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Please can you confirm the length of your tenancy agreement?
Thanks for the information.
Given you did not cause the damage i suggest you challenge the landlord's request because it is part of her obligation legally and probably contractually to repair these sort of damage in the property.
The law in question which supports my comment is the Defective Premises Act which states landlords must meet the costs of these sort of matters not caused by the tenant.
Do you understand what i have stated if yes i will proceed to the next step?
I suggest you contact the landlady and remind her of her contractual and legal obligations to repair and maintain the property. Further I suggest you state also that if she does not repair it you will file a complaint with the local council and the housing ombudsman.
I hope I have clarified the position if not please let me know.
The argument she seeks to rely on appears weak because the bottom line is the leak was not caused by your actions
Do you understand what i have stated, if not please not let me know.
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Contractually you are not entitled to leave given you signed a tenancy agreement to stay in the property until the end date. However you have good grounds for vacating the property early given the health risks caused by the leak which appears should have been repaired by the Landlord.
Another point in your favor is if she did not protect the deposit using an independent scheme, she has broken the law and you can sue her for up to 3 times the deposit figure.
Please see the link below which gives a brief outline regarding the consequences where landlords fails to play by the rules.
You don't need to a solicitor at this stage.
You don't need a solicitor at this stage