do stay beyond the end, and the landlady has to pay court fees &/or bailiffs fees to evict you, the chances are that you will be liable for those fees and you will not get good references.

p_cas
13-02-2010, 10:43 AM
The Agreement is for 12 months and either you or the LL can end the Agreement at that time. She doesn't need to give a reason as you, likewise, wouldn't need to give a reason if it were you who were ending the Agreement.

Why would you expect to have 'relocation' costs paid by the LL when the Agreement ends?

Not sure either why you would want to stay there given the list of complaints you have.

fletchj
13-02-2010, 10:45 AM
I do not want to relocate now for many personal reasons, but it would be fine after a half a year. The contract is one year, so she can give me this notice now, but does not the law protect tenants in this situation? Do I have a priority in extension the contract if landlord is clearly advertises it to let, I agree to pay advertised rent and I did not do anything wrong? If I will have to relocate, can I recover the relocation costs from the landlord? Are there any other tips for these negotiations?
Could anyone give me some advice on this?

Thank you

There are 2 basic questions before you start:

1. Is the tenancy in england or wales
2. Is the annual rent less than 25000

If the answer to both those is yes then you are on an AST and the rest of this post applies.

If the landlady has served a correct S21 notice on you then no you have no rights to extend. The landlady does not have to give any reason or justification as to why she wants you to move out. Basically you signed a contract for 12 months and the other party does not wish to extend it.

The fact that they are prepared to rent it out to someone else is irrelevant and no you have no rights to claim any moving costs from them.

Depending on you exact circumstances you can extend your stay by a few months possibly. The S21 must have been correctly served and be right in every detail. The dates must be right, the deposit must have been protected before it was issued. If any of these things is wrong you can wait until it gets to court and have it thrown out and the landlady will have to give you another 2 months notice.

If the S21 is correct you can wait for the 2 months to expire, refuse to move and let the landlady take you to court this will take a few weeks.

However, if you want to rent in the future you arn't going to get a reference if you do anything other play nice and move out as asked,

ram
13-02-2010, 11:11 AM
Why would you expect to have 'relocation' costs paid by the LL when the Agreement ends?


I feel for "Lucky_Me", as this is a typical case of jobs NEEDING to be done for "enjoyment" of the tenancy, but because the Landlord / lady does not want to spend money, and hopes the next tenant wont ask to have things fixed, she is evicting the tenant for this reason only.

Surly landlords cannot evict the tenant because they give a list of VALID repairs that need doing ? Forget the "She doesn't need to give a reason as you" ( which is of course correct ) but she IS evicting you because you gave a list of valid complaints, and I see Lucky_Me's discust at being evicted because the landlady does not want to spend money on repairs.

"I have called her and she said that the reason for this is because I have called her to request a repair so many times"

this is why many tenants are in fear of giving a list of repairs needed doing for FEAR of eviction. Others may be able to tell you what recourse you have for the landlady "stating" that Lucky_Me is asking to have repairs done, so she evicts him.

Lucky_Me
13-02-2010, 12:00 PM
Thanks everyone.

The reason why I want to stay more in the property is that I am going to buy a property within next months but two months are too little to do this (please correct me if I am wrong). And if I go into another contract, I will be locked ofr a year or a half in
So, it seems law does not protect tenants who need reasonable repair to be done.

But what are my options now?
The things which come into mind are the following:
- Nice "come back all is forgiven" letter to a LL - not sure it will work, I believe she has already paid something to an agent and they will do their best to get their commission from her.
- Every time someone comes for viewing I would be able to ask an agent very politely to fix all the repairs. Legally speaking, can I also talk to a prospective customer and express my opinion on property?
- Contact PM and newspapers saying law does not protect tenant's interests in this particular case? I think LL and agents would not be glad on this publicity and I will be able to negotiate a bit more months

Ericthelobster
13-02-2010, 12:13 PM
But what are my options now?Understand that the ball is entirely in the landlord's court, however morally wrong you might feel that to be. So I strongly suggest you don't try to apply pressure, such as slagging her or the property off in front of prospective new tenants as you'll get nowhere. I doubt there's anything that can be done to stop you doing that, but I guarantee that if you do things will turn nasty, and you won't gain from it. If anything, she'll want you out even more urgently, so she can remarket the property again after you've gone.

I think given that you only want to stay a few months more, your best bet is to appeal to her to allow this (on a month-month, periodic tenancy) and you'll then agree to go quietly, and won't (however much you might need to say it through gritted teeth) keep chasing her on the list. Say you'll be happy to co-operate with viewings at reasonable times, and will keep the place clean and tidy while that's going on.

In other words, appeal to the LL and give her reasons to want to let you stay on a bit; don't try to play hardball as it won't work.

Perplexed
13-02-2010, 12:19 PM
It shouldn't be difficult to find a short let somewhere nearby, furthermore in my experience conveyancing can take longer than you expect, so I think it would be prefereable to move than to go through the courts because you don't leave at the end of the tenancy.

Also, in my experience property purchases occasionally fall through, so what would you do, stay in the property until you find another one to buy and start the purchase process again from scratch?

Cipher
13-02-2010, 12:52 PM
@Lucky_Me

I understand your point of view, but if the Landlord wants you out (I think its better for everyone concerned if you did just that). You have your own agenda and the Landlord has theirs.

