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Ash
Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10916
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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Madam, I moved into a new property yesterday but

Customer Question

Dear Sir/Madam,
I moved into a new property yesterday but have not signed the tenancy agreement yet.
The landlord who lives in the property informed me to my surprise that the shower had running water for no longer than 10 minutes after which it would stop for 20 minutes. Moreover, I noticed that the heat did not work at night. I informed the landlord and she told me that it only runs from 6.30 till 8.30 and from 6.30 till 21.30. I was shocked as this was not communicated to me during the viewing. After reading the tenancy agreement I found some points which were troubling. I asked the landlord to speak about those as well as about the heating issue but she has been avoiding my calls. I have already paid the first rental and a month of deposit. As I have not signed the tenancy agreement yet is it possible for me to walk out of the contract and leave the place with my money reimbursed given that she is not providing the property in an acceptable condition. The length of the tenancy agreement is 4 months.
Thank you very much for your prompt reply.
Best regards
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
Hello my name is ***** ***** I will help you.
What type of agreement do you have please? Note it may be morning when I reply.
Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10916
Experience: Solicitor with 5+ years experience
Ash and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
It is a shorthold tenancy agreement with a private live-in landlord
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
Ok. Do you want to give me your number and I can call tomorrow morning?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Would it be possible to have this call now or do you need more time to examine the case?
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
I am just in the USA and about to board a plane back to London which leaves in about ten minutes.
So if i call now I may have to stop mid way.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I see. Will it be the same price if we have part of this conversation today and part of it tomorrow morning?
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
Yes, but I am in board and they are just finishing loading, so it may not be long at all if I call tonight. I can think about it overnight too
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Ok In that case let's speak for 5 mins now and we'll speak more tomorrow morning. Thank you for your understanding
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
They have asked for items off as they have loaded everyone. I can call tomorrow am. What time would be good?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Could we try at 9.30am please?
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
Ok.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Could we please postpone the call to 10.30am as I will not be able to make it before due to work?
Thanks.
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
Ok
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hello Alex, Will you be calling soon?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Please find attached the lodging agreement
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
The number doesn't connect?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Could you please try again +447470240021? Please let me know if it does not work and I will give you my work number. Thanks.
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
No, not working.
Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
My work phone number is: +44 (0)(###) ###-####
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Have you tried to call?
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
Calling now.
Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Dear Alex,
I spoke to the landlord yesterday and informed her that I did not intend to sign a contract that would bind me to live for 4 month in the property. She said that she would not pay back the first month rental and that I was free to move out when I wanted, to which I said that I would move out at the end of the 1-month period. She said that she didn't even have to pay for the deposit but would after deductions. I reiterated the fact that I wanted to find an amicable compromise for all parties.
This morning she asked me for my copy of the tenancy agreement. Later today she sent me an email saying that she had spoken to an agent and claims that I am bound by the pre-agreement (please see attached) because I moved in so that I am legally bound to 4 months. Could you please advise me on this matter? Also please find below her email:
Dear *****,Thank you very much for your call last night. I’m sorry you are unhappy with the room and that we cannot accommodate all your requests.
We left the heating on for you last night and this morning, therefore hope you found the temperature in the room more comfortable.I have spoken to a property agent for advice on the matter of you wishing to end the agreement early. If you still wish to do this you need to provide me with specific details in writing as soon as possible.As you’ve already moved in with the agreement of a 4 month contract and signed the pre-agreement, agreeing the term, this is what currently stands. The pre-agreement was not binding until you officially moved in. As you’ve refused to sign the Lodging agreement, the pre-agreement will now stand. You (the lodger) cannot just suddenly draw up an agreement of your own changing it to 1 month, as you’ve already moved in with the agreement of a 4 month term. (I as the Landlord would not be allowed to change the term either). As you’re aware, for a 1 month term the price would have been higher per month (approx. £1550)
The landlord has the right to demand the total 4 months rent (this would be the case had you gone through an agent). Obviously I won’t do this, but please provide your written notice ASAP and I will get back to you within a week with my comments. I’m sure we can reach a fair and amicable compromise.Louise & Mo
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
You have applied for lodgings - that is not a contract.
Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you Alex. As you can see in her email, she is asking me for a specific details in writing. What should I put in writing and what should I not? Can she ask for a higher price since i am only staying for a month as she mentions in her email?
Do you confirm that she has no legal basis to claim the 4 month rent? Does the fact that I moved in change anything? My aim is to stay for a month and leave then. What specific details should I have in writing/is it a new contract?
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
No legal basis as its not a contract.
Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Can she ask for a higher price since i am only staying for a month as she mentions in her email?
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
No she can't. Only the time you have actually spent.
Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Would you be able to assist me in writing the details she is asking? If yes, for what price?
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
Sadly its beyond the remit of the site to do that for you.
Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I see. Would you then be able to indicate what type of document I should write? Is it a notice to quit, a new contract, just a letter summing up the conversations? What should I be particularly aware of and not write?
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
Just write and set out your position. Saying no contract was signed, merely an application and that you want to terminate and are not liable in the absence of any contract you are not liable for any notice periods.
Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?
Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Could I provide you with a draft tonight so that you could give me your comments?
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
Yes of course.
Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi Alex,
Please find below my draft of the letter. Could you please give me your legal opinion? Furthermore would you make any changes? Does it sound too firm or too apologetic? Are there things i should remove or include?
ThanksDear Louise,
First, I would like to thank you and your fiancé very much for taking the time to speak with me last evening. I am sorry that our agreement is not working as I am uncomfortable living in the property and that you have expressed the fact that you are unhappy with me as a tenant due to my working hours and my demands for heating, where we seem to have a difference of perspective. I also did not anticipate that the fact that you have a powerful pump would be an issue given that it is loud and disturbs either you when I am taking showers at night or me when it is turned off. I also feel uncomfortable because I have the feeling to be disturbing you due of my long working hours and it personally puts me in an uncomfortable position to live in a place where I am a disturbance.
As no contract was signed by either of us but merely an application for lodging, which is not liable for any of the parties and for which none of the parties are liable for any notice period, I think, as discussed yesterday, that it would make more sense for both parties to terminate the agreement at this point and part in friendly terms.
As I have already paid for a month of rent in advance as well as a deposit, I could move at the end of the one-month period i.e. on 21 December 2015, after which I am expecting to receive back my deposit (less of course any charges due to damages, if there should be any). If it would be more suitable for you, I am also prepared to move out any day before that, provided that you reimburse me my first month rental less the pro-rata amount for the time spent in the property. I am also expecting to see the inventory check report, which was established prior to my moving-in date and would ask to be present at the checkout inventory check.
Again, I would like to reiterate, as mentioned by your fiancé yesterday evening, that it is my aim (as I understand it is yours) to reach an amicable agreement and stay in friendly terms without any ill feelings for the remaining time of my stay and possibly thereafter.
I regret that it did not work and hope that we can find an amicable agreement, which makes sense for both of us. Thank you for your understanding.
Best regards,Gregory
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
Yes that seems fine - you put it in a very good way!
Alex

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