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CHF

Who Is My Contract With?

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Had some problems in a new house ive rented.

Long story short - loads of bags of rubble in back garden, rotten food, recycling bins full of soil/dog mess/food etc ( i dont tend to check bins when i view a house).

Couldnt see the rubble bags when we viewed the house as we only looked at back garden out of french doors/upstairs window and they were tight against the house.

Effectively the back garden has been unusable due to smell of rubbish, ants and flies etc.

After 4 months of pestering the LA and getting lot of promises, ive just taken the day off and hired a skip and a few gardeners and we are going to remove it all. Obviously I will be paying for this but will be invoicing the LA/Landlord.

All communication has been logged and i have told them over 8 weeks ago that i would eventually do it myself and invoice them. They promised someone would get in touch but no-one did. Also got photos of rubbish and work being carried out.

So naturaly someone is getting billed. My question is around who to bill and can i withold rent.

I know its usually not advised to breach a contract to remedy another breach Ie stop paying rent until they reimburse me.

I am going to invoice the LA and see what happens - just wanted to know where i stand

cheers

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Had some problems in a new house ive rented.

Long story short - loads of bags of rubble in back garden, rotten food, recycling bins full of soil/dog mess/food etc ( i dont tend to check bins when i view a house).

Couldnt see the rubble bags when we viewed the house as we only looked at back garden out of french doors/upstairs window and they were tight against the house.

Effectively the back garden has been unusable due to smell of rubbish, ants and flies etc.

After 4 months of pestering the LA and getting lot of promises, ive just taken the day off and hired a skip and a few gardeners and we are going to remove it all. Obviously I will be paying for this but will be invoicing the LA/Landlord.

All communication has been logged and i have told them over 8 weeks ago that i would eventually do it myself and invoice them. They promised someone would get in touch but no-one did. Also got photos of rubbish and work being carried out.

So naturaly someone is getting billed. My question is around who to bill and can i withold rent.

I know its usually not advised to breach a contract to remedy another breach Ie stop paying rent until they reimburse me.

I am going to invoice the LA and see what happens - just wanted to know where i stand

cheers

Well done for going ahead with this. I'd say invoice the agent and give them a month to pay. if they don't pay then withhold the rent by an amount required to pay for it.

This is typical of EA's IMO. No action until you withhold the rent then you suddenly get their attention. I think this would go in your favour in court especially if you kept details of all your communications.

They might kick you out after the first year though or attempt to increase the rent excessively. Don't think there's much you can do about that except find a new place.

Good luck.

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When I have had to pay money to remedy a breach I have used the small claims court system to get my money back direct from the LL. The legal advice that I got at that stage was not to withhold rent as the LL would just try to evict me and that my contract was with them. I was advised to send registered letters to the LL I paid out any money and to advise them what action I would take and the timeframe.

I'm not sure how you are going to get on with the LA. There is the argument that they are acting as the agent for the LL and should have passed this on to him/her. Do you have the LL's name and address?

In the past I'd had problems with LL's who hide behind offshore companies and when a LA refused to give me the name and address for the LL I sent all the correspondence to the LA and made it clear that they were responsible for passing it on.

Hopefully others will have a better idea where you stand.

Edited by Flopsy

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Well done for going ahead with this. I'd say invoice the agent and give them a month to pay. if they don't pay then withhold the rent by an amount required to pay for it.

This is typical of EA's IMO. No action until you withhold the rent then you suddenly get their attention. I think this would go in your favour in court especially if you kept details of all your communications.

They might kick you out after the first year though or attempt to increase the rent excessively. Don't think there's much you can do about that except find a new place.

Good luck.

My worry is that I am suing the wrong party. Get that wrong and the claim will be bounced out of court.

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My worry is that I am suing the wrong party. Get that wrong and the claim will be bounced out of court.

Your contract is with the landlord, the letting agent is the landlord's agent. You should issue the summons against the landlord. Google Agency Law disclosed principal.

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Your contract is with the landlord, the letting agent is the landlord's agent. You should issue the summons against the landlord. Google Agency Law disclosed principal.

V interesting thanks.

And if his defence he was completely unaware of the issue, what then?

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V interesting thanks.

And if his defence he was completely unaware of the issue, what then?

That is a matter he will have to take up with his agent. It is incumbent on the agent to comply with his obligations to the principal one of which will be a duty to discharge his duties with care and due diligence.

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That is a matter he will have to take up with his agent. It is incumbent on the agent to comply with his obligations to the principal one of which will be a duty to discharge his duties with care and due diligence.

Yep that sounds completely plausible to me. Seems a shame to piss off the landlord as my gripe was with the LA

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It only costs a couple of quid to get the address of the property title owner from the Land Registry. It could be a company, in which case you may need to check Duedil to get the director's address. Chances are this will be the landlord, unless they've got some convoluted jiggery-pokery going on.

