Here’s a query to the blog clinic from Mary (not her actual identify), who’s a tenant in England.
My buddies and I agreed to hire a property described as a ‘furnished three bed room flat’ in a joint tenancy. Once we seen the property, there was no mattress within the third bed room, however the letting agent assured us it might arrive earlier than our tenancy begin date. This was documented in our supply letter and in a number of paperwork produced by the letting agent, together with the Notification of Letting, the place it clearly stipulates that the owner was so as to add a 3rd mattress and mattress previous to the tenancy graduation date.
It was not famous within the tenancy settlement itself, however all events agree it was to be offered.
It’s now per week into our tenancy and there’s nonetheless no third mattress. The letting agent has stated that there was a mixup with the furnishings firm and he doesn’t know when the mattress can be delivered. I do know we’re not legally entitled to withhold hire, but when we had been to sue the owner for breach of contract, are you aware what damages we’d be entitled to? I’m able to keep buddies till subsequent week, so haven’t really incurred any loss up to now besides huge inconvenience, however it doesn’t appear proper that we now have to pay hire for a property we can’t stay in as a 3 tenant family because of this breach.
Moreover, if there’s nonetheless no mattress within the property by subsequent week, will I be entitled to remain in a lodge and declare these prices again from the owner?
It is a breach of contract, and so you’ll in all probability be capable to declare compensation however solely in court docket proceedings – which I believe you’ll not wish to do in view of the chaotic state of the courts these days. Most claims are being severely delayed, and it might take many months in your declare to be handled.
The compensation would in all probability be primarily based on the truth that one of many rooms can’t be used for a time frame. So if there are 4 rooms within the property and you’ll’t use certainly one of them for a month and the hire is £400 your compensation can be within the area of £100. The extent of compensation is often primarily based on the hire – so tenants of cheaper properties are inclined to get decrease awards.
I don’t suppose that you’re entitled to go and keep in a lodge, however you CAN use a little-known process to ‘unwind’ your tenancy. For those who do that inside 30 days of the beginning of the tenancy, you might be entitled to get well all cash you’ve got paid. There’s some steering on the Shelter website here.
The issue is I believe that you don’t want to finish the tenancy; you need the mattress!
The opposite factor you are able to do is complain to your letting brokers’ Property Redress Scheme though it’s potential that they could not make any award because the fault is actually the landlords, not the letting agent.
You could possibly perhaps recommend you purchase a mattress and offset the price in opposition to the hire – this can in all probability be cheaper than staying in a lodge.
Maintain pushing the company, although and threaten to report them to their Property Redress Scheme, and perhaps additionally threaten to concern proceedings for compensation in opposition to the owner (you don’t even have to start out a declare!), because the extra fuss you make about this, the extra stress the brokers will placed on the owner to resolve the difficulty.