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Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10916
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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I part-own one bedroom flat with Southern Housing Group. I

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I part-own one bedroom flat with Southern Housing Group. I own 30% under a shared ownership scheme. My flat is on the top floor. The attic above my flat belongs to Southern Housing. The only access into the attic is through the hatch in the ceiling in my bedroom. From the beginning of my tenancy ten years ago due to the way the building was build we get rats in the attic. This has been ongoing problem and SH would sent pest control, which always has been a temporary solution. We have asked repeatedly for permanent solution but after many requests SH's subcontractor Bryars sent a worker who hasn't been briefed on the job and couldn't solve the problem. Organising the visit of this worker has been a stressful episode in itself due to rather chaotic system of booking at the Bryars end. Reactions from SH are uncoordinated and take long time. Over the years this situation has been a blight on our home life and has caused me and my partner distress and upset, significantly lowering enjoyment of our home. What would be your advice if I wanted to take matters further and make SH respond in an organises and effective way? I am fulfilling my side of the contract, having never defaulted on the rent and service charges. In my opinion SH are in breach of contract by the manner with which fail to deal with the problem. Thank you. Ms Valesova.

Alex Watts :
Alex Watts : Hello my name is XXXXX XXXXX I will help you with this. Please note that I am a working Solicitor and may be on and offline as I have to attend Court and meet with clients, even at weekends. As such you may not get an instant response when you reply, but rest assured I will be giving your question my immediate attention upon return You do not need to wait here as you will get an email when I reply.
Alex Watts : Have you had someone like Rentokill out to see what the solution would be please?

Thank you Alex. We had first a company who are subcontracted by Southern Housing. They are called Shield Pest Control UK Ltd, and contracted by Bryers, who take care of SH repairs. I have documentation left by the worker. He checked the renewable baits left by the previous worker.


He has also written in his report suggestion that a panel is put over the electric conduct in the loft. That is where the rats come from. After 3 month another worker from Bryers attended, but was told of this job last minute on the day and wasn't given any brief. He put some paneling in but stated himself that it won't be a deterrent and rats will still be able to enter. Southern Housing said they created a work flow and estate supervisor will take up the task. That was last week. I haven't heard anything since, only presence of the rat. I will be very happy to reply to all your questions. Thank you.

Alex Watts :

What you need to do is get a number of quotes for getting the work done to solve the problem, this is then your loss

Alex Watts :


You need to write and set out your losses and request they do the work or do the work within 14 days or say you will go to Court within 14 days. You should make sure you send this recorded delivery and keep a copy.


If they refuse then you can issue proceedings in the County Court. You can either do this online at: or by completing form N1 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 matter is defended it will be set down for a trial. If the claim is for £10,000 or less it will be a small claim and you will not need representation.


Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?


Thank you Alex!


Thank you Alex! the method is now clear to me and I know how to proceed. I appreciate your advice. Lada Valesova.

Alex Watts :

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Please remember that I am always happy to help if you have future questions, even if I am in Court I can normally respond within a few hours. For future information, please start them with ‘For Alex W’.


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