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    • Aeonix
    • By Aeonix 18th Apr 17, 12:25 PM
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    Aeonix
    Tenant - cleaning and our deposit
    • #1
    • 18th Apr 17, 12:25 PM
    Tenant - cleaning and our deposit 18th Apr 17 at 12:25 PM
    Our lease is ending next week, and I just received the check-in inventory. I decided to go through our lease to refresh my memory about our pet clause.

    It states we 'agree to pay for a full professional clean.' That's literally it. It doesn't say what exactly is supposed to be professionally cleaned.

    On our inventory at check-in, it says the carpets are in anywhere from poor, to fair, to good and even one room with 'very good' carpet. It also notes the house was cleaned to a domestic standard, with some areas not cleaned properly, like the cupboards having food crumbs, and cobwebs on all the ceilings.

    Is the 'full professional clean' too ambiguous for them to enforce it?We never agreed to paying for a full professional clean of the house, and I am not about to pay for the entire house to be deep cleaned by a pro when I am going to do a deep clean myself, and just because I am OCD it will end up being better than it was when we came in, I'm not going to leave food crumbs.

    We agreed to clean the carpets, and that I will do. But if they think the entire house needs scubbed down because we have a cat and a dog, they are delusional.


    The second thing, they are planning to tear this house down. Not because we did anything lol, they just rented the house out while they got planning permission to demolish this one and put two new houses on the lot instead. I've read that the landlord can't claim anything that would be considered betterment, and my understanding is, they can't charge us for something if they don't plan to fix it.

    I ask because there's a small tear in the wallpaper in the lounge. It's about 3.5cmx5cm. The wallpaper is at least 20 years old (I'd say more like 30 though), but listed in good condition. I know they aren't going to repaper, because they're tearing the house down. And they aren't planning on marketing the house to anyone else. So how do we figure this out? If it was a fixture, I could see them wanting to sell it to a salvage yard, but it's wallpaper. And yes, they are the type of landlord who is going to squeeze every penny out of us, so we want to be sure we know what's fair and what isn't.
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    • ThePants999
    • By ThePants999 18th Apr 17, 12:32 PM
    • 578 Posts
    • 620 Thanks
    ThePants999
    • #2
    • 18th Apr 17, 12:32 PM
    • #2
    • 18th Apr 17, 12:32 PM
    my understanding is, they can't charge us for something if they don't plan to fix it.
    Originally posted by Aeonix
    That's not true. You're required to leave it in the state you found it, minus reasonable wear and tear, and if you don't, they're entitled to charge you fair costs for restoring it to that state. The law stops there - it doesn't mandate that they actually spend the money on doing that.
    • hazyjo
    • By hazyjo 18th Apr 17, 1:02 PM
    • 8,823 Posts
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    hazyjo
    • #3
    • 18th Apr 17, 1:02 PM
    • #3
    • 18th Apr 17, 1:02 PM

    I wonder why ending a tenancy is the only situation in real life where on side thinks it does not have to behave normally, if you borrowed someone's car would you really return it all beaten up and filthy and say "not my fault guv"?
    Originally posted by eggha
    To be fair on the OP, in that example if they were crushing the car after I returned it, I don't think I'd be worrying too much about cleaning it!
    2017 wins: Opera tickets; cinema tickets; lipstick; tickets, afternoon tea & bottle of Champagne at Ideal Home Show; 2 cases of NKD)
    • Hutchch0920
    • By Hutchch0920 18th Apr 17, 1:17 PM
    • 254 Posts
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    Hutchch0920
    • #4
    • 18th Apr 17, 1:17 PM
    • #4
    • 18th Apr 17, 1:17 PM
    I had a similar contract a while ago which stated the property must be professionally cleaned. We deep cleaned it ourselves and the inventory marked it as "cleaned to a professional standard". The estate agent tried to charge us the £250 to have it done properly. I contested it on the basis that "by a professional" and "to a professional standard" was no more than semantics -the adjudicator sided with me and the cash was not deducted from my deposit.

    I would personally think the wallpaper would be adjudicated as wear and tear. Walls are not impervious to wear and tear however I do tend to sugar wash any walls with significant dirt before check-out to be on the safe side.
    Save £12k in 2017 / Dec 2017 Travel Cash = £3,868/ £14,000 27.6%

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    • deannatrois
    • By deannatrois 18th Apr 17, 3:14 PM
    • 4,576 Posts
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    deannatrois
    • #5
    • 18th Apr 17, 3:14 PM
    • #5
    • 18th Apr 17, 3:14 PM
    Can you glue the wallpaper down again.

    Otherwise not a lot you can do.

    Doesn't matter what the LL intends to do with the place after you leave, you have to leave it as you found it. I am not sure we can predict what effect a small tear in the wallpaper will have on your deposit return. I'd imagine it to be little or none on such old wallpaper (you could point out it was 'beyond life') but no guarantees.
    • Aeonix
    • By Aeonix 18th Apr 17, 6:50 PM
    • 12 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    Aeonix
    • #6
    • 18th Apr 17, 6:50 PM
    • #6
    • 18th Apr 17, 6:50 PM
    I never said we should get to damage the house as much as we like and not pay for it. I'm trying to figure out what's considered betterment in a case like this. If the house being torn down later isn't a factor, then it isn't.

