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Thomas
Thomas, Solicitor
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 7647
Experience:  UK solicitor holding an England and Wales practising Certificate.
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We are renting a property and wish to moved to a better

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Hello we are renting a property and wish to moved to a better property . that landlord from the old property as not for filled her part of the agreement by not doing all the repairs on the property. we are in a contract . can we end the contract and move.regards adr***** *****house

Hi Adrian,

Thanks for your question.

What repairs has your current landlord not done?

When does the fixed term of your current tenancy expire?

Is there any break clause in the tenancy allowing you to terminate the current tenancy?

Kind regards.

Tom

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
We have a over a year left on contract. Black mould and damp in areas of the house and a outhouse that was built and is falling down and leaking in

Okay, when did you tell the landlord about these disrepairs and have they said they will correct them?

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
At the start of the tenancy. Over a year ago

Did they say they would correct the damp?

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
but have not

Hi

Thanks for your question. I will try to help.

I'm afraid you will be bound by the full term of the tenancy agreement unless there is a break clause in it entitling you terminate at a certain point during the term or the property is unfit for human habitation (which would also entitle you to terminate as it would be what is called a repudiatory breach of contract).

If the damp is sufficiently severe so that no normal and reasonable person could or should live in the property then it would be a repudiatory breach of contract. If the damp is not sufficiently severe then it would not entitle you to terminate the contract.

You should be aware that it is unlikely whatever you do the landlord is likely to dispute it, so it may ultimately end up with litigation.

You should formally write to the landlord specifying the disrepair that you notified them of previously and noting when you told them about it (and that they have not corrected it despite saying they will do so, , making a list of the reasonable repair required and ask that he make those repairs within a reasonable time (eg. 14 days). State that if the landlord does not make the repair within that time you will consider it a repudiatory breach of contract which entitles you to terminate.

If he repairs it then you will have to see out your contract. If he does not then I would strongly suggest contacting the environmental health department of the local authority and getting them to make an inspection. If they declare that the damp is severe then they may serve a notice on the landlord requiring repair. You should also get them to state in writing (if you can) that they consider it unfit for human habitation. If they do this then you may consider seeing a local solicitor and getting them to write to the landlord stating that you consider it a repudiatory breach entitling you to terminate and then thereafter vacating.

If environmental health do not declare the damp to be severe then your best bet is to get the landlord to do the repairs, but if he does not then to pay for the repairs yourself and then seek to recover the cost from him by suing him with evidence of the original damp, your efforts to get him to repair and evidence of what repairs have cost.

My goal is to provide you with a good service. If you feel you have received anything less, please reply back. Please remember to leave positive feedback using the stars at the top of the page.

Kind regards,

Tom

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