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Ash
Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10916
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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I am being evicted because I have complained about the damp

Resolved Question:

I am being evicted because I have complained about the damp in my rental property.

My contract runs until 24 April, but my Landlord is insisting on starting remedial works before I vacate, which I feel is unreasonable.

Please can you advise me if I can prevent this happening.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ash replied 3 years ago.

Alex Watts :

Hello my name is XXXXX XXXXX I will help you with this. Please note that I am a working Solicitor and may be on and offline as I have to attend Court and meet with clients, even at weekends. As such you may not get an instant response when you reply as this is not an ‘on demand’ live service, but rest assured I will be giving your question my immediate attention upon return. There is no need to wait here, you will get an email when I reply.

Alex Watts :

What does your contract say about works being done please?

Customer:

I don't understand this question.

Alex Watts :

Is there anything in your contract that says the Landlord can carry out work>

Customer:

My contract gives the landlord permission to enter the property to effect repairs provided I am given 24 hours' notice, but I feel it is unreasonable to start works now, given that I am being evicted because I was told the works would be too drastic for me to live with, and hence I was told I had to vacate.

Alex Watts :

What is going to be done please?

Customer:

I am told they want to do a gas safety inspection. This is now 18 months overdue. They also want to start redecoration works on the mould in bedroom 2, but the Environmental Health Officer said that this can release harmful spores into the air, and that it would be better if I were not living here whilst this work is carried out. I have had a nasty chest infection of late, and visited the doctor last week.

Alex Watts :

And what is it you want to do?

Customer:

They also said at the time the work was inspected in December that the kitchen would need to be removed so that chemical injections and re-plastering could be carried out.

Customer:

I want to have 'quiet enjoyment' of the property until I leave next month.

Alex Watts :

OK - what is it you want to achieve?

Alex Watts :

Ok - has he given you notice to move yet?

Customer:

Yes. A section 21 Notice to be out by 24 April, to which I had already agreed anyway.

Alex Watts :

Ok - but he wants you to go early?

Customer:

Well, it seems he wants to make it so uncomfortable that I have no choice to go early...though he has not said so.

Customer:

Not sure if my last reply got lost...?
He hasn't said he wanted me to go early, but it seems he's trying to make it so uncomfortable that I 'elect' to do so...

Alex Watts :

You can stay. You should write to the agent or Landlord and say you want peaceful enjoyment otherwise he is going to be in breach of contract.

Alex Watts :

You have a right to remain until the end of your term and the Landlord has to respect that.

Alex Watts :

He is entitled to do a gas inspection but you can refuse access to works.

Alex Watts :

But you dont have to let the Landlord do these major works.

Alex Watts :

You should allow the gas inspection - but that is it.

Alex Watts :

If he tries to do anything else you can sue for breach of contract and claim loss and damage

Alex Watts :

Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?

Customer:

Why should I allow the gas inspection...?
At present, he is potentially looking at a fine of up to £20,000 and a custodial sentence according to the Environmental Health Officer. Surely, if I allow him to do that, then I have no leverage here at all...

Alex Watts :

If you refuse he can seek an injunction to make you and you would be liable for those costs. A gas inspection is for your own safety. If you refuse access it makes you look. bad. He wouldnt be sent to prison if the Court knows YOU refused access

Alex Watts :

Can I clarify anything else for you today?

Customer:

Thank you. Just one more point - I do understand what you're saying about the gas safety certificate, but once it has one, would that obviate the fact that there hasn't been one for the past 18 months...?
It just seems to me this is my only bargaining chip at this point in time...!

Alex Watts :

Its not your only chip - the fact it has been 18 months remains - he can't get away from that

Customer:

Great. Thanks Alex.

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