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Carpet cleaning, damp and deposit
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# 1
girl_withno_name
Old 11-10-2012, 9:46 AM
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Default Carpet cleaning, damp and deposit

We've been renting a property since Jan-11 and moved out end of Aug-12, although the contract doesn't run out until this Saturday.

We returned to the property last weekend to clean through and, as per the contract, had the carpets cleaned. Although the carpets were a bit damp when the job was finished, we figured this was normal and wouldn't be an issue, so locked up and returned home. Unfortunately we didn't take photos at this point in time because we still needed to mop the kitchen/hallway, so I was due to take these at lunch today before returning the keys.

On Tuesday of this week we received a call from the landlord saying that he was at the property doing work and painting (we knew nothing about this visit), but that:
  • He had taken meter readings and provided the LA with the values,
  • Seen that the carpets had been professionally cleaned and was happy with their condition,
  • Confirmed the property was left in a clean and suitable manner.
  • Had asked the LA to return our deposit in full,
Yesterday we received an email stating that the landlord has advised that the lower levels of the walls in the lounge area appear to be wet from the carpet cleaning and therefore he has requested the bond be held until he has had an opportunity to turn the heating on high to allow drying out and he will be in contact with the LA on Monday to advise of the condition.

I've returned to the property this morning and I can see what he's talking about, although I'm not sure whether he's also tried to paint the walls in the last couple of days (potentially making the problem worse, some of the paint seem to have been chipped/flaked away?) and the heating wasn't on at all.

Does anyone have any suggestions please?

You were only killing time and it'll kill you right back

Last edited by girl_withno_name; 11-10-2012 at 9:52 AM.
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# 2
girl_withno_name
Old 11-10-2012, 2:02 PM
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Just been back to the property and it looks like the landlord has been back sometime this morning with a fan (another visit we weren't made aware of, but at least he's trying to help... although I do feel all these unannounced vists and work are somewhat muddying the waters).

My OH has called to ask about the situation and he said to turn the heating off, that he's confident it will dry out but may ask for a contribution towards a dehumidifier.

Bit frustrating that we arranged to have the carpets cleaned to avoid a charge on the deposit and may have just landed ourselves in a worse situation!
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# 3
Fire Fox
Old 11-10-2012, 9:57 PM
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The landlord should not entering the property at all without your consent whilst you are still paying rent/ have the keys. Since handover doesn't appear to have happened I don't see how he can try to claim for wet carpets at the end of the tenancy! IMO if you pay money for dehumidifying the landlord should be reimbursing you the rent for the five days he illegally took occupation of your home.

You are responsible for ensuring the carpets are completely dry as well as clean before handover on Saturday.
What a difference a day makes, twenty four little hours.

Last edited by Fire Fox; 11-10-2012 at 10:00 PM.
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# 4
girl_withno_name
Old 12-10-2012, 4:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fire Fox View Post
The landlord should not entering the property at all without your consent whilst you are still paying rent/ have the keys. Since handover doesn't appear to have happened I don't see how he can try to claim for wet carpets at the end of the tenancy! IMO if you pay money for dehumidifying the landlord should be reimbursing you the rent for the five days he illegally took occupation of your home.

You are responsible for ensuring the carpets are completely dry as well as clean before handover on Saturday.
I handed back the keys yesterday although we are still paying rent until tomorrow - the carpets are completely dry, but the walls appear to have soaked in some of the moisture (up to about 3 or 4 feet up the wall ). We find out on Monday what the opinion on the condition of property / deposit is, so I may well be back for more advice then.
You were only killing time and it'll kill you right back

Last edited by girl_withno_name; 12-10-2012 at 4:58 PM.
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# 5
Fire Fox
Old 12-10-2012, 9:14 PM
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Contact the carpet cleaning company, they should not have left it that wet. What ventilation has the property had? Floors can only dry out if the air can hold the extra water, otherwise there is more of a tendency to 'wick' or settle as condensation.
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# 6
Caroline_a
Old 12-10-2012, 9:28 PM
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That sounds very odd. I've had 2 large dehumidifiers drying out my lounge after a long-standing slow leak from the kitchen. The walls dried very quickly and it was only about 10 inches or so up the walls, and that only in one or two places.

