View Full Version : Moving out of house problems

12-07-2005, 14:40 PM

Im just going to move out of my flat at the end of the month and need a bit of advice.

I am on a AST with 4 other people - they are all staying in the house. I am moving out. In order to get my deposit back I have to clean my room. I was going to get the lounge carpet cleaned to ensure that I get it all back, but the guys in the house seem to think this isnt needed as they say theyre going to get it all sorted when they move out in a year. However as im moving out i dont want to be charged. Does anyone have any advice for me on this...

Now if say the landlord thinks there is £100 of cleaning to be done (which there isnt) will he charge me £25 (£100/4 people) or can he charge me the whole £100.

To confuse matters a bit the landlord sent a letter saying he wanted to inspect the property but did not say when. He just said before the tenancy expires- I assume if he gives us notice to do this he has to give me a specific day rather than just turning up?

Oh and one small thing I sent an email to his son saying that i would be moving out at the end of the tenancy but have never recieved a section 21. Does my email legally bind me to move out at the end of the agreement?

I only ask because my housemate didnt tell the landlord if he was leaving at the end of July and when he came back from holiday the landlord had rented his room out from the 1 August.. I didnt think he could this if we hadnt recieved a section 21.

Many Thanks

12-07-2005, 14:52 PM
OK....damage deposit....are you on a joint tenancy? So you are jointly and severally responsible? In which case ALL costs, including totals for all rooms regardless as to whos, are split between the 4 people. I do not think that if they say they will do it in a year this will be good enough, if you are on a joint agreement then a new agreement will need to be prepared if you leave, and so property needs sorting at end of current agreement. I could be totally wrong here but i think thats about right!

Yes landlord MUST give u a specific day with at least 24 hours notice and you must agree. Otherwise if he enters the property he is acting illegally.

An email to his son will not bind you with anything. You should send a recorded letter to the landlord.

12-07-2005, 14:55 PM
Actually I think it will be difficult even if you are not jointly responsible, as you are stilljointly responsible for communal areas and would divide the cost. If the current tenants stay and you leave and you do not get any deductions for communal areas then they may get deducted at end of second year for problems occuring from first year, while you would not. Have you discussed liability for communal areas with your landlord? I'm sure someone like Paul_F will know this kinda thing better than me :)

12-07-2005, 14:56 PM
regarding sending an email to his son. I think his son said that he will be finding new tenants - is this my email binding now. Although i must say if there are any problems with the property the son refuses to have anything to do with it and palms us of to the landlord.

12-07-2005, 14:58 PM
Regardless of whether the son is looking for new tenants or is the Prime Minister, nothing you say to him is binding, he is not the landlord and as such has nothing to do with him. TBH I'm not even sure if an email would be binding anyway. Any notification needs to be informed to the LANDLORD.

12-07-2005, 15:01 PM
Thanks for that. I must say the house isnt really in a mess, i just want to ensure i get my deposit back as the the landlord is being particulatry unreasonable. I just dont want to go through the effort and expense of sorting this out if i get charged anyway. Also the landlord wants to look round 2 weeks before the tenancy ends. Surely it makes sense for him to come round when ive left to assess the house as im not going to clean it throughouly until the last weekend. Is this a common request?

12-07-2005, 15:05 PM
Well, he can come and look round, and in fact this in beneficial to you. But he cannot make a judgement on deductions etc until you have actually left. I would want him to come and look 2 weeks earlier as then he can point out any areas that you then have time to fix. Is it a student let out of interest? Or professional? And what is the joint agreement status as mentioned above? Did you receive an inventory at the start of the tenancy?

12-07-2005, 15:09 PM
My check list for you moving out would be as follows, in order to ensure majority of money back:

- Let him look around 2 weeks prior, but also ask if he will look with you on last day with you present. He is not obligated to do this, but tends to be beneficial to both parties so hopefully he will.

- Take LOTS of photos. Get a digicam, or borrow one, and take photos of any potential problems, as well as the spotlessness of the rooms :P

- I would ask the other tenants to tidy the communal areas with you. As the only way I can see out of this is getting the landlord to agree to not make any deductions from yourself for communal areas, and the chances of this are very slim.

- Dont forget the hidden areas, like under beds, furniture etc, and skirting boards.

