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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 71030
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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I have moved to my present flat at the end of Oct -14. A leak

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I have moved to my present flat at the end of Oct -14. A leak in the hallway (2 built in wardrobes) that I was told had stopped, It has been going on since I started living there.
My contract is a 12 months contract. I have not paid this months rent because I am fed up with the situation.
They have been trying to resolve the issue but they are very disorganized and coordinating relevant people to fix problem has not been great. I have not paid this months rent which was due on the 18th.
Now I stopped the payment of rent I get more phone calls and e-mails from this letting agency Fosters & Edwards SW2 5TN. They are telling me that the leak and paying rent are 2 different issues and Im breaching the tenancy contract but in my eyes I do not pay rent place that was not ready to move in, and the way I see it is they lied to me, saying it was fixed and they were just waiting to dry out to get ceiling replaced.
Because of the leak:
-We cannot use those wardrobes to put my clothes or my partners.
-I had to clean and lift carpet from areas leak was affecting as the smell and damp was bad.
-We have mould on wall inside wardrobes and in different places of the flat mainly in hall way doors.
-Electric fuse box is in one of these wardrobes, as leak got really bad last December; it reached fuse box and left us 2 days with no electricity in the flat. Everything in the flat is electric including shower.
They are asking me payment but I do not want to do that as I am really feed up with it. I pay 1000 pounds and I do not want to live like this.
They said they have contact the right people now including tenant above my flat and apologized this problem not being resolved yet. They say they can only try and not everything depends on them as there is a 3 party involved, plus tenant above.
What should I do, Do I have the right to finish this contract.
Thank you question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.
I am sorry but they are absolutely right. Disrepair and rent are separate issues.
You do not have the right to escape on this basis I'm afraid. A property has to be literally derelict before you can escape an AST. Similarly, you cannot withhold rent. That is breach and they could sue and they will win.
You do have a disrepair claim. In truth, it is not the best I'm afraid. Environmental health will not be interested if it only affects the wardrobe area. Similarly, you would not get a reduction in rent on this basis.
What you could do potentially is repair it yourself and then sue cost.
If the leak is much more prominent and affects use of whole rooms then that would be different. I realise the risk is that it will become worse but that is not the position at the moment.
I'm very sorry but I can only give you truthful information.
Can I clarify anything ?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

ok, thank you.

Well I guess I will pay then and wait.

Can Finish the contact based on this issue.?

thank you help!!

You do not have the right to escape on this basis I'm afraid. A property has to be literally derelict before you can escape an AST
However, if you send them a letter threatening to get the work done yourself and sue the cost then it is very unlikely that they would leave it to you. It is amazing how quickly they can get work done when they face the risk of a tenant doing it themselves at their cost.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

thank you!!!

Ill pay and do that!

No problem and all the best.
Remember that I am always available to help with your questions. Even if I am in Court I will usually pick up a question within 12 hours. information, please start your question with ‘ C’. You can also bookmark my profile
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

thank you!

You are welcome.
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