It almost sounds as if the carpet cleaners sprayed the walls!
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# 7
girl_withno_name
Old 13-10-2012, 9:39 AM
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What does 'wick' mean? I think the initial problem was two fold - that the carpets were left too wet and the property (since we don't live there anymore and therefore couldn't leave windows open for hours on end) didn't get much ventilation...so its possible that the excess water has settled as condensation and caused this damp problem? Since then the landlord has placed a fan at the property and I believe plans to get dehumidifiers in over the weekend.

The company's website mentions being touch dry from 2 hours onwards, but we returned to the property after 4 hours (so probably 1-2 hours after he finished the clean) and they didn't seem anywhere near dry. One other thing we noticed when we got back was that the bathroom was damp (condensation?) all over, which we thought odd because there's no carpets in there so we opened that window while we were there, although this was only briefly, and wiped down the walls with a towel. We have contacted the company and they've said that usually, if the property is occupied (which they knew it wasn't) then the heating would be on and windows opened... although this isn't advice they gave at the time because, if it only needed this for an hour or two, then we could've stuck around for the afternoon.
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# 8
Fire Fox
Old 13-10-2012, 6:30 PM
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Then you need to complain to the carpet cleaning company in writing as a matter of urgency. If you are then charged by your landlord you may be able to claim some of cost off the carpet cleaning company. However it is common sense that a property needs some ventilation after the carpets have been washed, the water has to go somewhere. You might have been wise to clean the carpets at an earlier stage.

First entry on Google
wick/wik/
Noun:
A strip of porous material up which liquid fuel is drawn by capillary action to the flame in a candle, lamp, or lighter.
A town, hamlet, or district: "Warwick".
Verb:
Absorb or draw off (liquid) by capillary action: "these excellent socks will wick away the sweat".
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# 9
girl_withno_name
Old 13-10-2012, 7:06 PM
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My first page of results on google are all about a scottish town! Lol
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# 10
Fire Fox
Old 13-10-2012, 8:52 PM
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Just type "wick definition".
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# 11
girl_withno_name
Old 15-10-2012, 12:49 PM
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The LA (I assume on the instruction of the LL) has come back with 100 for purchase of dehumidifier and 80 for redecoration... the LL did say last week that he wouldn't be charging for redecoration but this was by telephone, so not able to prove this (although I don't know what weighting it would have anyway) Not quite sure how we should proceed! This total bill for 'carpet cleaning and consequences' is now three times the costs of the carpet cleaning in the first place and we only got that done to avoid the charges if we didn't!

My OH is contacting the carpet cleaning company with a complaint and to see if we can claim some money from them. He (OH) also thinks we should request that we take possession of the dehumidifier if we're being charged for its purchase.
You were only killing time and it'll kill you right back

Last edited by girl_withno_name; 15-10-2012 at 1:13 PM.
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# 12
girl_withno_name
Old 15-10-2012, 10:09 PM
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Anyone able to advise, please?
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# 13
Fire Fox
Old 15-10-2012, 10:12 PM
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What is your question?
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# 14
girl_withno_name
Old 16-10-2012, 7:35 AM
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Basically I suppose - are these reasonable charges and is there anyway of getting out of some/all of them? What approach would we be best taking? Maybe this is daft, but I feel like we're being punished for "doing the right thing" and getting the carpets cleaned as per the contract ... even though we suspected they weren't actually cleaned at the beginning and didn't really need it, but wanted to avoid just this - the hassle and cost of deposit charges/disputes.
You were only killing time and it'll kill you right back

Last edited by girl_withno_name; 16-10-2012 at 9:00 AM.
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# 15
girl_withno_name
Old 16-10-2012, 1:26 PM
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The carpet cleaner has said that the machine used is a recycler, and a such he only used 1/4 of its tank plus 1 1/2 litres of pre-spray.

The LA have suggested this might be covered by our contents insurance (seems unlikely)... although they don't seem to have considered the (possibly more likely) case that it would be covered by the LL's buildings insurance.
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