Have you found a property to buy? Or is it on a list of things to do this year?

Once you found a place - how quickly can you move (are your finances in place? Are you looking for a fixer upper or ready to move in home?).

I think you should move out and get another 6month tenancy agreement. If your new purchase property needs work doing to before you can move in you still have a base without the pressure from your landlord and living with the problems you have in the current property.

westminster
13-02-2010, 13:28 PM
- Contact PM and newspapers saying law does not protect tenant's interests in this particular case? I think LL and agents would not be glad on this publicity and I will be able to negotiate a bit more months
The law does protect tenant's interests. For example, s.11 of the Landlord & Tenant Act 1985 imposes statutory repairing obligations on landlords.
http://www.letlink.co.uk/letting-factsheets/factsheets/factsheet-11-landlords-repairing-obligations.html

And this link shows you the options for dealing with disrepair in private rental accommodation.
http://england.shelter.org.uk/get_advice/repairs_and_bad_conditions/repairs_in_private_lets

As a technique for negotiation, you won't get anywhere with threats to contact newspapers, nor would the newspapers be interested in the fairly low level of disrepair you describe.

Lucky_Me
13-02-2010, 15:18 PM
Could anyone tell me how much hassle is that for landlord to evict a tennant with eviction order?
In other words if I say let me know live a few more months or apply for eviction order, what a reasonable LL would choose?

Ericthelobster
13-02-2010, 16:12 PM
Could anyone tell me how much hassle is that for landlord to evict a tennant with eviction order?
In other words if I say let me know live a few more months or apply for eviction order, what a reasonable LL would choose?That's really hard to answer. As a landlord, I'd need to throw into the mix many other considerations, eg 'What will be the implications (financial or otherwise) be to me if I let T stay on?' 'Do I trust T to go when he says he will or am I just putting off the inevitable?' - these are probably more important to most LLs than the 'hassle' factor you're talking about.

HairyLandlord
14-02-2010, 06:47 AM
- Every time someone comes for viewing I would be able to ask an agent very politely to fix all the repairs.

For your information, you are not required to provide access to the property for the landlady or for anyone acting on her behalf, for viewings or for any other reason, while your tenancy is in force and you are performing all aspects of the tenancy.

If she gains access against your wishes, you can take action against her for harassment.

If she or the agent gain access while you are away, you can change the locks on the door to stop this and inform the landlady that you have done so and that she is in breach of the tenancy agreement, under the category of preventing you from having "quiet enjoyment".

mind the gap
14-02-2010, 07:22 AM
For your information, you are not required to provide access to the property for the landlady or for anyone acting on her behalf, for viewings or for any other reason, while your tenancy is in force and you are performing all aspects of the tenancy.

If she gains access against your wishes, you can take action against her for harassment.

If she or the agent gain access while you are away, you can change the locks on the door to stop this and inform the landlady that you have done so and that she is in breach of the tenancy agreement, under the category of preventing you from having "quiet enjoyment".

I am not sure this advice is really relevant here, since OP's declared intention is to make life difficult for the LL by pointing out the repairs he thinks are required, in front of the letting agent and prospective tenants.

The fact that the LL wants to conduct viewings, however, could be used by the OP as a bargaining device to try to persuade the LL to allow him to continue into a periodic tenancy until T (within an agreed period) finds another home and commits to moving out. T would need to give one month's notice, during which time LL could conduct viewings. This arrangement would only work though if LL trusted T to move out when he promises. Given the absence of goodwill which currently exists between them I am not sure that would be the case.

havensRus
14-02-2010, 07:29 AM
If she or the agent gain access while you are away, you can change the locks on the door to stop this and inform the landlady that you have done so and that she is in breach of the tenancy agreement, under the category of preventing you from having "quiet enjoyment".

not sure this will achieve anything, other than more aggravation for both parties.
OP, its not advisable, and not your business to tell viewers about the faults. It can be quite awkward for the agent and the viewer. If LL already wants you out, do you think putting off prospectives will make the situation any better?

The advice given by Ericthelobster is sound and you'd be adviced to follow it.

HairyLandlord
14-02-2010, 14:34 PM
I am not sure this advice is really relevant here, since OP's declared intention is to make life difficult for the LL by pointing out the repairs he thinks are required, in front of the letting agent and prospective tenants.

The fact that the LL wants to conduct viewings, however, could be used by the OP as a bargaining device to try to persuade the LL to allow him to continue into a periodic tenancy until T (within an agreed period) finds another home and commits to moving out. T would need to give one month's notice, during which time LL could conduct viewings. This arrangement would only work though if LL trusted T to move out when he promises. Given the absence of goodwill which currently exists between them I am not sure that would be the case.


I am pointing out the rights that the tenant has and which they may be unaware of.
If and how they wish to use them is entirely up to them, but since no-one pointed this aspect out to the OP, I thought someone should, since it would give the tenant some time by delaying the moving date of the next tenant or at least the exit date of the OP.

The effect on the LL/agent, if the OP chooses to exercise those rights, is entirely immaterial and not for the OP to worry about, since they have clearly ended, in their mind, their somewhat dissatisfied relationship with their shortsighted, miserly and petty landlady.