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Jamie-Law, Solicitor
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October last month i advertised one of my rooms on

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October last month i advertised one of my rooms on Spareroom.co.uk online website. I uploaded the room details and confirmed there were to be 3 housemates and the landlord WOULD LIVE OUT. I got an interested man who came and viewed the room and the following day confirmed he would take the room at £650 ocm.I explained to him that i was staying at the house whilst i tried to let the room and see my daughter off to university. i explained that i would need references and proof of income and payment of deposit in order to take the room off the market and draw up a Lodger's Agreement which i did. 2 weeks before the move in date after he failed to provide any employment or previous landlord references he decided he wated to pull out. he claimed i had misrepresented and misled him by being resident in the house with my partner. in fact my partner and i are separating and we both woould have been out of the house before the 29th October the new lodger's occupation date and the effective date of the lodger's agreement. i agreed to just take what amoounted to one weeks rent £160 as i had lost 2 offers of rental over this time. I refunded the balance of £490 but he is now instructing solicitors to sue me in the small claims court for the £160. I have prepared a response to them and would like a lawyer to first give me an idea as to where i stand. then if you could have a look at my response. I'm happy to cut and paste it.
JA: What steps have you taken so far? Have you prepared or filed any paperwork?
Customer: I've prepared a response to their letter before action.
JA: Where is the house located?
Customer: Whetstone North London
JA: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: here's the response i put together. Amirah Choudhury
By EmailDate: 12 November 2020Dear Amirah,Re: Your Client: Roland Oyejola.I am writing in response to your letter dated 9th November 2020.Your letter requires that I confirm suggested settlement terms and respond within 5 working days; ordinarily this is a restrictive and unreasonable deadline, 14 or 28 days would have been reasonable; considering you as Mr Ouejola’s legal representatives are already in place. In any case I would bring to your attention the fact that I am not well. I suffer with Parkinson’s disease (“PD”) a neurological degenerative chronic condition; symptomatic of the condition and I am currently suffering from is anxiety and severe depression for which I am currently undergoing counselling with a Neuro Psychologist at The National Hospital for Neurology & Neurosurgery, Queens Square London W1 who also manage my PD care. In my current state I need considerably more time to address this matter. Due to my anxiety it took me 3 days to read and digest the contents of your letter. I need more time to seek advice and support.In the meantime, I am attempting to respond as I feel relatively strong enough today to address some of your assertions made in your letter. Tomorrow I may not be well enough to function, I have to take each day at a time.1. CONSUMER CONTRACT – It is accepted that your client and I entered into a consumer contract namely the Lodger’s Agreement which is legally binding. My obligation under the agreement was to provide your client with the room he had come to view in accordance with the description as advertised in the Spareroom website on the day your client was to occupy the room. Firstly, what is the case, but is completely irrelevant is the fact that my partner and I are separated and he was in the process of moving out; he was to vacate the property before the 29th October the designated date of your client’s occupation. I made this clear to your client on the phone call we had; he did not voice any reservation on the call. Secondly, The fact that my daughter is at university does not mean she is bound to return to the property in the holidays. It is in fact the case that on her vacation breaks she would come out to me wherever in the world I would be. This was the case last year where she spent her summer long vacation in West Africa with me. In any case I have 3 siblings in London my daughter could stay with any one of them. In fact, my daughter would not stay at the house if I was away. I would never permit my daughter a young teenage girl to be in a house with a man who is a stranger to her, even if the house belonged to me.
2. MISREPRESENTATION / MISLEADING ACTIONS: I reject the assertion that I engaged in any prohibited practice namely misleading actions or misrepresentation. I accept the fact that I did indeed advertise the room on Spareroom.co.uk. The room was advertised as being let with a live out landlord; meaning that at the point where the room is being let (NOT at the point it is being advertised) the landlord will be living out. Mr Oyajola came to view the property including the room. At the viewing I explained in very clear terms that I live and work outside of the country, I was in the country to settle my daughter into university and then I would be off again Covid-19 restrictions permitting. If the room is not actually let then the status of the landlord’s occupation is of absolutely no relevance. It is whilst the lodger is in occupation of the room that the landlord’s live in or live out status is relevant. I was due to move out of the property the day before your client was due to move in, thus providing your client with a room and occupation of it in accordance with that advertised on the Spareroom website. At the point at which your client changed his mind he was not

Hello, my name is ***** ***** I will help you. I am just reviewing your question. Hopefully, we can get this resolved quickly.

If he signed the agreement and then did not comply with the terms (by not providing previous Landlord references and he pulled out, then you do not need to refund the deposit.

It is not unreasonable to keep £160. In fact, it will cost him more than this to take you to Court. Legal costs can't be claimed as a small claim.

So you are quite right, keep the £160

There is nothing he can do.

Can I clarify anything for you about this today, please?

If you need anything further I am available for a follow up at no extra cost.

I was just following up to see if there is anything else I can assist you with today? If so, just let me know.

If not, then I am happy to have been able to assist you.

Customer: replied 18 days ago.
ok thanks standing by

Sure. I hope you can see my response above.

Customer: replied 18 days ago.
this is the letter new lodger Roland's solicitors sent me. Should i amend anything in my response?

They won't recover those costs as a small claim.

Its an empty threat

Does that clarify?

Customer: replied 18 days ago.
did you read both letters? Can I send off my response without amending anything? is it a good response?

Yes, I read the letter. It's fine to send.

Does that assist?

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