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Solictors Are Bruising Us For Some Money

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Our landlord died in December 09 and our rental standing order was returned by the bank a couple of days after it was paid at the start of January. The standing order continued to be returned. When the solicitors gave us payment details for their account (start of April 2010), we stopped the standing order and set up a new one for them.

They think we owe them for the returned standing orders. We think we don't because we did not have "an address to serve notices", and the LTA goes on about rent being considered as not due when no address has been furnished. This is an extract of what arrived today:-

You were contacted by us by letter dated xx January 2010, as soon as we had been instructed in respect of the administration of the estate, to confirm our involvement in this matter. In addition to this, for the purposes of avoidance of any doubt, you were served a formal notice of an address for service persuant to Section 48 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1987 on xx April 2010. These notices are retrospective in effect and therefore apply to the payments required to be made for January, February and March. You had notice of where the arrears should be paid and you cannot therefore rely on this legislation to deny your obligations under your tenancy

Thoughts and opinions?

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Pay what you owe.

Yes, I second that myself actually. In fact, we have paid everything that we owe and on time.

This point is about what the contract actually stiplulates what each party must do. Now, a part of that is that a tenant must be given an address at which to serve notice. If there is no such address, then - and the act explictly says this - any rent due will be considered as not due.

Now, if our landlard had been competent then maybe we would've overlooked such a point. However, he was terrible. Never once was the gas safety cert renewed on time. We had no electricity for 3 days, during a time when our baby was 11 months old so we had to bring her from the nursery into our room because the monitors are mains driven. This also meant no hot water because the gas boiler is electricty powered.

An other occasion, we also had no hot water for a period of 4 days. Both of these things came about as a result of a lack of maintenance coupled with a can't-do attitude. These are just the highlights, there is a whole catalogue of incompetence. We also had tradesmen knocking on the door to chase unpaid bills. Which was quite awkward for us because we had had to engage them in the first place because the landlord was unable/unwilling to make the arrangements himself.

Yet still our standing order dutifully ran on time and in full every month.

Here is the relevant text of the Act:

48 Notification by landlord of address for service of notices

(1)A landlord of premises to which this Part applies shall by notice furnish the tenant with an address in England and Wales at which notices (including notices in proceedings) may be served on him by the tenant.

(2)Where a landlord of any such premises fails to comply with subsection (1), any rent or service charge otherwise due from the tenant to the landlord shall (subject to subsection (3)) be treated for all purposes as not being due from the tenant to the landlord at any time before the landlord does comply with that subsection.

(3)Any such rent or service charge shall not be so treated in relation to any time when, by virtue of an order of any court, there is in force an appointment of a receiver or manager whose functions include the receiving of rent or (as the case may be) service charges from the tenant.[/Quote]

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Yes, I second that myself actually. In fact, we have paid everything that we owe and on time.

This point is about what the contract actually stiplulates what each party must do. Now, a part of that is that a tenant must be given an address at which to serve notice. If there is no such address, then - and the act explictly says this - any rent due will be considered as not due.

A bank account number is not an address.

For your arguement to work you would need to show that the old address was invalid for the period in question. You don't appear to have such evidence (even if it was)

tim

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A bank account number is not an address.

For your arguement to work you would need to show that the old address was invalid for the period in question. You don't appear to have such evidence (even if it was)

tim

plus you are confusing two seperate issues - the rent you pay, and the costs/resource impacts of the landlord not providing a service. You should have, the minute the electric went off, sent an email/letter stating the action you would take if it wasn't fixed by X date. That's what I did in 45 degrees when our aircon broke down -emailed my landlord the same day stating that if it wasnt fixed within 24 hours the flat was not fit for human habitation and we would move into a hotel and bill him.

Hey presto, portable aircon units turned up at his expenses in 12 hours and it was fixed three days later.

If you are renting, then use your rights as a renter and make the landlord keep up his end of the bargain. But don't try not to pay the rent.

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Yes, I second that myself actually. In fact, we have paid everything that we owe and on time.

This point is about what the contract actually stiplulates what each party must do. Now, a part of that is that a tenant must be given an address at which to serve notice. If there is no such address, then - and the act explictly says this - any rent due will be considered as not due.

Now, if our landlard had been competent then maybe we would've overlooked such a point. However, he was terrible. Never once was the gas safety cert renewed on time. We had no electricity for 3 days, during a time when our baby was 11 months old so we had to bring her from the nursery into our room because the monitors are mains driven. This also meant no hot water because the gas boiler is electricty powered.

An other occasion, we also had no hot water for a period of 4 days. Both of these things came about as a result of a lack of maintenance coupled with a can't-do attitude. These are just the highlights, there is a whole catalogue of incompetence. We also had tradesmen knocking on the door to chase unpaid bills. Which was quite awkward for us because we had had to engage them in the first place because the landlord was unable/unwilling to make the arrangements himself.

Yet still our standing order dutifully ran on time and in full every month.

Here is the relevant text of the Act:

I loathe landlords, but I'm afraid you do sound like the tenant from hell.

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For your arguement to work you would need to show that the old address was invalid for the period in question. You don't appear to have such evidence (even if it was)

tim

Now that is an interesting point. He moved around quite a lot and never updated us with an address. So the address probably was invalid ... but I really can't think of a way of actually proving that.

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There is a difference between "due" and "payable". The rent was always payable, but not due until the correct notice was served. Once the notice was served the rent that was payable became due. Section 48 does does no more than suspend payment until compliance.

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There is a difference between "due" and "payable". The rent was always payable, but not due until the correct notice was served. Once the notice was served the rent that was payable became due. Section 48 does does no more than suspend payment until compliance.

Fair do's, we have notified the solictor that payment will be forthcoming.

I loathe landlords, but I'm afraid you do sound like the tenant from hell.

I do a bit, don't I :huh:

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