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  • FIRST POST
    • Whippetoil
    • By Whippetoil 10th Oct 16, 7:39 AM
    • 9Posts
    • 4Thanks
    Whippetoil
    New Rental
    • #1
    • 10th Oct 16, 7:39 AM
    New Rental 10th Oct 16 at 7:39 AM
    Hi All,

    My daughter has just rented her first property, we moved her in over the weekend.
    The key she was given to a communal door didn't work, after sitting outside for over 2 hours unable to gain access and several phone calls to the letting agents we suggested getting a locksmith out that the LA agreed to.
    When the locksmith came out he confirmed the lock was broken and would need to drill out, fit new lock etc inc call out the total of £240.
    LA then said it was too expensive, couldn't contact the LL and so on, another hour later after several more phone calls the LA agreed that if we paid the locksmith they would reimburse, I asked for a confirmation email. The email arrived stating that they couldn't guarantee that they would reimburse the cost and would contact me to discuss.
    I'm not sure on what my position is now if both the LA and LL refuse to reimburse.
    I've tried to keep a long story very brief, if anybody has any suggestions or advice about what to do next it would be much appreciated.
    Thanks in advance and thanks for reading!
Page 1
    • csgohan4
    • By csgohan4 10th Oct 16, 8:07 AM
    • 2,596 Posts
    • 1,605 Thanks
    csgohan4
    • #2
    • 10th Oct 16, 8:07 AM
    • #2
    • 10th Oct 16, 8:07 AM
    Hi All,

    My daughter has just rented her first property, we moved her in over the weekend.
    The key she was given to a communal door didn't work, after sitting outside for over 2 hours unable to gain access and several phone calls to the letting agents we suggested getting a locksmith out that the LA agreed to.
    When the locksmith came out he confirmed the lock was broken and would need to drill out, fit new lock etc inc call out the total of £240.
    LA then said it was too expensive, couldn't contact the LL and so on, another hour later after several more phone calls the LA agreed that if we paid the locksmith they would reimburse, I asked for a confirmation email. The email arrived stating that they couldn't guarantee that they would reimburse the cost and would contact me to discuss.
    I'm not sure on what my position is now if both the LA and LL refuse to reimburse.
    I've tried to keep a long story very brief, if anybody has any suggestions or advice about what to do next it would be much appreciated.
    Thanks in advance and thanks for reading!
    Originally posted by Whippetoil

    Seems your LL is not willing to put it in writing they will cover the costs and seems a like a nice LL.


    Document every evidence you have, record phone calls and mention you have a right to get into the property.


    Be prepared to move after your initial contract as they are not a good LL
    • theartfullodger
    • By theartfullodger 10th Oct 16, 8:41 AM
    • 8,354 Posts
    • 10,905 Thanks
    theartfullodger
    • #3
    • 10th Oct 16, 8:41 AM
    • #3
    • 10th Oct 16, 8:41 AM
    Your daughter (yes, not you, you are not the tenant) writes (yes, writes! - keep copy) a calm polite letter to the landlord (yes landlord, copy agent) noting this issue and any others & requesting sorting within, say, 5 days.

    There is draft letter on Shelter's excellent website here...
    http://england.shelter.org.uk/get_advice/repairs_and_bad_conditions/repairs_in_private_lets/reporting_repairs_to_a_landlord

    If he fails to refund you your daughter (your daughter) should sue him through small-claims route, after sending LBA. See CaB website for guidance.

