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Ash
Ash, Solicitor
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 10916
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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My son has just signed an assured shorthold tenancy agreement

Resolved Question:

My son has just signed an assured shorthold tenancy agreement for a room in a house in London and has paid a deposit to the landlady. However, when I read the contract (after he had signed it!) she states that, for tenancies under 12 months, and his is for 6 months, she is not going to register the deposit into a tenancy deposit scheme but she will hold the deposit herself. Surely this is illegal?
Also the room has no lock on the door and the landlady is refusing to put one on. My son is very worried as he has expensive computer equipment etc and I think this is totally unreasonable to not have a lock. He has a single, not joint, tenancy. The landlady says that if a lock is put on the door, it may damage it and she will have to keep his deposit as there will be damage to her property.
If the contract contains something that is not legal, does that invalidate it?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Property Law
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
Hello my name is ***** ***** I will help you.
No this is not legal. The law requires all AST deposits to be protected. So no, it's not legal but it does not invalidate the contract.
Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?
Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you, ***** *****'t convenient to speak on the phone at the moment, but would like to continue this discussion on line? Is that OK?
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
Sure.
Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thanks, ***** ***** a copy of his contract which has myriad spelling and grammatical errors but my son's real issue with this is the absence of a lock on his door. He works for Morgan Stanley as a computer scientist and, as you can imagine, his computer is a serious piece of kit. He may also have to work at home so there are all sorts of security issues here. Is there such a thing as 'reasonable' when talking about renting a room, the rent and deposit for which are not small? Would a letter from a solicitor help the landlady be more amenable?
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
Yes it may be, but you are looking around £200 or so for a letter.
Does that clarify?
Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Ok, does the landlady have to provide a lock?
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
Not a legal requirement but ideal.
Does that help?
Alex
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