    I'm also not sure why you assume the carpet or walls stink of pets, we've never had a single accident in this house and even if we had, it would have been cleaned immediately because I wouldn't want to live with the smell. I've never heard of paint smelling of pets. Google seems to feel the same way. I will be cleaning the carpets, I never said at any point that I planned to just leave them, I have never done so in any house I've lived in, whether I owned it or not.

    You have made a lot of assumptions here, I said I don't want to pay to have an entire house cleaned by a professional company when it wasn't when we moved in, and we didn't agree to it. I didn't at any point say I was going to leave the house filthy. I wanted a clearer understanding of where we stand legally with the ambiguous terms listed in the tenancy agreement.



    a clause requiring you pay for a professional clean is considered to be an unfair clause since , as you yourself state, what really matters is the standard achieved by the clean, not who does it.

    your inventory appears to use the work "domestic" clean. I would suggest that hardly a word with a clear legal meaning so is rather worthless.

    at the end of the day are you seriously suggesting that you think it OK to damage someone else's property and then walk away with no repercussions? You are required to return the property in the same (or if you choose, better) condition that it was in when you took occupancy. You are not expected to make good any fair wear and tear.

    as has been explained countless times on these boards, wear and tear does not include damage to property, for example, torn wallpaper, or carpets and paint that stink of "pets". Those are both items that fall upon you to return in the condition you received them.

    whether the LL does any work at all is irrelevant, you are required to do what your contract states, return it in the condition it was in. If you don't you will have to pay whatever costs are assessed for the items you have failed to do. Those costs are not based on whether the property will or will not be torn down, they rae based on how old was the item and what was its condition when you got it so that there will not be any element of betterment in terms of the cost awarded. Obviously in the context of cleaning per se there is no issue of betterment, either you clean the property yourself (or you pay someone to do it) to return it to at least the standard of your inventory.

    I wonder why ending a tenancy is the only situation in real life where on side thinks it does not have to behave normally, if you borrowed someone's car would you really return it all beaten up and filthy and say "not my fault guv"?
    Originally posted by eggha
    • lewishardwick
    • By lewishardwick 18th Apr 17, 6:58 PM
    • 420 Posts
    • 459 Thanks
    lewishardwick
    • #7
    • 18th Apr 17, 6:58 PM
    • #7
    • 18th Apr 17, 6:58 PM
    Has the landlord made this intention to demolish the house direct to you?

    If they have, how about a friendly chat? I can't really see them being unreasonable, unless you've been unreasonable to them in the past...
    • Aeonix
    • By Aeonix 18th Apr 17, 7:03 PM
    • 12 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    Aeonix
    • #8
    • 18th Apr 17, 7:03 PM
    • #8
    • 18th Apr 17, 7:03 PM
    No, it came off when I took down some Christmas decorations. It wasn't about to come off the tape it got stuck to.
    That's what I'm unsure of, how the value is calculated on such old decor. It needed replacing well before we moved in, but I'm sure the landlord would disagree (of course).

    I feel as though they will nitpick and try to charge for anything they think they can to keep the deposit. We've had a landlord like that before (but that was before deposit protection). If it had to go to arbitration, do they have to still pay the undisputed amount in the 10 days, or does it all get held while it's decided? It's not a small amount of money that's being held (almost £2k), and we need as much back as possible, as quickly as possible.





    Can you glue the wallpaper down again.

    Otherwise not a lot you can do.

    Doesn't matter what the LL intends to do with the place after you leave, you have to leave it as you found it. I am not sure we can predict what effect a small tear in the wallpaper will have on your deposit return. I'd imagine it to be little or none on such old wallpaper (you could point out it was 'beyond life') but no guarantees.
    Originally posted by deannatrois
    • Aeonix
    • By Aeonix 18th Apr 17, 7:13 PM
    • 12 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    Aeonix
    • #9
    • 18th Apr 17, 7:13 PM
    • #9
    • 18th Apr 17, 7:13 PM
    Yes, they've mentioned it a few times, as well as asking us to let the demo crew in unannounced to see the house. We've been very accommodating, we have let them in even when they haven't given proper notice, we've let them bring surveyors around the property several times, we've always paid rent on time with no issues, we've only asked them in twice in a year to make small repairs. We have allowed the neighbours to come over when they need to (one wanted to trim her trees from our side for instance). We were told by the neighbours they love our dog, and having kids around again.

    While we have tried really hard to be good tenants, I can't say as much for them being landlords. They took several weeks to repair the fences when they blew down, in spite of me pointing out we needed them fixed asap to keep our dog inside our garden safely, they snooped when they came in to make repairs and we weren't home, and I get the feeling they think we're somehow in their way, even though they made the decision to rent the house out and insisted on a one year lease!


    Has the landlord made this intention to demolish the house direct to you?

    If they have, how about a friendly chat? I can't really see them being unreasonable, unless you've been unreasonable to them in the past...
    Originally posted by lewishardwick
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