    This is not a promising start so I agree, plan on moving: Indeed many landlords would evict using s21 for less than this.. Wrong, not fair, but be aware..
    Last edited by theartfullodger; 10-10-2016 at 8:49 AM.
    • davidmcn
    • By davidmcn 10th Oct 16, 9:05 AM
    • 3,879 Posts
    • 3,450 Thanks
    davidmcn
    • #4
    • 10th Oct 16, 9:05 AM
    • #4
    • 10th Oct 16, 9:05 AM
    And unless the landlord owns the rest of the block then it's a cost they should be passing on to the managing agents to deal with - they'll only ultimately be liable for their share.
    • Whippetoil
    • By Whippetoil 10th Oct 16, 9:17 AM
    • 9 Posts
    • 4 Thanks
    Whippetoil
    • #5
    • 10th Oct 16, 9:17 AM
    • #5
    • 10th Oct 16, 9:17 AM
    Thanks for the suggestions so far.
    Just to be clear I am well aware that I am not the tenant and I am trying to keep out of this as much as possible, the only bit I have got myself involved in is the door issue, as if left to the agents we would still be sitting outside the flat waiting to move things in now.
    I think the landlord only owns the flat in question, the access door is shared with a commercial business on the ground floor and no one else. There is 1 more flat in the building but that has there own rear access, although they can gain access through the shared door also.
    It's a complicated situation and everybody seems to be avoiding any responsibility (and cost) which is where I expected the agents to help...
    • Bluebirdman of Alcathays
    • By Bluebirdman of Alcathays 10th Oct 16, 9:21 AM
    • 2,713 Posts
    • 2,987 Thanks
    Bluebirdman of Alcathays
    • #6
    • 10th Oct 16, 9:21 AM
    • #6
    • 10th Oct 16, 9:21 AM
    Thanks for the suggestions so far.
    Just to be clear I am well aware that I am not the tenant and I am trying to keep out of this as much as possible, the only bit I have got myself involved in is the door issue, as if left to the agents we would still be sitting outside the flat waiting to move things in now.
    I think the landlord only owns the flat in question, the access door is shared with a commercial business on the ground floor and no one else. There is 1 more flat in the building but that has there own rear access, although they can gain access through the shared door also.
    It's a complicated situation and everybody seems to be avoiding any responsibility (and cost) which is where I expected the agents to help...
    Originally posted by Whippetoil
    The agent won't help - they are employed by the LL and will do what the LL tells them. Daughter will have to pursue the LL, as that is who her contract is with. How they then pursues managing agents/other flatowners/whomever is their business.
    As others have said, don't be surprised if an S21 appears shortly after - it's a shitty world we live in.
    • Kynthia
    • By Kynthia 10th Oct 16, 9:27 AM
    • 4,702 Posts
    • 6,715 Thanks
    Kynthia
    • #7
    • 10th Oct 16, 9:27 AM
    • #7
    • 10th Oct 16, 9:27 AM
    Has your daughter actually managed to get into the property? If she hasn't yet then without 'taking possession of the property' then it can be argued the tenancy hasn't yet begun and therefore rent isn't due.
    Don't listen to me, I'm no expert!
    • Whippetoil
    • By Whippetoil 10th Oct 16, 9:32 AM
    • 9 Posts
    • 4 Thanks
    Whippetoil
    • #8
    • 10th Oct 16, 9:32 AM
    • #8
    • 10th Oct 16, 9:32 AM
    Has your daughter actually managed to get into the property? If she hasn't yet then without 'taking possession of the property' then it can be argued the tenancy hasn't yet begun and therefore rent isn't due.
    Originally posted by Kynthia
    Yes, we got in on the day, I paid for the locksmith that day, I'm beginning to think I may never see the reimbursement though, even if I want to pursue it the above posts have made me a bit nervous about kicking up any kind of fuss
    Last edited by Whippetoil; 10-10-2016 at 9:37 AM.
    • jimmy cricket
    • By jimmy cricket 10th Oct 16, 9:56 AM
    • 257 Posts
    • 150 Thanks
    jimmy cricket
    • #9
    • 10th Oct 16, 9:56 AM
    • #9
    • 10th Oct 16, 9:56 AM
    I guess that your daughter is now the only person to hold keys for this new door lock. You could be really cheeky and charge the LL £240 for a copy of the key
    • pmlindyloo
    • By pmlindyloo 10th Oct 16, 10:02 AM
    • 9,967 Posts
    • 11,762 Thanks
    pmlindyloo
    I am presuming your daughter has a Shorthold assured tenancy, in which case the landlord cannot issue a Section 21 for possession until the fixed term has ended.

    Don't be put off by the other posts. The LL (if what the LA says is true ) is acting like a ****

    Your landlord had a responsibility to allow you into the accommodation.

    Write a letter to the landlord explaining the situation, enclosing a copy of the bill and asking for reinbursement within 7 days and saying that you will be taking court action as is your right if this is not resolved. (Don't bother with the Shelter template letter it is not appropriate for this)

    You may also wish to say that you would be happy for this to be deducted from the first month's rent if this is more convenient.

    Write to the landlord (address on contract - LL's address may be c/o of the letting agent- and copy to the Letting agent.

    If you do not receive reinbursement within the time limit then take LL to the small claims court. Job done.

    Of course this will start things off on a bad foot but that cannot be helped.

    Of course your daughter must be the one to do all this.
    • Whippetoil
    • By Whippetoil 12th Oct 16, 7:14 AM
    • 9 Posts
    • 4 Thanks
    Whippetoil
    Happy ending!!
    I (yes, me) have received an email from the agents this morning confirming that the landlord is happy to reimburse the cost of the locksmith.
    Faith restored in people, at least for now.
    Thanks for all the contributions
    • mozza78
    • By mozza78 12th Oct 16, 7:21 AM
    • 92 Posts
    • 148 Thanks
    mozza78
    Seems only fair he should reimburse you. Glad to hear of a happy ending for a change.
    • anselld
    • By anselld 12th Oct 16, 7:37 AM
    • 4,869 Posts
    • 4,322 Thanks
    anselld
    Good news!
    However, I am curious how were the other users of this communal door able to come and go before your locksmith arrived, and what are they doing now you have changed the lock?
    • Whippetoil
    • By Whippetoil 12th Oct 16, 7:43 AM
    • 9 Posts
    • 4 Thanks
    Whippetoil
    It is a communal door shared with just one other - a commercial business who locked the door when they closed on Friday evening and were not due back until Monday, by the time we tried to get in on Saturday it was broken, just one of those things I suppose, pretty inconvenient timing though....and they have been given a key to get a copy made
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