Is it worth chasing rent arrears and damages?

Is it worth chasing rent arrears and damages?

9:26 AM, 23rd April 2024, About 2 months ago 6

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Hi, a few years ago, my tenants signed a Deed of Surrender (DOS) and they now owe four months rent plus the rent increased they have not paid.

I have returned their deposit in full. Four months later, when the tradesman became available, he discovered the floors were completely damaged, due to the tenant swapping out the appliances with their own (it took 12 months to repair).

Prior to this, my tenant signed a document to state that if any damage is caused they will be fully liable. Is it worth pursuing this? As at the time, via a soilictor, they offered to pay 50% of the rent arrears (not the rent increase) on the condition that I do not make any further claims against them and not make any contact with them.

For context this is what the DOS says :”The Tenant hereby surrenders and releases to the Landlord all their interests in the Property with vacant possession and the Landlord hereby accepts this surrender.”

Thanks,

C


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Comments

Nikki Palmer

10:29 AM, 23rd April 2024, About 2 months ago

This would seem to be a case of "shutting the stable door........

I'm not sure why you returned the security deposit, why it took 4 months to get a tradesperson to inspect potential damage caused and why they then took 12 months to repair it?

I think you've been fleeced

Graham Bowcock

10:56 AM, 23rd April 2024, About 2 months ago

Some basic observations:

Normally you would do an outgoing with the tenant and agree there and then any issues. Not dealing with them until many months (or is it years) afterwards seems somewhat unfair.

Did you draft the Deed of Surrender yourself or use a solicitor? If you used a solicitor then maybe ask them.

It is always difficult to comment on such questions without seeing the entire agreement or understanding the context.

For what it';s worth, I think your speed at dealing with this is against you.

Michael Booth

15:24 PM, 23rd April 2024, About 2 months ago

Simple no don't bother ,it's hassle costly , don't forget you have to abide by the law or you will end up being prosecuted, they don't its best to move on if you took a deposit keep that.

Paddy O'Dawes

15:55 PM, 23rd April 2024, About 2 months ago

A few years ago? What's taken so long. You mention you have a solicitors letter acknowledging the arrears, go put that in front of a legally trained individual and ask if it's worth making a claim (online) although as it's taken this long to put forward anything about damage and returned the deposit I suspect that would be an awkward argument.

Julesgflawyer

16:22 PM, 23rd April 2024, About 2 months ago

Even if the deed of surrender wasn't a "clean break" - and most tenants would negotiate an agreed payment in return for such a clean break, your problem may be proving that the tenants were responsible for the damage before the lease ended. You may have other evidence to support that claim but if you don't then it's your word against theirs, and as claimant the burden of proof is on you.
And the delay won't help with that.

C Lane

20:30 PM, 23rd April 2024, About 2 months ago

My concern is the counter claim as throughout their tenancy they have been making claims which is not true.

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