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Ash
Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10916
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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I'm currently living in a rented houseshare with 3 other people

Resolved Question:

I’m currently living in a rented houseshare with 3 other people in the property.
Last week (05/06/15) one of the fridges in the property broke. This was an additional fridge provided by the tenants as we found sharing the small fridge provided was insufficient. I emailed the letting agents to inform them that, although the fridge which had broken was not the one initially in the property, the fridge which was supplied has insufficient space for all tenants (it only has 3 shelves to share between 4 people). I asked that either an additional fridge or a larger one would need to be supplied. The letting agents confirmed this email had been received on the same date and said they would contact the landlord, however a follow up email I sent on 12/06/15 enquiring for any further updates has not, as of yet, been acknowledged.
Earlier this evening one of the dials on the gas oven became jammed whilst it was on which meant we were not able to turn the oven off. A message was sent to our direct contact at the letting agents as well the owner and one other employee asking for someone to attend the property asap as we were concerned. Although we have stopped the gas supply in the house, no one at the agency responded to this message. As we’ve had to cut the gas supply we’ll also be without hot water and heating until the problem is fixed.
Is there any time limit in which the repairs or replacements of these appliances must be done by? And also any conditions regarding the quality of the replacements? The agency is likely to take any shortcuts possible and have provided very poor replacements previously (normally items taken from another house due to being faulty). I’m just looking for something as a back-up, as it’s difficult to argue the case when you’re not clear on the rights and responsiblities of all involved.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ash replied 2 years ago.
Hello my name is ***** ***** I will help you with this.
Does your agreement say how quick things must be fixed by please?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Having read through the agreement, it only states which appliances must be replaced by the landlord, there isn't a time period specified.

Expert:  Ash replied 2 years ago.
Ok. With hot water / heating, its an obligation the Landlord repair this quickly because it is a breach of the Landlord and Tenant Act if they don't. So although there is no specific term on timeframe, it should be sooner rather than later.
As for the Fridge, then again because the above applies, the Landlord is in breach of contract if they dont replace it. I would consider 14 days to be reasonable to allow review of different ones, ordering and then delivery. Its hard to order and get delivered the same day.
As for the replacement its up to the Landlord. There is no obligation on quality unless its in the agreement. Clearly a Landlord is better with a higher quality one as it means it will last longer. But on the other hand the Landlord may not want an expensive one if its rented to tenants rather than his own.
Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?
Alex
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Would it be reasonable to request a discount on the rent if the issues are not resolved within the next 7 days? As it stands we currently have no alternative way to cook or heat food so this will mean further expense.

Regarding the quality of the replacements, the oven which is currently broken was a replacement before I moved into the property. The dial which has now jammed has always worked back-to-front to the actual oven setting, i.e when the dial indicates the highest heat setting, the oven will switch off and vice versa. So although technically the oven has worked up until now, there has always been this fault present. The reason I enquired after the quality of a replacement was to try and prevent getting another appliance with these faults and simply being told that it is functional.

Expert:  Ash replied 2 years ago.
Yes it would, but in reality the discount would not more than say 25% as to be fair you have the use of the property. Indeed, the replacement is the choice of the Landlord. But the items should be in working order.
Does that help?
Alex
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