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Ash
Ash, Solicitor
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 10915
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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I rent, through an agency, an unfurnished property in

Customer Question

Hi,
I rent, through an agency, an unfurnished property in England. It is a nice bungalow in a small village. It looked lovely and in good repair when I signed the tenancy and moved in last September. I was the first tenant since the previous occupier was the landlord's mother who had died. I wanted a quiet place to work on a postgraduate qualification (I'm a very mature student!) and this seemed ideal.
Since moving in there have been a long list of problems requiring workmen to repair. most of these seem to me to be due to inadequate previous maintenance. The most serious was a burst pipe under the concrete floor in early March, (landlord admitted this had happened before). This required digging up the floor and extensive machine drying which made living here intolerable. Noise levels were at a level that I would have been issued ear defenders were it a workplace! Repairs are still ongoing. I will not bore you with the details of the numerous tradesmen that have come and gone in the last few months with more to come.
The central heating system - the source of the leak - does not work properly and can not heat the house and, due to the extensive nature of the remediation work, the landlord has proposed fixing it after I move out.
I have asked the landlord to agree to a rent reduction as a consequence and he has said he is willing to discuss this, but only when the repairs are completed because he does not want to enter into an open ended discussion. I was not happy, but didn't see an alternative. However this gives the landlord no incentive for getting the work completed. Completion is now unlikely before my tenancy ends.
This situation has made me ill and I am now on medication. It also has severely impacted my studies.
I am at my wits end. Where do I stand?
Submitted: 4 months ago.
Category: Property Law
Expert:  Ash replied 4 months ago.

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

What is it you want to achieve please?
Alex

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
I would like to know whether I can claim any money back and, if so, how to go about it.
Customer: replied 4 months ago.
I can provide further details of the problems and conversations with the agency. It is lengthy.
Expert:  Ash replied 4 months ago.

You need to write and set out your losses and request a refund within 14 days or say you will go to Court within 14 days. You should make sure you send this signed delivery and keep a copy.
If they do not refund you then you can issue proceedings in the County Court. You can either do this online at: www.moneyclaim.gov.uk or by completing form N1 http://s3-eu-west-1.amazonaws.com/hmctsformfinder/n1-eng.pdf and take it to your local County Court.
The Court will then issue a claim which a copy will be sent to the Defendant who will have a limited time to defend it, if not you can enter Judgment and enforce.
If the claim is for £10,000 or less it will be a small claim so you will not need legal representation. Over this value you would need representation for trial.
Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
How do I know whether it is reasonable for me to request the rent reduction? Or indeed, whether I should ask for more? I do not want to say I'll go to court unless I have grounds for thinking it will succeed.
Customer: replied 4 months ago.
I also need to know the legal grounds for my claim, do I not?
Expert:  Ash replied 4 months ago.

Yes this is dilapidation to property, breach of contract. I think you have a claim.

Does that clairfy? Alex

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Does this dilapidation to property apply to privately rented property? All the information I can find relates to commercial leases?
Customer: replied 4 months ago.
I am sorry. I find this method of getting help unsatisfactory. I do not wish to continue.
Expert:  Ash replied 4 months ago.

Ok, I can call you if you prefer? Alex

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