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jxmac18
05-07-2005, 00:34 AM
I have a tenant one month into a 6 month AST, and is already causing problems. There have been a number of blameless repairs carried out costing me thousands of pounds, much of which I cannot claim back. I have also spent thousands on renovating the property to a very high standard.

Within a week a smoke alarm and carbon monoxide alarm were pulled down and dismantled, and recently a bath tap was pulled out causing a leak through the ceiling below.

He has been continuously argumentative and verbally abusive, threatening me on occasion over the phone. He only speaks to me to complain about something. I've been fair with everyone, but he is really pushing my buttons.

With the smoke alarms, I had to advise all the tenants to have them refitted which they failed to do and I then had to charge them for the decorator to fit a new alarm. Although I've now verbally advised one of the tenants that I won't be deducting from their deposit.

With the bath taps I have taken the plumbers report that this was intentional and not accidental damage, and written to the tenants that they may all be liable for repairs.

Without conclusive proof, do I have to deduct repairs from all the tenants deposits. The other tenants have had enough, and I don't want to upset them further. Is it acceptable to take the other tenants at their word given that they also reported the damage to me. Also I do not believe they would have been able to physically cause the damage.

The letters are sent to ensure even-handedness and get some of the costs paid for, even if I later verbally negate the agreement with the tenants I'm convinced are not causing any problems.

Having dealt with him over the past month, I am 100% convinced he is causing the damage (I have also had much feedback from another tenant regarding his attitude), can I charge him with the whole repair bill. Ideally I would like him to hand in his notice before he causes any more problems, but fear I'm stuck until I can serve an S21.

I was in the process of buying another property, but had to pull out as this one tenant has proved so stressful and time consuming, I would not have the energy to setup another property until he has left.

Should I also keep a diary of my dealings with him, would this help if an eviction was required?

regards
Jack

RichieP
05-07-2005, 08:38 AM
Using a section 21, you will have to wait until the initial 6 month tenancy has ended, which is a long time to put up with this behaviour.

You could try Ground 13 under the Housing Act, causing damage to your property, and possibly Ground 14, causing nuisance to the other tenants.

However, you need the other tenants to be prepared to back you up and provide evidence that he did it, and they need to be prepared to give evidence in court. They may do this if you tell them it's the only way you can continue without having to charge them for the damage he is causing.

have a look at the grounds here:
http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/grounds_for_possession.htm

MrWoof
05-07-2005, 16:03 PM
No extra to Richie's advice but as far as a diary is concerned YES, most definitely. Keep copies of all letters and emails you send and keep replies, make notes of telephone calls and write confirming letters immediately afterwards. Any messages left on voicemail, record onto a dictaphone. Paranoid......maybe........Feel on top of things....definitely. People say things over the phone that they would like to retract later, this is why so many companies now record phone calls 'for training purposes'.

MrShed
12-07-2005, 13:37 PM
I would NOT follow Mr Woofs advice on one section he has given....AFAIK it is illegal to record a telephone conversation without at least informing both parties. That is why so many companies do have that disclaimer before you actually speak to someone. However, I believe this is "intentionally". Therefore if a conversation was to "accidently" be recorded onto your answering machine etc, then that may be ok! Could be wrong but I'm sure this is the case.

*edit* DOH apologies mr woof, answering machine messages would be ok, thought you said phone calls! But what ive said above still stands

davidjohnbutton
13-07-2005, 05:48 AM
It is not against the law to record a telephone conversation so long as at least ONE of the parties knows it is being recorded - there is no obligation to inform the other party. The test is satisfied by the person recording the call being aware it is being recorded.

I routinely record phone convs. where I am either in a contentious situation or where evidence needs to be gathered and have before now transcripted taped calls and used the tape/transcript in evidence successfully.

It IS illegal to record a telephone conversation where neither party on the line knows it is being taped EXCEPT where phone tapping is specifically authorised in a criminal evidence-collecting role.

MrShed
13-07-2005, 08:40 AM
Correct. However, any recording of this nature would be inadmissable in court, as you must have the permission of both parties if you are able to make the conversation available to a third party. You do not have to ask if the recording is for personal records ONLY.

*edit* sorry just seen that you have used it in court. Is a court of law an exception to this rule then?