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UPDATE:

Submitted an invoice for the work along with detailed particulars at end of June. Went on holiday for a few weeks. On return the email hadnt even been acknowledged. Chased again for an acknowledgement and they said they would respond in due course. I advised them they had already taken 3 weeks to even acknowledge and that i was only prepared to give them another 48 hours.

48 hours passed last night so jut submitted my county court claim.

Think it will get interesting now................

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UPDATE 2

A bit late, but im having a lazy Saturday so indulge me.

After submitting the Claim to MCOL, I sat back and waited the 2 weeks for a response. I was sure there would be a flurry of activity but literally nothing happened.

So on the morning of the 15th day, I completed the last 2 pages of MCOL process to the final page where pressing 'Submit' would have given the landlord a CCJ.

Id prev researched the LL and discovered he was a local businessman and had a number of Ltd cos. Knowing the damage a CCJ can do (though easily removed if satisfied), I thought id give the LL one final chance as the compete lack of response did make me question whether he was aware of the Claim Form.

I managed to track him down to an office and gave him a call. He denied any knowledge and was keen to meet with me – very worried about getting a CCJ. He seemed plausible enough and told me he had heard nothing from the LA and was furious. However, the LA was telling him not to meet me and defend the claim. I had to spell out to LL that for his LA to be able to defend something, I had to go home and submit the CCJ and is this what he really wanted?

Anyway, he seemed like a decent enough bloke so I agreed to drop the £900 claim down to the actual out of pocket expense of £200 and he agreed to do some design work for me (to the tune of about £500 worth.

It was only when I got home I realised that I was still £60 down due to the court filing costs! Hey ho, at least I got 2 cups of coffee out of it and hopefully a longer term relationship with LL as all along we’ve been really fond of the house…

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UPDATE 2

A bit late, but im having a lazy Saturday so indulge me.

After submitting the Claim to MCOL, I sat back and waited the 2 weeks for a response. I was sure there would be a flurry of activity but literally nothing happened.

So on the morning of the 15th day, I completed the last 2 pages of MCOL process to the final page where pressing 'Submit' would have given the landlord a CCJ.

Id prev researched the LL and discovered he was a local businessman and had a number of Ltd cos. Knowing the damage a CCJ can do (though easily removed if satisfied), I thought id give the LL one final chance as the compete lack of response did make me question whether he was aware of the Claim Form.

I managed to track him down to an office and gave him a call. He denied any knowledge and was keen to meet with me – very worried about getting a CCJ. He seemed plausible enough and told me he had heard nothing from the LA and was furious. However, the LA was telling him not to meet me and defend the claim. I had to spell out to LL that for his LA to be able to defend something, I had to go home and submit the CCJ and is this what he really wanted?

Anyway, he seemed like a decent enough bloke so I agreed to drop the £900 claim down to the actual out of pocket expense of £200 and he agreed to do some design work for me (to the tune of about £500 worth.

It was only when I got home I realised that I was still £60 down due to the court filing costs! Hey ho, at least I got 2 cups of coffee out of it and hopefully a longer term relationship with LL as all along we’ve been really fond of the house…

Probably the best resolution all round, a good working relationship with a good landlord is the most valuable asset you can have in a tenancy.

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Now you have a relationship - get him to drop the Agent and both of you deal directly with each other.

He did suggest this. He said he had 16 properties in total but most of them were near where he and his mrs lived so he managed them himself. He had a few more (where I am) that he contracted out to the LA (thnk he said 18% for full management - which obviously doesn't include forwarding court papers!). the LA was apparently a mate of his.

He also pleaded poverty which is why I'd didn't push to far, even though he arrived in a Q7. I think I may have been hoodwinked or he is all asset rich and cash poor.

Funniest thing about the whole meeting was his phone was ringing incessantly. He was good enough to ignore every call but did allude to the fact he was ran off his feet. I made the joke that I though he had escaped the rat race. It took him a few seconds to realise I was referencing an Internet book he had written a while ago and then his face sank ha ha!

Edit: please don't hunt him down. And if you do, don't post his name please. He was a decent bloke. :ph34r:

Edited by CHF

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I've just put his book on a pile for a friend.

The evidence suggested his 'secrets' aren't that successful. Unless it just says, buy loads of houses 10 year ago.

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Many wish they were that poor.

Either Im a gullible fool (likely) or he really was short of actual cash. I reckon the Q7 was probably on finance. Say you make £300 profit clear on each house, thats only £5k a month. If its between him and his Mrs, its not a big dual income and takes no account of voids/maintenance etc.

I reckon hes sat on paper tho of half a mil equity.

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Either Im a gullible fool (likely) or he really was short of actual cash. I reckon the Q7 was probably on finance. Say you make £300 profit clear on each house, thats only £5k a month. If its between him and his Mrs, its not a big dual income and takes no account of voids/maintenance etc.

I reckon hes sat on paper tho of half a mil equity.

Well if he's spending it all , I hope you don't have any problems requiring maintenance in the house.

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  • 246 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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