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Ash
Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10916
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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Stayed in holiday rental property (through an agent) and

Resolved Question:

Stayed in holiday rental property (through an agent) and broke a decorative bowl.
Owner has a letter from original artist to confirm it will be £500 to make a replacement.
Our argument is it was in a high traffic area (on only table we could eat at and therefore had to be removed every mealtime) and there were no notices anywhere to suggest it's high value. If there have been, we would have removed it to a safer place.
We think £50 is a reasonable offer to replace it. Owner wants full £500 to cover cost which is also her access on her contents insurance.
We are happy to increase our offer but think £500 is an unreasonable amount. Owner is running a business, her choice to put high value item in high traffic area at risk of damage and should therefore claim from her insurance.
Terms and conditions of agent say we are liable and contract is with owner who now wants to take us to small claims court.
Where do we stand legally when we were not aware of high value in such a high traffic area? Surely our offer is reasonable or what would an reasonable offer be?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.

Hello my name is ***** ***** I will help you with this.

Have you seen it would cost £500 to replace?
Have you asked how much it was when it was originally purchased?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Owner cannot provide original receipt at the moment. However, original artist has sent a hand written letter confirming bowl was purchased in 2014 for £500 and would cost £500 to make a replacement. Artist does have a website and seems genuine.
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.

Thanks. Legally you are responsible for the cost.

You agreed to the terms and conditions say you are liable for damage and indeed in the law of negligence you are liable.

If your argument is that you did not know, then in reality you would be expecting everything to be labelled to say what the value is.

Indeed I dont think you could argue you would have taken more care had you knew of the value.

Its the same if you hire a car, regardless of whether its worth £500 or £50,000 you would be expected to take the same care.

Sadly I think you would be liable for any cost for replacement so in this case it is going to come down to negotiation

I am sorry if this is not the answer you want and certainly not the one I want to give you, but I have a duty to be honest.

Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thanks. No, not the answer I wanted but I needed an honest one to know how to progress. So if she took it to No Claims Court I would be liable for full cost? I may try my luck and offer £250 but long term if I had to offer £450 to take into consideration this legal advise cost, do you think that is reasonable?
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.

Potentially yes. A judge may say well its the full value but also well you shouldnt have put something so expensive there.

I would try £250, at worst they can say no

Does that clarify?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
many thanks for your help.
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.

If this answers your question could I invite you to rate my answer before you go today, otherwise the site doesn’t pay me for the time spent with you. Thanks in advance and good luck.

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