- Ask landlord if he has a checklist of what needs doing. If not, you could be really cheeky and ask a local letting agent for a checklist....I had one from my letting agent and it was very in depth, about 6 pages and very useful

Hope this helps

*edit* oh and dont underestimate cleaning charges....it would cost at least £200 to clean a medium sized house(4/5 ppl) depending upon the state etc. And this is with some notice, a landlord getting it done on very short notice will be more expensive, and they will probably add some admin charge as well.

12-07-2005, 15:11 PM
Just to take you through why i asked you about the email. Basically the landlord gave wanted us to tell him 2 months before the end of the tenancy (July 30) agreement if we were leaving. I sent this email to his son as the son turned up one night asking us what we were doing and the landlord started giving us a hard time for telling telling him soon enough. Anyway my other housemate (dave) left msges with the landlords son who assumed responsiblity for sorting out new tenants and told him to ring him back numerous times. The LL son didnt bother ringing back and after more phonecalls to no avail Dave went on holiday. Whilst on holiday LL son went and found a new tenant for his room assuming he was moving out. This guy got a bit miffed by this and is now moving in my room as im leaving. At nopoint in time have we had a section 21.
Appaling i think especially as the LL suddenly sent us a letter saying he was showing people round and said the house looked like a bombsite and that we should fold all our clothes up as someones wer drying over the bannister.

Any comments?

12-07-2005, 15:12 PM
Oh yeah thats the other thing , I have never seen an inventory....

12-07-2005, 15:15 PM
AFAIK he cannot MAKE you give him 2 months notice, although I would say its fair enough.

As regards tidying up etc, its your home and you can live how you want, and so he cannot demand you tidy during viewings. However it would be fair to do so, as it is his business after all and he would like to view a house that is fairly tidy. In my old house after 6 months of viewings we did stop tidying every time but thats another story :P

12-07-2005, 15:17 PM
You have never SEEN one or there wasnt one?? If there wasnt one then he virtually has no leg to stand on with regards to deductions from deposit.

Oh and can you read my above posts and answer my questions :P is it student let and is the tenancy joint?

12-07-2005, 15:50 PM
You don't have to move out just because you emailed his son. You must be given at least 2 months notice in the form of a section 21. There are two types, you must be served with the one relevant to be served DURING your fixed period, Section 21, 1, b. You don't have any notice served so you can stay put as long as you like.

With regards your friend going on holiday, he was illegally evicted and could create a stink if he wanted to.

You don't have to allow him to show people round, but being obstructive is likely to see you get hardly any deposit back. He should give you at least 24 hours notice in writing for this.

If you signed no inventory, he has no legal right to deduct anything from your deposit. However, getting it back will probably mean taking him to the small claims court if he refuses to hand it over.

12-07-2005, 16:07 PM
I have never seen an inventory and certainly didnt sign anything that looked like one...

I understand the above points and did use my common sense and do the guy a favour as i understand he has to rent it. However he does seem to be particaulry unreasonable.

Is there any legal deifference to there being an inventory and me not seeing it , and there not being one at all?

12-07-2005, 16:10 PM

its not a student let and tenancy is joint!!!

12-07-2005, 16:13 PM
Not really, my question was more about whether one of the other housemates HAD seen it. If NONE of you have seen it then he doesnt have a leg to stand on with any reductions. That said, if he actually does only make reasonable deductions for any problems you actually caused, I wouldnt chase it, it isnt worth it. Apart from anythin else, even if you are legally in the right, you arent so much morally :P

I would very strongly recommend having the communal areas spotless prior to an inspection. To be honest you really need to discuss the issue of communal areas and the like with your landlord.

Oh and dontget me wrong im not saying you arent being reasonable, but it is totally reasonable for him to send a letter and ASK to tidy prior to viewings. Besides, havent heard all that much so far about him being unreasonable towards you at least, fair enough the re-letting of your friends room was totally unacceptable, but from the sounds of it more through ignorance than maliciousness.

12-07-2005, 16:16 PM
Now then, if its a joint tenancy, TECHNICALLY speaking you are responsible for the state of the others BEDROOMS as well. Hmmmm....difficult one!! Anyone more enlightened than me got an answer for this one?

12-07-2005, 16:16 PM
As far as i am aware no one has seen an inventory.

12-07-2005, 16:20 PM
In which case he cannot deduct you anything. Actually thinking about it I dont think it matters if anyone else saw it, if you didnt sign it then he cannot deduct anything from you I dont think.