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shatner's bassoon

Nightmare Landlord

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Hi all, I'm looking for some advice on our tool of a landlord, if possible. My girlfriend and I took out a rental agreement on our apartment 3 years ago with a pretty large local property development company.

Recently (given the length of time that we have been living in the property) we asked the developer if we could have the apartment redecorated and some issues fixed - bath resealed, cupboards fixed, that kind of thing. In our contract the landlord is stated as being the property developer, however it now transpires that there is a snidey, amateur BTL lurking in the background (news to us). The developer had some difficulty locating him but he reluctantly came round and had a look at the apartment. He said that he would be prepared to do the bare minimum (one room painted, bath resealed, cupboards glued back on (!).

However, this was some months ago and he is still dragging his feet. It is very evident that he has absolutely no interest in spending any money on the property. He even hinted to the developer that he was thinking of selling the property and that we could have first refusal (not likely, and current market value for these flats are about £50,000 less than what he paid in 2007 so suspect that this is a bluff).

The development company have been pretty sympathetic to date, however there seems to a limit to what they can do. Our contract says that the landlord is responsible for having insurance on all inventoried items and to repair any damage as quickly as possible. I'm thinking of either withholding rent, asking for a reduction in the monthly amount, or getting the work done privately and taking the amount out of our rent. Not sure what the best course of action to take is, or where we stand legally (particularly as we have no direct contract with the BTL muppet and our contract is with the developer). It's fairly bizarre to be honest as the apartment is visibly deteriorating by the month, and it's really not in his interest to stand idly by. I know that the real answer is probably to move out, but it's a hassle that we could do without to be honest.

Any advice would be hugely appreciated.

Edited by shatner's bassoon

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Hi all, I'm looking for some advice on our tool of a landlord, if possible. My girlfriend and I took out a rental agreement on our apartment 3 years ago with a pretty large local property development company.

Recently (given the length of time that we have been living in the property) we asked the developer if we could have the apartment redecorated and some issues fixed - bath resealed, cupboards fixed, that kind of thing. In our contract the landlord is stated as being the property developer, however it now transpires that there is a snidey, amateur BTL lurking in the background (news to us). The developer had some difficulty locating him but he reluctantly came round and had a look at the apartment. He said that he would be prepared to do the bare minimum (one room painted, bath resealed, cupboards glued back on (!).

However, this was some months ago and he is still dragging his feet. It is very evident that he has absolutely no interest in spending any money on the property. He even hinted to the developer that he was thinking of selling the property and that we could have first refusal (not likely, and current market value for these flats are about £50,000 less than what he paid in 2007 so suspect that this is a bluff).

The development company have been pretty sympathetic to date, however there seems to a limit to what they can do. Our contract says that the landlord is responsible for having insurance on all inventoried items and to repair any damage as quickly as possible. I'm thinking of either withholding rent, asking for a reduction in the monthly amount, or getting the work done privately and taking the amount out of our rent. Not sure what the best course of action to take is, or where we stand legally (particularly as we have no direct contract with the BTL muppet and our contract is with the developer). It's fairly bizarre to be honest as the apartment is visibly deteriorating by the month, and it's really not in his interest to stand idly by. I know that the real answer is probably to move out, but it's a hassle that we could do without to be honest.

Any advice would be hugely appreciated.

If the contract is with the developer, any subcontracted relationship with a landlord (who presumably does not own any piece of paper with your signature on it) is little more than a sublet arrangement and therefore has no legal legitimacy. Chase the developer for all repairs - they have legal responsibility to make the property habitable and no-one else (despite what their internal paperwork says about a mystery third party with whom you've never made a contract).

Or to put it another way, write (and you need to put it in writing) to the developer and explain that if the repairs are not done, you will start withholding rent. They can then be responsible for pressuring the 'landlord' and if they don't, both the landlord and developer will start losing even more money.

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If the contract is with the developer, any subcontracted relationship with a landlord (who presumably does not own any piece of paper with your signature on it) is little more than a sublet arrangement and therefore has no legal legitimacy. Chase the developer for all repairs - they have legal responsibility to make the property habitable and no-one else (despite what their internal paperwork says about a mystery third party with whom you've never made a contract).

Or to put it another way, write (and you need to put it in writing) to the developer and explain that if the repairs are not done, you will start withholding rent. They can then be responsible for pressuring the 'landlord' and if they don't, both the landlord and developer will start losing even more money.

Cheers Sydney, took your advice and threatened to start witholding rent. Minutes later I got an email to say the 'landlord' had instructed the developer to proceed with all repairs.

What a scum bag.

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  • 312 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



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