Evicting vulnerable tenant in hospital – Landlord Action response9:55 AM, 3rd July 2019
About 2 weeks ago 69
I have just handed in my two months notice to the Estate Agent (EA) managing the flat I’ve been renting. Within a week of handing in the notice I went on holiday for two weeks. I confirmed my time away to the EA by email stating the exact date of my return. I also mentioned that I may have no/limited access to mobile/wifi reception during this time.
During these two weeks the EA had carried out several viewings of the flat taken place but the potential tenants had rejected the property due to a patch of mould/ condensation issue along the ceiling above the patio doors.
On my return from holiday I found this email from the EA in my inbox:
“I hope you are having a nice time away. Can you please confirm the date you are due to return?
Also we have had a number a viewings at the property, of which the mould/ condensation issue along the ceiling above the patio doors has had a very negative impact. We have a contractor who is able to attend this week to clean it off, they will charge a call out fee of £30 which we will look to recover from your deposit. It is understandably a difficult place to reach without the use of a ladder.”
The damp patch was gone! So it looks like the contractor has already been.
I have constantly battled with damp and mould throughout the flat for the 1.5yrs I lived in the flat. I have to spend cleaning out the mould build up every few weeks mainly in the living room and the bedroom. This is purely for my benefit so I don’t fall sick with build up of mould. Also I am clean freak and house proud. This includes the area mentioned in the estate agent’s email above. I have a ladder and I could reach the area and I have been cleaning the area regularly. Or the the damp/mould would be far more widespread and in a much worse state. Unfortunately I was unable to do much cleaning prior to going on holiday.
The flat is actually a maisonette with no gas central heating. There is a single Robinson Willey Warmplan heater in the living room. The timer on it has never worked and I mentioned this to EA within 7 days of moving into the flat. All the heat escapes to the gallery bed room upstairs so the living room is always stone cold. There is no heating and no double glazing in the kitchen and the bathroom. The extractor hood in the kitchen has never worked and no extractor fan in the bathroom. There is no other heating anywhere in the flat.
My concern is this – I am due to vacate the property end of March. I am a tenant who has never had even penny deducted from my deposit. Each time I vacated a rented property I always make sure the property is returned in a state that matches the check-in inventory if not better. I would never handover a property with damp at the end of the tenancy because I know this is risking deduction from deposit. In this case however I still occupy the property. So did the EA do the right thing in getting a contractor in to clear the damp themselves and expecting me to pay for it during the tenancy without giving me the chance to rectify it first?
I look forward to reading your replies.
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