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Vineet S
Vineet S,
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 1678
Experience:  Freelance Solicitor at Self Employed
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I have a question for a lawyer about a dispute between a

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I have a question for a lawyer about a dispute between a letting agency and landlord
JA: What steps have you taken so far? Have you prepared or filed any paperwork?
Customer: No
JA: Where is the property located?
Customer: Barking, Greater London
JA: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: The letting agency has used the property for illegal purposes - a cannabis factory. The police are aware and when we found out they refused to hand the property back to us. Now they have put in a “new tenant” (the tenant is fake) and are forcing us to pay them 15% even though there is no tenancy agreement we’ve signed.

Welcome to Just Answer, I am a practicing solicitor in England and Wales and I will be dealing with your case today.

Kindly note, I am not available for phone calls at the moment, however I can easily assist you via this online chat.

Customer: replied 18 days ago.
Hi, that’s fine with me thank you

Hi there,

sorry to hear about that.

When they used your property for illegal purposes, that was fundamental breach of your agreement with the letting agent.

They have breached their agreement as they have failed to take due care and behaved in unprofessional manner.

Customer: replied 18 days ago.
I see, I am unsure of what to do next as now they have put a new “tenant” in there

You should report them to your local council.

you can also make a complaint to the professional regulatory body your agents are member of.

They should be reported to the office of fair trading and their license can be cancelled.

Customer: replied 18 days ago.
They are forcing us to pay them 15% per month - what can be done about this? As the 15% is part of a guaranteed rent contract

Once their agreement with you terminated by their conduct, that means they were not authorised to sign any new tenancy agreements regarding your property.

Customer: replied 18 days ago.
I see, is there anything I can use to inform them of this as they are refusing everything I’ve told them

Sorry to say but your agents are themselves behaving like criminals here

Customer: replied 18 days ago.
They absolutely are - the police indeed think they are responsible themselves for the cannabis factory
Customer: replied 18 days ago.
As they had to issue a gas and electric certificate during the time of the factory - the certificates were issued by them which is very questionable as the property would have to be visited

Make a complaint to your local council, property ombudsman , professional regulatory body they are member of. and trading standards office. They should not be allowed to operate.

Customer: replied 18 days ago.
Just to clarify - the new tenancy agreement is not valid and I do not have to pay them 15%?
Customer: replied 18 days ago.
Do you have any ideas of how I can get my property back from them as they refused to give me the keys?

No, the new tenancy agreement is invalid, and you do not have to pay any fees to them

You further have protection under the consumer rights act,

A letting agent have breached the Consumer Rights Act if it acted without due care and skill

File for accelerated proceedings possession orders.

Customer: replied 18 days ago.
I see, are the tenants inside my responsibility?

There is usually no court hearing in the accelerated proceedings.

You have to file following form for applying -

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/916662/n5b-eng.pdf

There is court fee of £355.

No, your previous tenants were involved in illegal activities and chances are this new one are involved as well.

Customer: replied 18 days ago.
The letting agency have said that we can’t do anything about it because it’s the first 6 months of the tenancy agreement and after the 6 month period we have to give them notice - is this true?

it is a criminal matter rather than a civil one.

Customer: replied 18 days ago.
Indeed, I have also told the police about all matters involving them and are hoping to speak with them again soon

Yes, tenants can not be evicted within the first 6 months, however, when you got aware that your agent might be involved in illegal activities , you should have terminated the agreement with immediate effect.

Nevertheless, that was fundamental breach of their part, which terminated your agreement.

They should not have been signing any new tenancy agreements for your property.

Customer: replied 18 days ago.
We did terminated the agreement with them as soon as we found out about illegal activities- they refused to give us the property back

new tenancy is not approved one.

Apply for possession orders

If you need further assistance, please let me know.

Thank you.

Customer: replied 18 days ago.
I see, thank you very much for your help

My pleasure.

Thank you for using Just Answer and for allowing me to assist you with your legal query.

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